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Education

A high-quality, well-educated workforce is central to economic growth and development. Cape Coral’s growing population of about 200,000 is served by public and private higher education and secondary schools offering a full array of degree programs, levels and technical training.

Florida Gulf Coast University

Established in 1991 and opened in 1997, Florida Gulf Coast University has experienced rapid growth and success that have mirrored major gains across Southwest Florida over the past two-plus decades. The public university, located 30 minutes from Cape Coral in Fort Myers, leads Florida’s 12-member State University System in percentage of alumni employed in Florida after graduation, surpassing such well-known peers as the University of Florida and Florida State University. About 90 undergraduate, master’s and doctoral programs help feed Cape Coral and Southwest Florida’s diverse economic needs, as does FGCU’s consistently growing enrollment, which surpassed 15,000 students for the first time in 2018 and has capacity for more than 20,000. A scenic, vibrant young campus, complete with famed beach, lures a diverse cross-section of national and international students, as does the school’s celebrated sports teams, which earned FGCU the nickname “Dunk City.”

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Florida SouthWestern State College

Four campuses in Southwest Florida, including a main campus in Fort Myers, serve about 17,000 students in more than 45 bachelor’s, associate and certificate programs. Established in 1962, the former Edison Junior College conferred more than 3,000 degrees and certificates in 2018-2019 from its five schools, including Pure and Applied Sciences, Business and Technology, Education, and Health Professions.

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Private and Technical Colleges

A number of private and technical schools in Southwest Florida further serve Cape Coral’s sizable workforce and diverse economy.

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Lee County School District

The ninth-largest school district in Florida operates 96 schools, including eight elementary, six middle and four high schools in Cape Coral. The district also operates Cape Coral and Fort Myers technical colleges and Lee Virtual School.

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Cape Coral Charter School Authority

The City of Cape Coral oversees the charter school system that features two elementary, one middle and one high school. Combined enrollment is more than 3,000.

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