LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Fay Angeles-Aguda

Position: Counselor
School: Nanakuli Elementary School
School District: Hawaii Public Schools
City, State: Waianae, HI

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Fay Angeles-Aguda was nominated by her colleague, Dennis Tynan.

Nanakuli Elementary School (NES) was very lucky in August of 2017 to have Fay Angeles start her new position as Counselor to over 400 students. Her years of experience as a high school counselor inspired her to want to work with younger children. She wanted to see if she could make more of a difference during a time in children's lives when patterns of behavior are just forming. And what a difference she has made in her short time at NES! Working collaboratively with teachers, EAs, and her school’s support staff, she has implemented many initiatives to benefit NES students. Perhaps the best example of her impact is her work on combating her school’s high absenteeism rate.

  • She has increased school-to-home communication via personalized letters when students start trending high in absences.
  • She has started a check-in system giving identified students stickers at recess and lunch times, and then providing them with brief end-of-quarter attendance get-togethers if they earn enough stickers during the reporting period.
  • She has spearheaded a team (including an administrator, a school nurse, a social worker, and herself) to conduct several home visits for students whose parents do not respond to her offers of assistance.

Due in large part to the effort that Ms. Angeles has spearheaded, her school's chronic absenteeism rate has decreased to 27 percent in her first year! She has done so much more. She is constantly in and out of classrooms developing relationships with students. On many days, Ms. Angeles can be found on the recess field assisting students to “play with aloha,” and she manages to run several small group counseling sessions every week for students identified as in need of various interventions.

"She is the embodiment of the Maya Angelou quote in her email signature: 'I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.' Because of the way Ms. Angeles has made all of us feel at Nanakuli Elementary School, she is a LifeChanger in our community," said Tynan.

Comments (19)

Gardo Garcia Posted over a year ago

A really well deserved nomination for the dedicated and caring counselor that you are. So proud of you my dear niece.

Eleyne Fia Posted over a year ago

The honor is well-deserved, congratulations Fay! Fay is an amazing counselor and a wonderful person. While there are so many ways to describe her, this is what I have observed throughout the years: F is for fantastic, fun and a great friend! As a counselor, Fay was fantastic! At our department meetings at Campbell, her input gave us insight and new ideas of how to tackle important and relevant issues at our school. She was the advocate for those who could not speak for themselves, and she always made sure her underrepresented population had a voice at the table. But it was not always about gloom and doom. Fay has a sense of humor that will make anyone laugh! She is a great friend, she is the one who always makes sure everyone keeps in touch! A is for awesome and all-around! Can't say enough about Fay being an awesome, all-around person! Counselor, friend, mother, aunty, role-model, an inspiration, community contributor - awesome Fay does it all! Y is for youth! Fay is an advocate for all the youth who come across her path. She relates to all ages, from the pre-K student to the high school senior, Fay knows how to differentiate and adapt to each child. In conclusion, Fay is a gem of a counselor. I can name all the initiatives that she has accomplished, with success. But as we know, a huge part of counseling is the relationships that they develop. Fay has changed the lives of too many to count, and a major part of that is because of the rapport she develops and the way she touches each person's life. Fay is well-deserving of the life changer award! I am honored to have had her touch my life!

Nellwyne Young Posted over a year ago

Fay is truly an awesome and inspiring counselor and friend. As a colleague at JCHS she has always embodied the true definition of what a school counselor should be and has always fought for what is right for ALL students. Our loss at JCHS is NES gain and although I was so sad to see her leave I know that she is doing great things for NES. It warms my heart that she is being rightfully recognized for all the different initiatives she has implemented and is being supported by the awesome NES administration, faculty and staff. Congratulations my friend . . . . YOU deserve this recognition!!!!!

Serena Lakalaka Posted over a year ago

Congratulations Fay! NES is lucky to have you! I’m so grateful to have worked along side with you since 2005. An amazing counselor, friend, and co-worker! An EXCEPTIONAL LIFE CHANGER for sure!!

Chelly Posted over a year ago

Congratulation Fey!! The Lord bless you with many talents but one that Shine more is changing children lives and others. Keep up the Awesome Job!! Good and perfect gift come from above. James 1:17

Rowena Martinez Posted over a year ago

As long has I have known Fay, she has never wavered from her dedication to helping whoever walked through her office door or classroom. Whether it be working with students at Nanakuki Elementary , Campbell High School or even teaching college students at Hawaii Pacific University, Counselor Fay never wavered from her commitment to using and creating best practices to help her students with life choices. She has become a valued friend to many and walks the talk when it comes to doing what is best for kids and yes her co-workers too!

Genesis Vivas Posted over a year ago

Congratulations Fay! Keep up the great work & dedications in helping guide these kid’s minds & hearts in growing up to be future teachers, doctors, social workers, nurses, & maybe even a future president:) Teachers plant the seeds & nurture dreams! Thanks for all you do!:)

Barbara Posted over a year ago

Yes! Fay has always gone above and beyond to reach any student as well as her colleagues. Her dedication to helping others reach their full potential is one of her many attributes. She’s flexible and welcomes change while ready to take the lead or be a supportive teammate in completing a task or set of tasks. We are so happy others will be able to recognize her talents. Congratulations Fay!! We look forward for future achievement awards.

Mohala De Lima Posted over a year ago

Impressively & undeniably, Fay Angeles serves countless many in tremendous ways thus deeming her an exceptional life changer of the year! Fay’s generous, polite, compassionate and smileriffic demeanor is sure to captivate the interests & hearts of those within her presence so much so, that her warm welcoming office space comfortably embraces all of its guests in the same way. Fay’s creativity level is often demonstrated through her effectively thoughtful ideas ranging from daily student attendance Check ins to Sunny Money student incentives to providing personalized student support while extending empowering support efforts to families as well. In addition, Fay’s creatively written attendance letters and genuinely encouraging phone calls or home visits to families evidently displays her level of pure heart and eager mind as she continuously provides effective solutions beyond best practices, which adequately fulfills various needs that are unique to the Nanakuli Coast. I am truly honored to know, work closely with, and be a team member of Fay Angeles for she is a remarkable role model, influential leader, and phenomenal life changer to countless many who deserve, need, and value Fay the most! Your constant work never goes unnoticed and your caring heart is aways felt Fay! Thank you, thank you, thank YOU!

Kay Taylor Posted over a year ago

What an honor this must be for Fay. I’m so proud of her accomplishments and good deeds. She is so deserving of this and more. To know her is to love her!!! Congratulations My BFF.

Pam Divine Posted over a year ago

What an awesome honor! ... and we thought you were just an awesome hula dancer! For all that you do to make your students, family, friends, hula ohana, and even strangers, feel good about themselves, their life and what they do, we are all truly grateful to have shared a portion of our lives with you! Thank you!

Jacqueline Smith Posted over a year ago

Fay Angeles is definitely a life changer to many including me. She is a talented and universal counselor. Ms. Angeles has a special gift in reaching out to kids of all ages from Pre-K to 12th graders and beyond. It is because of her I am able to flourish my career in school counseling. As my site-supervisor, I’ve learned from her all the necessary and gifted skills to be a successful school counselor. She changed my life, she is my guardian angel counselor, and I hope I am able to reach to be a great counselor as her one day.

Joseph Atimua Posted over a year ago

Great person to nominate. She was my teacher and counselor when I was at campbell. She has been a great mentor for me then and still is today. I have learned a lot from Fay and she definitely deserves it.

Kevin Marshall Posted over a year ago

I’ve known Fay for over 20 years and everything Mr. Tynan who she is and has been. She has a truly compassionate heart and a desire to lift other up. It’s great to read about the impact she is making in these young people’s lives.

Phyllis Wong Posted over a year ago

I have known Fay Angeles since 2005 and had the pleasure of working with her at Campbell High School. She was/is awesome to work with as a teacher, counselor, and colleague. I would describe her as firm and flexible, able to keep it real, student-oriented, nurturing, and compassionate with a quick wit and wicked sense of humor; not just dedicated to students, but to her co-workers too. Fay is passionate - eager to be of service and thrives on it. She was indeed my go to person for student info and help. I really miss her "can do" attitude and overall presence here. Campbell's loss is for sure Nanakuli Elementary School's gain. NES, you have a treasure - keep her safe and close. CONGRATULATIONS FAY!!! You weren't expecting this nomination, but YOU deserve to WIN it! Best wishes!

Adele Mier Posted over a year ago

Fay is a HUGE advocate for our Keiki here at Nanakuli Elementary School. Only being here for one year, it is apparent her heart is for our students. She strives everyday to develop strategic plans and unique ways to help our Keiki heal, deal with trauma, cope with life and resolve issues that may be affecting them at school or home. Her office is very welcoming with BOLD and inspiring wording. She created a beautiful and inviting space for the students to come in and sit with her. She has many programs on the school level which is created to the individual needs of the child. Some just want to talk. Some need a hand to hold, a shoulder to cry on and someone to walk them to class, that's Fay. Some students want lunch bunch and group sessions with her and she executes all of their needs and wants. She has built a strong rapport with the staff and students. Her availability and passion for the students never goes unnoticed. She is truly a counselor from heaven. She is an integral part of our school's SWAT team (Student Wellness Action Team) and continues to participate in all home visits, homeless family support, IEP meetings, Parent/teacher conferences and more. She is also a great friend and colleague. I cannot say enough about Ms. Fay.

Kehau Wong Posted over a year ago

Aloha! I would just like to say that Ms. Angeles is a great co worker to work with and role model for the students here at Nanakuli Elementary. She is not just Ms. Angeles, but referred to as "aunty" by many of the students here, because of her caring and nurturing nature. "Can we have Lunch Bunch (sit-in lunch) with Ms. Angeles?," is a recurring question by my students.

Rick Yamashiro Posted over a year ago

Congratulations Fay! You are awesome my friend! NES is so very lucky to have you! We all miss you so much and wish you continued success with everything you do!

Maria Manandic Posted over a year ago

NES is fortunate to have Ms. Angeles, she’s upbeat and always spreading that positive vibes! She is definitely a life changer for our students at Nanakuli Elementary School.