This year, the Kingswood Oxford community is excited to welcome many new faculty to campus; among these new faces is KO’s new Upper School counselor Felicia Velez. Ms. Velez is thrilled to be at KO and can’t wait to meet and build connections with both students and faculty members alike.
Ms. Velez has been working as a social worker for 30 years and is eager to share her wisdom with the KO community. “It’s an amazing feeling to make a difference in someone else’s life,” Ms. Velez said.
The main goal Ms. Valez has this year is ensuring that everyone knows that her office is a safe, welcoming place open to all those in the KO community. “My mission is to provide [students] with all the support that they need to make it a successful school year,” she said. “I will be helping them learn to manage their stressors, which could be anything from depression, anxiety, family conflict, friendships, being overwhelmed, and more.” She hopes to be an advocate for all students so that they feel safe and heard, and she encourages everyone to visit her in her office located at the bottom of Roberts.
Ms. Velez will also be teaching VQV class to Form 3 students, which is centered around providing students with the tools they need to flourish at KO early on in their high school careers to ensure that they can live up to their full potential as students, athletes, artists, and individuals.
Outside of school, Ms. Velez has many hobbies, and one of her favorites is making jewelry. She is currently teaching jewelry-making classes in her town. “I’m very crafty and I use this as my self care in my down time, and I really enjoy teaching,” Ms. Velez said.
After her first month at KO, Ms. Velez’s biggest challenge has been trying to learn everyone’s name and recognize everyone’s faces, a task that has been made even more difficult due to masks. But despite these little challenges, Ms. Velez has greatly cherished her time at KO thus far. “My most rewarding success so far is seeing students leaving my office smiling and feeling much better than when they arrived,” Ms. Velez said.
We are so excited to welcome Ms. Velez to KO and cannot wait to see the immense impact that she is sure to have on the community.