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Florida Southwestern State College opens fifth location in Southwest Florida

January 16, 2019
By CJ HADDAD ( , Fort Myers Beach Bulletin, Fort Myers Beach Observer

On Monday morning, Florida Southwestern State College opened its fifth location in Southwest Florida.

The brand new Bonita Springs location will host a Corporate Training Center, providing a centralized location for FSW's corporate training initiatives that are funded through Florida workforce grants.

"We're very excited," said FSW President, Dr. Jeffery Allbritten. "This is the fifth location to be able to provide more opportunities for this region. This location specifically is focused on working in with our business industry partners to be able to provide not only training, but also "Just in Time Training" - the things they might need, to be a real resource.

"You come in. You have a question. We're going to dig and try and help you find solutions. We're going to help find resources. That's what this is all about."

Several local business leaders came out to speak on how the training center will help them prepare new employees, as well as existing ones.

"For all of our employees, talent, talent development and talent retention is very key for us to not only sustain what we've currently achieved, but to help our growth plans for the region as we build forward. So we are very, very pleased with the relationship we've had (with FSW). This facility, this initiative, on top of the efforts we've already had, we certainly think will continue to help us," said Michael Boose, Director of HR & Organizational Development for ARTHREX.

Tiffany Esposito, president of the Bonita Springs Area Chamber of Commerce was in attendance to welcome FSW to the Bonita community.

"We are thrilled to welcome FSW to the Bonita Springs community," said Esposito in a prepared statement. "While we have benefited from a regional partnership with FSW for many years, this new, central location will give the business community access to unique education and training opportunities. The corporate training center adds to the economic development incentives we offer in the region and will allow us to continue to grow and strengthen the business community throughout Southwest Florida."

The facility is located in the Riverview Corporate Center on U.S. 41.

"With a majority of businesses we serve being located within 20-30 miles of Bonita Springs, the new location provides easy access to meeting space in a corporate setting, and allows for more Southwest Florida businesses to take advantage of our corporate training programs," Dr. Robert R. Jones, vice president for Economic Development and External Affairs said in a statement.

FSW has provided $11 million in training funds for over 6,000 new employees at local businesses.

Through a partnership with CareerSource Florida and administered by FSW, the Florida Flex Quick Response Training (QRT) grant lasts for 12 months and is targeted on the high-customized training programs that companies need to improve the skill base of new hires in high-wage full-time jobs.

FSW is the largest facilitator of the QRT grant.

Online classes are also available through Ed2Go, provided at the training center or at a business location.

Currently, FSW partnerships include Hertz, HERC, ARTHREX, Cheney Brothers and various other businesses of all scales to help provide QRT training.

"We live here. This is our community. We're proud of it and we want to help this area grow," said Allbritten. "Everyone benefits."

This training facility, in turn, will help local businesses create new jobs for their enterprises, with the confidence that new employees will be better prepared for whichever environment they take on.

"I see this not only helping the companies grow, but when they can find it easier to find better skilled employees, then their company bottom line is enhanced," Allbritten said.

FSW, in addition to the new facility, also has Lee, Collier, Charlotte and Hendry/Glades campuses.

The FSW Corporate Training Center, developed by Curran Young Construction, is at 27400 Riverview Center Boulevard, suite 2 in Bonita.

For more information, visit

-Connect with this reporter on Twitter: @haddad_cj



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