LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

« Return to Nominee List

Angel Thurston

Position: English Teacher
School: Triad Math and Science Academy
School District: Charter School
City, State: Greensboro, NC


Angel Thurston was nominated by a student who wished to remain anonymous.

From the beginning of her class, Ms. Thurston demands the best from her students. She makes sure they have everything they need from basic school supplies to food at home. Anybody who knows her knows she makes sure "Duke Power" is set up.

There are about 20 students in her school who can't eat lunch for a variety of reasons. Ms. Thurston makes sure everyone who needs a meal has one every day. Even when she was out for surgery, her students were her priority. She feeds anyone who needs it! Her classroom is like a home. She reprimands like a mom, corrects and edits like an English teacher, respects her students as young adults, keeps secrets unless they are harmful or illegal, and always gives her students some parent/teacher insight.

"We know she loves us and loves what she does," said her nominator. "She has this weird balance, she shares her weaknesses and struggles, and she asks for our help when she can't spell. She owns her mistakes and she makes her students laugh. When nobody understands and has your back, she does. She never wants attention, but deserves it."

In one day and one class, ten people will come to Ms. Thurston for assistance from other classes or for teachers, break downs, even supplies. She never says no, and it's rare she doesn't have what a student needs. Uniforms, socks, underwear, sandwiches, etc. Her nominator has witnessed her taking her own shoes off and giving them to a student.

Talk to any parent, any student, any teacher, or any one person in her school, and they'll tell you she has touched them and that she loves them. She holds everybody to a high standard, even the students who nobody else expects anything from. Ms. Thurston celebrates everything. She spends her money to celebrate her students with the "sho challenge," the "try it bet," and other teaching activities she makes up. She always practices students' names so she gets them right. Her student population includes many people from abroad.

"I know that without her, many of us would not know our value as black men and women or as people," the nominator said. "I know she makes me feel like the best person in the world when she looks at me. For some of us she has taken better care than our families have of us and it's just normal for her. She presses on."


Comments (25)


Denise Posted 2 months ago

Ms. Thurston has a genuine passion for what she teaches! Any parent, school, or student would benefit greatly from her presence.

Keigha Cummings Posted 2 months ago

Miss Thornton deserve this award she goes over and Beyond her duties to care for children that's not even hers she's not a normal teacher she put her children first before herself, she has that stubborn soul but it's the SOUL of LOVE she helped my son FueQuan Cromartie and the words Thank-you just not enough. We need more teachers like her who's there to help guide our future leaders and not just there for a paycheck. We Love You Mrs Thurston..

Larry Adams Posted 2 months ago

I've know this remarkable lady all her life, have worked side by side with her supporting he needs, welfare and academic progress for the most in need. She has a compassionate soul and to me is the black Mother Teresa

Ethan Troy Posted 2 months ago

Ms.Thurston is the best English teacher I’ve ever known.Her ability to help a student find themselves and align them into the right direction is unfathomable.She’s done everything ,from feeding kids in need from inside of her own class ,to giving away prizes for academic achievements.I’ve never known a person who was this passionate about the intellect of her students or the authenticity of the education they received. Some of my most memorable moments come from the privilege of sitting inside her classroom.She has inspired me to help others unconditionally. I’ve learned to be grateful and cherish the American school system, because there are others who are not as fortunate as I am to get a good education. There isn’t a better candidate to receive this honor other than Ms.Thurston.

Sam Peck Posted 2 months ago

Angela helped me in many ways when I moved to Greensboro and helped me get situated and showed me around. He was an amazingly friendly and gracious co-worker, Educator and friend. Thanks Angela

Tyler Walker Posted 2 months ago

Ms. Thurstin is a wonderful and giving person. I only wish I could have had a teacher as loving and caring as she is. I met her on a personal/ business level. I work for a home improvement store and we met when she was looking for materials to better her school and classroom. Once she learned of my daughter being in high school and having selective mutism, Ms. Thurston took it on herself to research and bring me materials to help my daughter. Not only that, but she helped by giving us the means for my daughter to attend college. I have THANKED GOD many times for Ms. Thurston. This world needs many more people of her character.

Angela A-W Posted 2 months ago

I've had the honor of teaching with Angel Thurston. She's overcome a great deal in terms of health issues, and she's done so with humor and grace. She's a wonderful example of strength in will and character. She's a great team player and she makes every interaction entertaining. I admire her for her laughter, wit, storytelling, creativity, perseverance, optimism, spirit, and energy. She's an incredible role model and mentor for her students and deserves to be celebrated.

Andrea Posted 2 months ago

Angel and I worked together my first two years of teaching. She's always super positive no matter the circumstances, and gives her all to her students. With her upbeat attitude, sense of humor, and creative ways of reaching each student, it's no wonder she's been nominated. And no doubt, she deserves this.

Escanor Posted 2 months ago

Mrs.Thurston is my ELA teacher. She is very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very veryvery very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very vvvery very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very vvery very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very vvery very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very vvery very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very vvery very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very vvery very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very vvery very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very vvvery very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very NICE

Lakisha Tucker Posted 3 months ago

Ms. Thurston, what an example of God's true love, the gift of giving. I have had the opportunity to work with you and be your friend. Your heart is one that is like the driven snow, PURE. You have a heart to do what you do. Your room is open daily, to give clothes, food, and a smiling face. You encourage the students by being transparent, allowing them to see that there is no success without struggle. Thank you for all you do for today's youth, helping them to develop into tomorrows future. You deserve this reward.

K. Engelbrecht Posted 3 months ago

Ms. Thurston makes me laugh....at her...at myself...at our crazy students. I've watched her settle ONLY for students' best while enduring great personal struggle. She even attended a dean meeting via phone from a hospital bed! Ms. Thurston, God has given you GREAT strength through GREAT struggle, and is using you to help our students achieve GREAT things!

Johnnie Rascoe Posted 3 months ago

After seeing Ms. Thurston up close, I have to say she cares so much for the students. I hope she can win this award, she deserves it!

Enayat Ibrahim Posted 4 months ago

I am Mrs. Ibrahim . I am one of the parents at TMSA. I strongly agree that Mrs. Thurston deserves this nomination. She is a great and amazing teacher who knows how to build a strong relationship between her and students' parents. She is a person who has a giving heart and she works hard to make her students learn in an interactive way and gain the knowledge that helpful for their lives. Thank you Mrs. Thurston .

Cassandra Simpson Posted 4 months ago

I just wanted to say that I know Ms Thurston when she came to our house to home school my granddaughter(Briona Siler). From the start I knew she genuinely cared for Briona's educational,emotional,and general well being.She treated my granddaughter as if she were her child! She would check on her and even come to the house on her days off(Saturday/Sunday) She really deserves this recognition. I wanted to send a letter about her to the school board. I'm so glad this portal is open to send her praises. Thank You Ms Thurston ----------We love you! Cassandra Simpson She is truly an "Angel"

Gabi Spiridon Posted 4 months ago

Mrs.Thurston- a true model, a WONDERFUL and an AMAZING person. She inspires every day and truly cares about those around her. Thank you!

Paul Stevens Posted 6 months ago

We can call her generous, selfless, courageous, ambitious, stubborn, and relentless. But what do you call someone who is all of that in order to benefit others. You call that person an Angel. I know because it's on Ms. Thurston's driver's license. It's cool when you can live up to your name.

Era Matkins-Barnett Posted 6 months ago

Teachers are more than teachers. Thank you Angel for all your hard work and dedication to our youth. It's people like you that lets them know they are important and do have a future to work hard for. Great Job.

Mya Green Posted 6 months ago

Ms.Thurston always thinks of others and puts them before herself. She does whatever she can for whoever she can.

Rhonda Lang Posted 6 months ago

I totally agree with the nominator. Ms. Thurston is a caring teacher that goes above and beyond to meet the needs of her students academically and socially. She "adopts" her students and deals with each one as if they were her own. She treats them all the same yet manages to meet each of them where they are. She works with students on their academics whenever they need it. She allows them to take refuge in her classroom from the cruelties of teenage life when needed but especially during lunch where she provides lunch for many. During that lunch period she may even slip in an educational movie that subtly brings awareness and fosters discussions and growth. She has even run groups on Saturdays with other staff members for students to come in and talk about their own struggles. She invites parents and community to come as guest speakers so students can gain insight into how to handle various situations they are facing. She has created a safe atmosphere where wisdom can be passed down. And I have seen first hand when she reaches out for help to meet the needs of her students in times of homelessness or in need of food. And she does all of these things out of pure goodness of heart no matter the status of her own health. It is certainly time for her to be recognized. She is an inspiration to all who meet her.

Kendal B. Posted 6 months ago

Ms.Thurston has gone above and beyond for many of her students. She is one of those teachers that are like your at school mom, we all admire her and love her. She has done so much for all of us. And her kindness should not go unnoticed.

Shaundra Roach Posted 6 months ago

Congrats Angel! You deserve it....any teacher that cooks lunch for their students every day is a life changer!!

LaToya Griggs Posted 6 months ago

Angel Thurston is my sister, I am not bias because she is my sister I am bias to her because of the woman that she is. Angel is the definition of strength! She has overcome so much in life, I have been with her thru so many surgerys. She conquered each one like a queen. She is an inspiration to everyone she meets and it is an honor to call her my sister.

Clayton Posted 6 months ago

You are one of my favorite teachers at TMSA you helped make English 1 interesting and fun

Jessica Langley Posted 6 months ago

I've seen Ms. Thurston interact with her students. As stated by the nominator, Ms. Thurston goes over and above for students. She is definitely made a positive impact on her students.

Crystal Cavalier Posted 6 months ago

Yes Ms. Thurston goes above and beyond.