Schaupp Urges Homerooms to Hear Trystan on Thursday

Elizabeth Bolin, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

Lately the halls of Notre Dame Academy have been filled with rumors and whispers of the changes to come next school year, particularly with homerooms.

But the year is not over yet.

On Thursday, May 3, homerooms will have the opportunity to attend a talk from Trystan Willems, a local man living with Cerebral Palsy.  The 11:20-11:50 “time with Trystan” will be in the auditorium.

“He just has such an amazing message. I will never forget the first time I met him because he made such an impression on me and completely changed the way I look at people who have conditions like CP,” said Elizabeth Schaupp.

A junior and the student behind his NDA appearance, Schaupp met Willems when writing her Literary Journalism paper for Honors Sophomore English.

“I wanted to bring him here because I think that people at NDA could learn something from his story and his message,” she said. “I’m not sure if people really know what CP is, and I think it’s important to understand what these people have gone through and what they are capable of.”

Cerebral Palsy is a chronic condition marked by muscle impairment that can cause difficulties in movement, speech and hearing for those who are afflicted.

Schaupp was introduced to Trystan through a neighbor who worked at the CP center and was close with Trystan’s mother.

“I didn’t know what exactly to expect when I talked to him, but he knew what to do.”

Trystan travels around speaking about CP and has attended conferences with hundreds of people. In Schaupp’s original interview with Trystan, he discussed the reasons he chooses to go out and speak to people, especially in a school environment.

“I aim to educate people about special needs and show everyone that people with physical issues are the same on the inside as they are on the inside. I also want people to focus on good things in their lives,” he said.

Trystan also shared with Schaupp that his current goal is to write his book.

It was not an easy road to make this event happen. Schaupp explained the steps she took to get Trystan to NDA.

“It was when I went to Mrs. Brown that things really started happening.”  She then met with the principal and Senora Dory multiple times after that to iron out the details.

“Even though the event is not mandatory, I think that people would benefit a lot from coming.” she said. “This man is someone who has inspired me, and I want to share his inspiration with the rest of my school.”