Student in the spotlight — Charlie Gilbertson

Involved Lenihan student enjoys reading, sports, youth group

T-R PHOTO BY ADAM SODDERS - Lenihan sixth-grader Charlie Gilbertson stands next to a Ricochet bulletin board. He got involved with the service club in fifth grade and enjoys giving back to the community.

Keeping busy and helping others is what one Lenihan Intermediate School sixth-grader does best.

Charlie Gilbertson enjoys sports like swimming and baseball, fellowship with his church youth group, reading and providing community service through Lenihan’s leadership group, Ricochet.

Charlie said he enjoys Ricochet because the group is “trying to make people happy and feel good, and then giving back to the community” and has raised funds for the Animal Rescue League, the Splash Pad Project and more. The group also helps at sports concession stands and holds events, like school dances, to provide money for local causes.

Math and science teacher Brandon Goldman said he is impressed with Charlie’s involvement, both in Ricochet and in class.

“He’s always active in the classroom, he participates 100 percent of the time,” Goldman said.

He said Charlie gets his homework in on time and sometimes even gets it turned in ahead of time.

When he is not at school or helping out with Ricochet, Charlie said he is involved in sports, particularly swimming and baseball.

“My mom was a swimmer when she was in high school … I just started to do swim lessons, and then after that I started to do the YMCA Blue Wave,” he said.

Charlie said he plans to swim for the Bobcats at Miller Middle School and Marshalltown High School in the coming years. When he hits the baseball diamond in the spring, Charlie said he prefers to play at second base or shortstop.

Charlie is also actively involved in youth group at Grace Church.

“It’s a fun place to go, a good environment,” he said. “It’s fun to learn about God there.”

When he finds himself with some free time, Charlie said he likes to build with Legos, particularly scenes and characters from the Star Wars and Avengers fictional universes.

He said he also enjoys picking up a good fantasy book, and likes the Harry Potter and Percy Jackson series.

Goldman also said Charlie is a good role model for his peers and “has a very bright future.”