Student Feature in the OC Register - Joseph Lee

By Shannon Huang, Development & Communications Manager

At Ryman Arts, our students are artistically gifted, ambitious, and motivated. Through the program, we see them grow as artists, as people, and many times are fortunate enough to learn of their stories. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to meet and learn about Joseph Lee, Ryman Arts 2016 alumnus.

"Joseph Lee hasn’t had many opportunities of late to be himself.

A son and a brother, he’s also been a caregiver and a guardian. A student and a source of positivity.

The glue holding his family together.

With a brush or a pencil in his hand, Lee has been able to enjoy being a teenager. “Art gives me a way to speak,” he said. “

As all these different things came around, I felt I had a social obligation to tell my story somehow.”

Lee’s older brother, David, is autistic. Their father, Ken Soo, has Parkinson’s disease.

For 10-plus years, Lee has helped his mother, Ieesun, tend to both. Rare is the day he’s not doing something for someone else.

“I tell Joseph that this family is the fruit of his behavior, and now we’re harvesting,” Ieesun Lee said. “It’s a fruitful season."

Read his full story at The OC Register.