Welcome to Florida SouthWestern State College!
Now that you’re part of the Florida SouthWestern State College family, many opportunities await you. Did you know that two-thirds of FSW students graduate debt free? By choosing to become an FSW Buccaneer, you have made both a strong academic and economic decision.
At FSW, you’ll quickly discover that our faculty members bring world-class experience and a deep knowledge base to the classroom, and our course offerings will prepare you to further your education even beyond a bachelor’s degree.
Along the way, your FSW experience will stretch far beyond the classroom. Honors courses, internships and undergraduate research opportunities are available, and FSW students also have the opportunity to study abroad in Italy at the Lorenzo de’ Medici Institute. Many others have traveled abroad to experience learning opportunities in countries including Belize, Nicaragua, Ireland, Ghana and South Africa.
Outside of the classroom, you will always find ways to stay engaged. Student clubs and activities, intramural sports and a state-of-the-art fitness center will keep you socially and physically active. You can also enjoy the arts - from musical and theatrical performances by your fellow classmates to the exhibits in our Rauschenberg Gallery, Rush Gallery and Museum of Medical History.
If athletics is your thing, then come out and cheer on your Bucs! City of Palms Park, the former spring training facility of the Boston Red Sox, is home to our baseball and softball teams, and the Suncoast Credit Union Arena houses our men’s and women’s basketball teams. Since we brought back our athletics program, our teams have come out in full force, all together winning five conference championships, two state championships, and four Top 10 finishes at the NJCAA National Tournament in less than four years. The fall of 2019 also brings women’s volleyball, offering another chance to show off your Buc pride!
Make the most of your education and experiences at FSW. When the day arrives that you put on your cap and gown, I’ll be there to shake your hand and congratulate you on a job well done.
Dr. Jeff Allbritten, President
About Florida SouthWestern State College
Over Five Decades of History
As the largest institution of higher learning in Southwest Florida, Florida SouthWestern State College (FSW) has been serving the five-county region of Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry and Glades for over five decades, and currently has over 35,000 alumni serving in the healthcare, education, public service, and technology industries around the world. Originally founded in 1962 as Edison Junior College, FSW has developed into a leading provider of higher education opportunities for deserving students from across the country.
From Edison State College to Florida SouthWestern State College
In May 2014, Florida Governor Rick Scott signed a bill to change the college’s name to Florida SouthWestern State College. On July 1, 2014, faculty, staff, students, administrators, business and political leaders joined to celebrate the first day of the institution’s new beginning as Florida SouthWestern State College.
Along with the new name, the FSW Buccaneers are back in collegiate athletic competition. City of Palms Park is home to our baseball and softball teams. In the Fall 2016, Suncoast Credit Union Arena opened and is the home to the college’s men’s and women’s basketball teams. The Arena also serves as a place for intramural sports, and features a modern Wellness Center. Additionally, the Arena will host a variety of concerts, graduations, tournaments and community events.
Advanced healthcare programs to be offered will include the high-demand physician’s assistant. Faculty, staff, students and the community alike enjoy monthly gatherings to gaze at the stars at the James & Barbara Moore Observatory on campus.
The Hendry/Glades Curtis Center in LaBelle now has the new Education Hall, featuring the Barbara and Joe Marlin Hilliard Library, which also includes three study rooms; the First Bank Community Room for community meetings and events; The Perry Family Galleria (Julia Perry, Tommy Perry, Stanley Perry, Carl Perry); a computer lab/classroom, six faculty offices and a patio plaza.
On the Collier Campus in Naples, environmentally friendly practices are abundant. In fact, the campus is the first in Collier County to have LEED-certified buildings, which are constructed with environmentally-friendly materials and are exceptionally energy-efficient. The Allen & Marla Weiss Health Sciences Hall is home to one of the most sophisticated ER simulation suites, which prepares nursing and paramedic students to make an immediate and positive impact in healthcare. The college, in partnership with the University of Florida and the Healthcare Network of Southwest Florida, has a dental building that provides dental care to children who may not otherwise have the benefits of a healthy smile.
Led by its fourth president, Dr. Jeffery S. Allbritten, the college remains committed to providing affordable educational access to a four-year baccalaureate degree, a two-year associate degree, or a certificate from one of its five accredited schools:
- School of Health Professions
- School of Education
- School of Business and Technology
- School of Pure and Applied Sciences
- School of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences
FSW launched the Center for International Education to enhance study abroad experiences, and sponsored programs to encourage faculty and student research opportunities. The college is also known for its dedication to the arts. The year 2016 marked the 30th anniversary of the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall, which is an integral part of the college. FSW has fall and spring performances at The Hall featuring our jazz, symphony orchestra and choir. Our college is also home to the Bob Rauschenberg Gallery at FSW, where numerous exhibits are open to the public featuring artists of modern and contemporary art in all mediums, including the works of the late Rauschenberg and international names like Yoko Ono. Within our Richard H. Rush Library, we also have the Rush Collections Gallery on the ground floor.
Board of Trustees
Danny Nix, B.S., Charlotte County
Danny Nix, of Punta Gorda, is the owner of Nix & Associates Real Estate, LLC. He received his bachelor’s degree from Western Governor’s University. He is appointed for a term beginning November 20, 2017, and ending May 31, 2018.
Christian Cunningham, M.A., Collier County
Mr. Cunningham, of Naples, is the chief human resources officer for Herc Rentals. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Pennsylvania. He was appointed January 30, 2018 for a term that ends May 31, 2021.
Laura Perry, B.A.S, M.A., Glades County
Ms. Perry is a speech language pathologist with the Glades County School District. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Florida SouthWestern State College and her master’s degree from the University of Florida. She was appointed April 19, 2018 for a term ending May 31, 2020.
Julia du Plooy, B.S., Hendry County
Mr. Vernon, of Naples, is a founding partner of the business and investment litigation firm Vernon Healy in Naples. He received a bachelor’s degree from Florida State University and received a law degree from Stetson University College of Law.
Bruce Laishley, Charlotte County
Bruce Laishley, of Punta Gorda, is the co-owner of Smuggler’s Enterprises, Inc, and is the CEO of Florida Premier Contractors, LLC, and the co-owner of Southwest Land Developers, Inc. He was appointed August 21, 2017 for a term that ends May 31, 2018.
Jonathan A. Martin, J.D., Lee County
Mr. Martin, of Fort Myers, is an attorney with Parvey & Frankel Attorneys, P.A. He received his bachelor’s degree from Stetson University and his juris doctorate degree from Liberty University School of Law. He is appointed for a term beginning February 28, 2018 and ending May 31, 2018.
Marjorie Starnes-Bilotti, J.D., Lee County
Marjorie Starnes-Bilotti, of Fort Myers, is a retired attorney. From 1994 to 1999, she was a member of the Florida State Board of Community Colleges. Starnes- Bilotti received bachelor’s and law degrees from Florida State University.
Florida SouthWestern State College will be the catalyst for creating an innovative education system which provides accessible educational pathways that prepare students to be enlightened and productive citizens.
We value student success, integrity, intellectual inquiry, and academic rigor.
The mission of Florida SouthWestern State College is to inspire learning; prepare a diverse population for creative and responsible participation in a global society; and serve as a leader for intellectual, economic, and cultural awareness in the community.
1. Focus recruiting and admissions upon entering FSW with the intent and commitment to graduate.
- Continue to recruit high-achieving students
- Encourage full-time enrollment
- Facilitate student completion of financial aid / scholarship applications
2. Explore new workforce-related certificate and degree options benefiting potential FSW students.
3. Support curricular and programmatic innovation to enhance the academic experience, engender student achievement, and increase the number of successful FSW graduates.
- Continue to reinforce best teaching and learning practices through professional development offerings
- Upgrade and increase academic technology to support active and engaged learning across the disciplines
- Strengthen the academic learning community through opportunities for dialogue and collaboration within and across disciplines
4. Review college processes and procedures based on facilitating graduation.
5. Create a college experience that enhances FSW students’ - both residential and commuter, traditional and nontraditional - education to become a well-rounded FSW graduate.
- Continue to enhance residence life programs
- Continue to involve students in extracurricular activities - academic enrichment experiences, athletic events, cultural experiences, international experiences, research opportunities, etc.
- Expand internship experiences
- Explore how students can get a full program/degree/certificate on a satellite campus by articulating the satellite campus program of study including timelines of classes on each campus
- Increase scholarly activity, including opportunities for student research
- Expand international education