Matt Wilhelm performed at Hawthorn Middle School North in Vernon Hills, Illinois. The entire student body of about 600 students in sixth, seventh, and eighth grade attended the assembly. Here are some highlights and take aways from the students.

“Your speech was very inspiring to my friends and I. After you visited our school we were all talking about how we could be the change in the world, talking in a way we never had, a way in which we would actually do something. Putting myself into you shoes made me think another way, a feeling I’ve never felt.”

A letter from a middle school student.
A letter from a middle school student.

“The past few weeks at my school kids have been more kind, helpful, and caring after sharing your message.”

“Thank you for inspring me and others not to give up. Thank you for making a difference and changing lives. This means a lot to people.”

“Your speech really did make an impact on many students. It makes me remember there’s a light even when the path gets dark. It was truly inspiring.”

“The things you said helped me realized that I would never succeed if I didn’t try, that even if I wasn’t good at first, I would only fail if I gave up.”