Northwest teacher teaches her students how to save lives

Angela+Hamilton+taking+the+blood+pressure+of+a+practice+dummy+in+her+Nursing+Fundamentals+class.

Photos courtesy of Angela Hamilton

Angela Hamilton taking the blood pressure of a practice dummy in her Nursing Fundamentals class.

On the outside of the old building, beyond the bus parking lot, there is a set of trailers that many students are unaware of. The health science trailers. Even more unknown to most people are the teachers inside these trailers.

Angela Hamilton has been the Nursing Fundamentals and Health Science 2 teacher at Northwest for 3 years now. She began her teaching career in 2007 at Southern Guilford High School.

“I love interacting with teenagers. I love sharing information that I have and (my) experiences. Because teenagers’ minds are like sponges. They just soak it up,” Hamilton said. “Adults are more close-minded whereas young adults are just like sponges.”

Hamilton chose a career in nursing mainly because she wanted to help people. She’s always known she wanted to be a nurse, but years later, another career opportunity came to her.

We have very high expectations of our students and we strive to raise the bar for them.”

— Angela Hamilton

“I worked for about 22 years in cardiac nursing. And during that time, I always had a desire to teach. So as my children began to get older, I kept thinking about that and God kept leading me in this direction and I kept fighting it because I loved what I was doing,” Hamilton said. “And it just fell in my lap.”

Patsy Long, the previous Health Science and Fundamentals of Nursing teacher at Northwest, asked Hamilton to fill her position when she retired.

“(Long) wanted me to carry on the program because my values were similar to hers.  She wanted that same kind of program to continue. So, she kind of hand-picked me,” Hamilton said.

The best part about Hamilton’s job is watching her students succeed and move on to bigger and better things in their careers as healthcare workers.

“Four of my previous students are in medical school. I’ve had numerous other students actually succeed, and now they’re carrying on my legacy of being a RN,” Hamilton said. “When my students pass and get their CNA, (seeing) their face and their smile; (I love to see) their sense of complete accomplishment.”

Hamilton has also worked outside of hospitals and the classroom, still doing what she can for others using her unique skills.

“I worked at an agency out of High Point called Open Door Ministries, (during the time I was there) it served veterans or anyone that was homeless, dealing with substance abuse. I did a lot of their nursing for them and that was just very touching,” Hamilton said.

Hamilton’s students have always had an appreciation for her not only as an outstanding teacher, but also as a kindhearted person.

Hamilton standing by her podium after teaching CPR to her Nursing Fundamentals class. (Photos courtesy of Angela Hamilton)

“My students last year gave me surprise birthday party in my classroom. That was a shock. They had decorated my entire room and they had tons of food and balloons and I was totally unaware that they were doing that,” Hamilton said. “That’s my most recent fondest memory.”

Hamilton enjoys teaching, but she finds that the greatest value in her job is that her students truly succeed in life.