AACT Member Spotlight: Apollonia Campbell

By AACT on July 6, 2022

Apollonia Campbell

Every month AACT spotlights a passionate member who is dedicated to enhancing chemistry inside and outside the classroom. This month, we spotlight Apollonia Campbell. She teaches chemistry and forensics at Brazosport High School in Freeport, TX.

Tell us about yourself.

I teach chemistry and forensics at Brazosport High School in Freeport, TX, as well as coaching soccer and cheer. I've been in education for 14 years, all of which have been in the high school setting. I have a bachelor's degree in Chemistry from Texas Southern University, and I'm certified to teach 4–12 Science and 4–8 Math. Outside of school, I have two children (a daughter Ariyana and a son Adrian) who keep me busy with all of their activities, but when I do find some free time I enjoy eating, dancing, working out, and spending time with my family. Fun fact: I danced in the 2001 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade with my high school dance team and band (Willowridge High School).

Why did you become a teacher? Did you always want to teach?

To be honest, I did not want to become a teacher; however, I've always had a love for school and a passion for learning. My dream job was to be a physical therapist. During high school, I was preparing to go that route. However, I was offered a full scholarship from the Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP), but I would have to major in chemistry first, then I could go to medical school. Throughout college, I earned money working as a substitute teacher and working with after-school programs. That's what sparked my interest in teaching, so after graduating from college, I became certified to teach.

What fuels your passion for science and teaching?

My passion for science is fueled by my love for the subject. It is an honor and a privilege to be able to come to work every day and do what I love. I am blessed to have the opportunity to share that love with my students and it brings me joy when I see them loving science just as much as I do. Teaching isn't for everybody and students can tell the difference between someone who cares and someone who's just going through the motions.

What do you do to remain current and bring the latest science into the classroom?

To stay current, I try to take a variety of professional development courses throughout the year and go to teaching and/or science conferences. I also read articles in ChemMatters and Science News.

Why did you become involved with AACT and what are the benefits of being involved?

I first became involved with AACT back in 2016, when I was invited to be a part of a Teacher Summit with AACT and Texas Dow Company. Through that experience, I was able to connect with other chemistry teachers from my area, as well as create and share resources. I use the resources from other teachers on the AACT website. In 2018, I had another great experience when I was invited to be a part of another Teacher Summit with teachers from all over the US, which allowed me to meet even more great chemistry teachers.

In three words, what would your students say they learned from you?

How to think.