I first met Edel Alonso as a freshman at Hart High School in 1990. She was a counselor and advisor to several clubs I belonged to. I was quiet, shy, and hated speaking in front of groups, but Alonso’s support and encouragement enabled me to “come out of my shell.” My sophomore year, she inspired me to run for an office for the International Club, a group she formed so students from different ethnic groups on campus would feel at home. This club also taught the student body about the many cultures that made up the Hart family. By the time I was a senior, I held the office of president, leading club meetings and speaking in front of groups during club-sponsored events. Alonso taught me how to be a leader!
Not only a counselor and advisor, Alonso was and is a kind-hearted person who cares for all students equally and is proud of each one as she sees them accomplish what they never thought they could.
Fast forward – several years ago, I reached out to her for some advice about educational options for my own child here in Santa Clarita. I was very hesitant but, guess what? She is the same old Dr. Alonso, always there for her students and the youth of the community. She still has those open arms that always made me comfortable.
Alonso has had a tremendous influence not only on me but also on thousands of students in the Santa Clarita Valley. She teaches them to believe in themselves and have confidence that they can reach whatever goals they set. I am thrilled to see her running for a second term on COC’s board of trustees, where her top priorities continue to be success and equity for all students.