Meet Our Alumni: Angelina Kossoff Blazes Trails in Environmental Science and Advocacy

Laurel Springs Spotlight


A proud alumna of Laurel Springs’ Class of 2017, Angelina Kossoff is quick to emphasize the influence a fully flexible, virtual learning environment had on her career trajectory and personal growth. From her earliest days at Laurel Springs in the 4th grade to her current teaching role at Kennesaw State University in Environmental Science and Ecology, Angelina’s story is one that illustrates how unique passions and interests, when nurtured, can flourish into futures packed with purpose and possibility.

Where the Great Outdoors is Your Classroom

Angelina's love for the outdoors isn't just a hobby; it's a way of life. "I’ve always loved nature, and being outside is so important to me," she shares. “I grew up playing tennis, and also played in college at Eckerd College, so I was always outdoors growing up – doing my homework, biology labs, studying.”

This passion for exploring and spending time in nature was nourished at Laurel Springs, where the full flexibility of online learning allowed her to be outside as much as she wanted.

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Laurel Springs Success Story

Angelina reflects on her experience at Laurel Springs with joy and gratitude:

“I am so grateful for my time at Laurel Springs. It truly shaped my career and hobbies. The flexibility allowed me to pursue my passions both inside and outside of the (virtual) classroom, I made lifelong friendships with people from all over the world, was part of clubs where I got to meet like-minded peers, and my mentors and teachers continuously inspired me. The versatility of virtual learning at LSS spurred my love of the outdoors and the environment, and ultimately led me to my current position as an instructor of environmental science and ecology at Kennesaw State University.”

Angelina participated in the Equestrian Club, Photography Club, Model United Nations, and National Honor Society – emphasizing how Laurel Springs was so much more than a place just for learning. It was a community that encouraged her to pursue her interests, too!

“My sister also attended Laurel Springs and was 4 years older than me, so I have so many memories from both of our Year-End Celebration events. Prom, graduation, and meeting friends in person for the first time are things I’ll never forget.”

Angelina mentions how she still keeps in touch with friends from Laurel Springs and makes an effort to meet up with them when she travels to their city.

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Making a Difference on Campus

Angelina graduated from Laurel Springs in 2017 and attended Eckerd College, graduating with a degree in Environmental Science and triple minors in Sustainability, Marketing, and Management. While on campus, she interned for the Reduce Single-Use Project on campus, which was funded by a NOAA Marine Debris grant,  and spearheaded the ‘Break Free From Plastics Pledge’, leading efforts to reduce single-use plastic and eventually banning the purchase of non-essential single-use plastics on campus.

She furthered her studies at the University of Michigan School for Environment and Sustainability, earning an M.S. with dual specializations in Geospatial Data Science and Ecosystem Science and Management (Conservation Ecology). While at U of M, Angelina received funding to travel to Greece for her master’s thesis, where she conducted a 2-month research project on the impacts of introduced rabbits on uninhabited island ecosystems. The manuscript is currently under review for publication!

From Student to Educator

Today, Angelina teaches at Kennesaw State University in Georgia – leading an ecology lecture, multiple lab sections, and a course called Science, Society and the Environment. “I love teaching,” she says. “I love having the opportunity to share the importance of environmental conservation and often challenge my students with sustainability efforts so they can make an impact in their communities, too.”

Angelina notes how Laurel Springs successfully prepared her to communicate effectively in her field: “It’s so important to know how to communicate and interact with organizations I work with. I have to be able to communicate with people outside of my field as a scientist. Laurel Springs taught me how to articulate myself effectively, virtually, and in-person. It taught me how to relate to others, speak confidently, and intentionally connect.”

When asked how she empowers her students, she shares that she encourages them to get involved in as much as they can: “When you immerse yourself in your community, you’re bound to meet like-minded people!” She also harps on the importance of setting reachable goals, rewarding yourself along the way, and taking the time to celebrate accomplishments. “I’d give this advice to anyone at Laurel Springs, as well!” she emphasizes. “Laurel Springs is fostering community left and right – my hope is that all students lean into that.”

What’s Next for Angelina

Angelina looks forward to her outdoor labs at Kennesaw State and continuing to inspire her students to make a difference. "I’m really looking forward to visiting my sister in California and my family in Florida this summer as well," she says. “I love to travel. I also love hiking and getting outside with my rescue dog, Lucy!”

Her journey from Laurel Springs student to environmental advocate and educator is a beautiful example of how a fully flexible, online learning environment can open doors to a world of possibilities – particularly ones in alignment with an individual’s unique passions and ambitions. To learn more about Laurel Springs School, join us for a Virtual Open House or contact an Admissions Coordinator to have a more personalized conversation.

As a fellow Laurel Springs Alum, if you’d like to connect with Angelina, you can find her on LSS Alumni Connect!

About Laurel Springs School

Laurel Springs is a fully accredited, private online school for K-12 students. With a premier college-prep curriculum including AP and Honors courses, an ever-expanding schedule of in-person and virtual events, and a global student community spanning over 100 countries, we’re ranked as one of the top online private schools in the nation.

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