The Gift of a Voice

Senior Joey Schmidt has been acknowledged by colleges for his performance on the stage and in his AP classes.


Leah Craver

Joey Schmidt (12) practices in the Joe O’Malia Performing Arts Center in anticipation of The SpongeBob Musical. Schmidt shines inside and outside of the classroom.

Joey Schmidt has been recognized for numerous aspects, specifically his talent in music and his achievements in the classroom. When his time on the Hill ends, Joey will have completed 7 Advanced Placement (AP) courses. These completed courses will allow him the opportunity to skip some of his necessary freshman courses for college. 

Upon his arrival to Cathedral and the music program, Joey was very uncertain of what his next steps would be. Since he joined Cathedral choirs, many notable changes have occurred. Previously only having one all-female show choir, Cathedral has added a new mixed show choir which Joey joined. 

Joey said, “Settling on music was a lot more difficult than you would expect it to be for me, but, when I realized it, everything clicked. It was really nice to have that foundation of knowing where I am going from here.” 

He plans to major in music education and possibly double major in vocal performance. Joey has looked at a large number of schools which cater to his music career. Through this search, he has narrowed down his college choices to Ohio State University, Indiana University and University of Cincinnati. After college, Joey is not 100% sure of the specifics, but knows that he wants to be a performer and/or use his teaching certification to become a choir director.

I can’t imagine him doing anything else.

— Megan Schmidt

Advanced Placement classes are an option given to students to incorporate into their schedules. Schmidt took advantage of this opportunity and will be able to utilize it in his future. 

Mrs. Kim Carver is an AP Coach and English teacher here at Cathedral High School. She said, “The state of Indiana and some of the other Midwest states have state laws that say ‘if you are going to a state university or college, they have to give you some kind of credit for a passed AP exam’. The sort of credit they give to you is up to the college. Obviously, higher SAT scores get you higher credits. Because that is the case, I feel like more and more of the other kinds of colleges are starting to see that they are going to need to start accepting more of the credits.”

Carver said, “For Joey, going into a field like music, like he wants to, it is so helpful to get all of these basic freshman level classes out of the way. Because he is so intelligent, it was pretty easy for him to do that, to get that leg up so he can go straight into music classes, classes that he will love, instead of continuing what he has been doing his entire career in school, which is mostly taking classes which he was required to take.” 

Joey had not always been convinced that he wanted to carry out his passion for music at the next level. Recently, he was stopped at a red light and considered the possibility of fulfilling a music career in college. This small moment could shape his future education and career accomplishments. 

Megan Schmidt

He said, “It really was not until summer of last year where I was literally singing in my car, stopped at the red light of 56th and Binford, and I was like ‘oh my God’, this is what I want to do with the rest of my life. I don’t know why it took me so long to realize because anyone that knows me knows that I am always singing. I pretty much have sung everyday since fourth grade. I am glad I realized because if I had gotten to college and missed out on being certain in what I wanted to major in, then that would have been really challenging.”

Although Joey has completed a plethora of AP courses, he believes the most impactful course was AP Language and Composition, taught by Carver. He received credit from the course because he scored a 5 on the test. This score and others contributed to his application process immensely. 

Carver, looking back on having Joey in class last year, said, “Joey is honestly just an inherently smart kid. He was in my AP class last year and he probably could have had anyone be his teacher and he would have gotten a good score. He is just thoughtful and interested in learning in general.”

Cathedral’s Academic and Administrative Assistant Mrs. Megan Schmidt, and Joey’s mother, was a major role model and influence to him during his high school career. She helped Joey to “reveal his path”. 

Megan Schmidt said, “It’s interesting to watch your child find their true fit. When I watch him perform, there is a light that shines from him, that says ‘this is who he is’. I don’t think parents get that opportunity to see their child shine like that very often. Without question, there is nothing that makes him happier. He thrives in the spotlight. It is very clear that his calling is to sing and perform. I can’t imagine him doing anything else.”

Prior to Joey’s understanding of his path for the next level, he had been convinced he would study law. “I actually wanted to go into law. I figured ‘oh’ that is how I can help people and make the world a better place, but then I realized over time there was no way I could do that without having one person or one faction be disapproving of the work I was doing. Once again, I was back to square one. I had no idea what I was going to do.” 

Joey Schmidt, back row 3rd from the left, performs with Adrenaline Rush.

He advises those in high school to “consider taking as many AP’s as you are able to.” He said, “They are not for everybody, but if you want to get the most out of your college career, definitely take AP’s. Study for AP’s. It is definitely a grind, but in the end it’s worth it!”

Carver, along with other AP teachers, know the benefits these classes have on their students at the next level. She said, “Kids who take AP classes are very prepared for the rigors of college. AP courses tend to be graded in a manner that is more like a college would be, in that, in college, there are no homework points. There are just tests, quizzes and projects, and AP is closer to that than normal high school classes are.”

Joey will continue his academic and music career at the next level, without the stress of usual freshman courses. AP courses, have set him up for success in his future. Joey said, “Never, ever, ever, listen to people who tell you that what you are doing is stupid, because I have had so many people come up to me and tell me a career in music will get me nowhere. Haters are my motivators!”