The Southwest Florida Young Professionals Group announces the launch of the organization’s web portal at www.ypswfl.com, offering young professionals (YPs), ages 20-40, in Southwest Florida a single source for information on area events, activities and interests for this very specific affinity group.
In 2013 the Horizon Council Workforce Task Force recognized an emerging need to create awareness of what Southwest Florida has to offer the growing number of young professionals in the region. The council commissioned a study that found YPs who move to the area have a difficult time engaging
with other YPs since information about events and activities was limited. The task force took on the challenge of developing a solution. Working together with community leaders and the YP audience, they created the Southwest Florida Young Professionals Portal.
“Representatives from the Bonita Springs Chamber of Commerce-Young Professionals, Young Professionals, the Greater Fort Myers Chamber of Commerce Leadership NEXT and the Naples Young Professionals worked together to seek funding, secure a vendor and develop the portal,” said Dr. Guido Minaya, chair of the YP portal initiative.
The portal was funded by Chico’s FAS, Inc., Lee Memorial Health System and a grant from the Southwest Florida Community Foundation.
The portal, which will allow young professionals from across Southwest Florida grow their business and personal connections, was produced by Atilus, a web design and internet marketing company based in Bonita Springs, owned by young professionals.
“Atilus understands the goals of the group and was the best candidate to create this flexible communication tool,” said Dr. Minaya. “With input from a committee and based on research, the YP Portal offers quick and easy access to current and upcoming events and most importantly resources for housing, jobs, volunteering, and so much more.”
“In addition to growing our network and ease to connect with our peers, it will allow us to give back to the community through volunteering for various civic causes,” said Joe Nugent, The News-Press’ 2016 Young Professional of the Year. “All of these things will ensure that YP’s will live, work and play in Southwest Florida for many years to come.”
“We all know that communities come in all varieties and engage across many platforms,” said Sarah Owen, president and CEO of the Southwest Florida Community Foundation. “The Community Foundation is all about bringing people together to create a more vibrant region.”
The Community Foundation is the backbone organization for the FutureMakers Coalition, a regional initiative to transform the workforce in Southwest Florida. This initiative supports the young professional demographic in a great effort to retain them in Southwest Florida, according to Owen.
To access the portal, go to www.ypswfl.com.