The FutureMakers Coalition, a local college access network representing five counties in Southwest Florida, has recently received a $300,000 grant from the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation.

The three-year grant will help fund projects and initiatives lead by the coalition’s Regional Action Teams focused on the goal of increasing the number of Southwest Florida residents with a high quality postsecondary degree or credential to 40% by the year 2025. “This generous funding put forth by the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation will power the ideas generated by experts and go directly to support the programs identified through the Coalition’s Regional Action Teams to address identified needs to boost our region’s workforce through skills training and educational initiatives,” said Sarah Owen, president and CEO of the Southwest Florida Community Foundation, the anchor organization for the Coalition.

Formed in 2015, the FutureMakers Coalition was born out of a two-year regional initiative focused on increasing the number of high school seniors in Charlotte, Collier, Glades, Hendry and Lee counties completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. The coalition is a regional partnership involving education, government, business, nonprofit and citizen stakeholders and advocates committed to creating a cradle-to-career pathway to ensure success for traditional students and adult learners. The Southwest Florida Community Foundation serves as the anchor organization for the coalition.

Best Buy founder and Southwest Florida resident Dick Schulze founded the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation in 2004. The foundation supports areas of education, human service, health and healthcare.

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