Bishop Ryan High School graduate Matt Charley took the lessons he learned growing up in a family devoted to caring for children to heart.
Having three young siblings adopted from foster care helped Charley and his other siblings learn the importance of patience and compassion and selflessness, he said. Now he regularly volunteers his time with DreamCatchers, a baseball team for children with disabilities, and works with teenagers with disabilities, helping them with personal care and social skills. He also works part-time for Easter Seals.
Charley said he could see himself continuing to volunteer as he moves into adulthood.
Andrea Johnson/MDN •
Matt Charley graduated from Bishop Ryan High School Sunday.
Music has also been a big part of Charley's life. When he was younger, he and several of his siblings performed together as a musical group at different events. The family group broke up when his older twin sisters left for college two years ago, but now Charley continues to perform with other teens in three other music bands. He describes the music as kind of alternative pop. He plays guitar, piano and drums and sings too.
Charley has also participated in a lot of activities at Bishop Ryan, where he served as president of the senior class, and was active in the National Honor Society and Key Club and in the assistant chaplain program. This year the school has become even more focused on its Catholic mission under the guidance of a new school chaplain, and Charley said he likes the "hardcore Catholic" approach because it helps him focus on his faith.
Charley will attend the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn., this fall and is interested in majoring in philosophy, theology or music. He thinks he'd like to become a college professor.