Charles D. Ogden IV, a senior at TERRA Environmental Research Institute, is the school’s Silver Knight nominee in Mathematics. He says he enjoys math, but does have to work at it. When he attends college, he plans to pursue a degree in Finance.
Ogden has applied to 12 elite schools, including George Washington University, his top choice, followed by William & Mary.
He has already been accepted to the University of Florida.
Ogden’s GPA is strong and his resume is rich with leadership and community service initiatives. He says he has lost track of his exact number of community service hours, but his total is well above 300.
As president of the Interact Club, a club dedicated to service projects, Ogden has led initiatives that have benefited underprivileged children and families in need. Under his leadership, the club’s annual backpack and school supply drive has grown dramatically.
“When I first joined the Interact Club, we were collecting about 25 backpacks per year filled with school supplies,” Ogden said. “This year, we increased the number of backpacks to 60!”
In addition to the 60 backpacks collected in August and September, the club collected an additional 30 backpacks later in the school year, says Ogden. He also took the initiative to include water bottles with each backpack, so the children would have access to clean drinking water. The school supplies were distributed to children in schools in Manzanillo, Columbia and Anse a Pitre, Haiti by the nonprofit organization Bio Planet USA.
“We received pictures of the children receiving our donated supplies,” Ogden said. “It was rewarding to see the outcome and the children’s happy faces.”
Ogden and the Interact Club also host an annual holiday toy drive and Thanksgiving food drive to benefit local children and families in need, including TERRA families.
“We collected so much food this year that we also were able to donate to local organizations that feed the homeless,” Ogden said.
Ogden puts his math skills to good use. As a member of Mu Alpha Theta, he participates in math competitions and tutors students in Algebra I, Geometry and Algebra II. He also serves as vice president of the Future Business Leaders of America and belongs to TERRA’s prestigious National Honor Society – another club that stresses community involvement. Ogden and his fellow club members perform at least one service project each month, such as writing letters to active duty soldiers, helping with special events at local elementary schools and making food baskets to donate to those in need.
Ogden has played tennis most of his life, starting when he was a toddler. He plays on TERRA’s varsity tennis team and also played on the school’s badminton team until his schedule became too full to juggle studies, service and multiple sports. He has earned TERRA’s Athletic Award for his achievements in both sports.
Although Ogden’s family and friends call him Charlie, he honors his heritage and fourth generation name by wearing it proudly – literally. “I have a tattoo of the Roman numeral four – IV,” he said.
By Nancy Eagleton