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$75K scholarship helps 12 Immokalee students pursue health care careers

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Physicians Regional is donating a $75,000 scholarship to the Immokalee Foundation in order to help 12 students interested in health care find the tools and guidance they need for their future careers.

The Immokalee Foundation’s Career Pathways program connects students with resources to explore different options for their futures, working with them as early as the sixth grade so that they can choose their paths by eighth grade. They get access to adult mentors in their chosen fields, afterschool programs, and guidance on which classes to take and any certifications they can earn.

The Career Pathways program offers real hands-on experience, especially useful to students interested in the health care industry.

“There’s many interests as far as the range of health care for students, so many of them will be able to shadow different doctors within [the hospital]; they will have training, they will have patient-related procedures that they can participate in, ” said Noemi Perez, president and CEO of the Immokalee Foundation. “Also, some non-participant tasks—marketing, billing—so they’re going to have access to all sorts of different areas within the hospital.”

Physicians Regional’s $75,000 scholarship donation to Career Pathways will support 12 Immokalee students interested in pursuing careers in health care. Scott Lowe, CEO of Physicians Regional, says this is a good opportunity to invest in not only the students’ futures but the hospital’s, too.

“They’re having such a challenge with finding employees, and he really wanted to focus on bringing more of the community-based employees into the hospital, specifically in the Immokalee area, since they’re very close,” Perez said. “We talked to [Lowe] about Career Pathways—he was very impressed. He sees the importance of investing in our generation now.”

The scholarship money will be donated after 8 a.m. Wednesday morning.