Matthew Chan: The man who can
By CAROL LI
The score is tied, with seconds left on the clock. He feels the players rush past him, and with adrenaline filled confidence, decides to shoot the three-pointer. The ball swoops swiftly into the basket, and the crowd goes wild.
He’s the man who can. He is Matthew Chan.
Junior Matthew Chan is the vice president of the Associated Student Body (ASB) and participates in the Wilson Basketball program. With many engaging extracurriculars, Chan’s life is anything but dull.
Chan’s interest in leadership stemmed from elementary school, which motivated him to join ASB in his sophomore year of high school.
“Even as a young child, I was interested in being the voice of the student body. In elementary school, I was my class representative and in middle school, I was the ASB president for two years,” Chan said. “Seeing Wilson’s ASB active involvement on campus also made me eager to become a part of the program.”
Undoubtedly, Chan believes that ASB has made his high school experience very positive, as the memories made with the organization are unforgettable.
“[ASB] has made me a better leader since the program has taught me to plan for large events like homecoming,” Chan said. “The best part of ASB is the people. I am [extremely lucky] to be able to call them my second family since they have been there for me in difficult times.”
As Vice President, Chan has many ideas to offer in planning events for the student body.
“This position allows me to organize and facilitate important events such as business days, orientations and rallies. These events ensure that students feel welcomed when they are on our campus,” Chan said.
Furthermore, Chan also invests much of his time playing basketball for the Wilson team, with his interest in the sport beginning at a very young age.
“I started playing basketball when I was four years old, and I fell in love,” Chan said. “I also enjoy watching professional basketball as well as the element of camaraderie in the sport. Being able to play basketball is truly a blessing to me.”
This season, Chan’s hard work paid off, leading to multiple accomplishments as well as immense improvement in his basketball skills.
“Before winter break started, my team beat Los Altos High School for the first time and I scored twenty-four points, which was a great victory for me,” Chan said. “My coach was extremely proud since this was also his first time [seeing Wilson] beat Los Altos.”
Moreover, Chan sees his fellow peer as an inspiration in cultivating his own basketball style and skills.
“[While playing basketball], I look up to [classmate] Ryan Uyeki. Not only is he my best friend for life, but we also play the same position and have a similar playing style, so I [often] look to him for guidance.”
In addition, Chan’s close-knit group of friends never fail to find creative ways to cheer him on and put a smile on his face.
“When I was presenting my speech as a candidate for [ASB] vice president, my friends stood in the crowd and wore shirts that spelled out my name, making me feel [very special and appreciated],” Chan said.
To balance the workload between school, ASB and basketball, Chan makes sure to manage his free time efficiently.
“On days where I have basketball practice or ASB events at night, I will go home to finish my homework first, so I have time to focus on my [extracurriculars],” Chan said. “To re-energize, I also [occasionally] treat myself to a beauty nap for about three hours, but only if I do not have any homework.”
One particular individual in Chan’s life has always pushed him from the sidelines, giving Chan encouragement to pursue his dreams.
“The person I looked up to the most was my dad, before he passed away. Whether it was grades or basketball, he always made it clear that he cared about everything I did,” Chan said. “[For example], my dad would [make the effort] to be at every game I played to support me. When I watch the videos of my games, I can hear him cheering in the crowd, and I am grateful I had such a great [father].”
Consequently, Chan motivates others who are going through a difficult time in their life to find happiness through their loved ones.
“[Some advice I would give] is to rely on [people] who [truly] care about your [well-being]. Taking care of yourself is also important, and remember that there will always be better days,” Chan said.
In the future, Chan plans to attend a four-year university and pursue a job that help individuals who are less fortunate.
“I want to attend a UC close to home, and major in law to become a district attorney. That way, I can have a voice in something bigger than myself, ” Chan said.
Despite the difficulties Chan faces, he always preserves with a positive mindset and attitude; with these characteristics, it is easy to see why he is so well-liked by the student body.