Ms. Strong: Supporting Her Students Through Adversity


IB and AP social studies teacher, Angelica Strong, is loved by many not only for her outside-of-the-box, engaging lessons but also for her passion and heart for her students. Her journey to Spring Valley was not easy, as she had to grow up overnight, becoming a full-fledged adult at only the age of 16. While this adversity was challenging, it also opened her perspectives and allowed her to challenge notions in her own life and the world. 

“I think [this adversity] made me a lot more aware of different points of view, just because I realized how difficult life could be just by living through that,” Strong said.

One thing that got her through this adversity was her teachers in her Junior and Senior year of high school. Not only were they there for her and understanding of her situation, but they also made her enjoy coming to school. This positive impact her teachers had on her life sparked her passion for teaching. Her proudest moment was when she graduated college; Looking forward to her future had always been her biggest motivation and becoming a teacher was the next step in her life.

“ … it really felt like all my hard work was coming to fruition, I was going to get a job,” Strong said. 

As a female teacher, there is another array of adversity that Ms. Strong has felt in regards to her position, however, she sees that this diverge seems to be getting closer to closing.

“It’s hard to differentiate yourself as a good teacher in a district that kind of puts a bit more value on male teachers… I am seeing more of a trend towards not whether this teacher is female or male but rather are they a good instructor and I love that,” Strong said. 

Strong is not only filled with talent in what she does, but with passion about teaching and supporting students. This passion is seen by so many, including her fellow colleagues. 

“What I love about working with Ms. Strong is witnessing her dedication to teaching and her students,” Model United Nations and history teacher Kellinee Barber said. “She has truly inspired me to want to help students become well-educated, active, and passionate members of our society.  She is an amazing teacher and person. It is a  privilege to work with Ms. Strong.”

Strong has high expectations for her students because she believes that they are capable of anything that they want to do. She truly wants her students to be the best people she believes that they can be. 

“I want them to be able to go on and fix all the problems that are in the world and I believe that, otherwise I would not be in this profession,” said Strong.

Strong’s classes are a favorite among students at Spring Valley and through her academically challenging, yet interactive activities, it’s clear that she prepares lessons with her students in mind. Senior IB student, Steven Fidanque, has had Strong’s classes for three years now and has felt enhanced as a student with her as his teacher. 

“The lessons are definitely more engaging for students and she takes real world events and turns them into meaningful discussions,” Fiqanque said. “She is really helpful in learning the hard concepts. She makes sure to take her time and read over your stuff and provides really good feedback.”

Strong is always here to support her students and is here to remind them that anything that is troubling them in their lives is temporary, and that when they get through it everything will end up okay. 

“[When you get through it] you will be able to handle adversity with ease.” Strong said. “I already went through my first hardship when I was 16 years old, it really set me up to be able to handle anything that comes at me.”

When you see her in the hallway, make sure to say “hi” or “good morning”!