A Gift Fit for a Prince

Charlie Prince

It is no coincidence that STA’s beloved physics teacher (who just retired after 31 years of teaching) bears the last name of “Prince”.

As defined-

Prince: the son of a monarch; a man regarded as outstanding or excellent in a particular sphere or group.

And there you have it. Charlie Prince lives up to the very definition of his surname as an authentic, genuine “prince”.

“Son of a Monarch”  Deeply devout in his Catholic faith, Mr. Prince humbly embraces his lineage as a child of God. The Gospel of Jesus guides his every step in life and he softly permeates God’s grace in all that he does and all that he says. He is a living apostle in the truest sense of the word.

For years, Mr. Prince has seized spontaneous moments with his colleagues and his students to share his faith, to invite them to spend time with Jesus- sometimes in hallway encounters, sometimes via email, sometimes at community gatherings. This year, Mr. Prince initiated the Rosary Club at St. Thomas Aquinas High School. Every Wednesday afternoon, students, faculty, administrators and staff gather in the Chapel and, together, pray the rosary and ask Mary to bind St. Thomas Aquinas High School to her Immaculate Heart.

“A man regarded as outstanding or excellent in a particular sphere or group”  As a long-time master of physics, Mr. Prince has taught hundreds of Saints in the “knowledge of nature.” Explaining the laws of motion and its behaviors through space and time while combining concepts of matter, energy and force is second nature to Mr. Prince. Physics intersects with many interdisciplinary areas and certainly its boundaries are not rigidly defined. Impressed by the power of his academic discipline, Mr. Prince has wowed many a student with his passion and capability as a conveyor of this subject’s vast implications.

Next fall, Mr. Charlie Prince will transition from 31 years as a full-time science teacher to serving as a student mentor. Over the course of his career, Mr. Prince has ignited many sparks both in the classroom and in the imaginative minds of his students. Much as a gift excites a child, so does scientific equipment excite Mr. Prince. Thus, we feel that the best way to honor his tireless dedication to STA is to acquire, update and replace antiquated equipment. Donor support will provide valuable physics equipment (a Ripple Tank, Wimshurst Machine, Van de Graaf Generator, etc.) and help Mr. Prince and our STEAM Team continue doing what they love doing most: educating Saints.

Last week, Mr. Prince was given a thunderous round of applause as he officially stepped down as Physics teacher. His shared thoughts reveal the inner Charlie Prince that we all know and love.

I am not able to give an adequate thank you for the magnitude of your acclaim this morning. It is overwhelming. I am glad for what each of you mean to me from the heart, and I am privileged to be one of you. Even though I am returning next year as a “consultant/mentor,” the sense that something is coming to an end is very real and was brought home by your applause, as is how such moments are able by grace to speak. The first time I walked into the school 31 years ago, I looked up at the cross and the name of St. Thomas Aquinas. I said to myself, “What a name to work under!” At the time, it was all ahead of me. Now it is all, or almost all, behind me, and I ask myself, or maybe it is my guardian angel who asks, “Why did you do this, why did you stay so long?” To which I reply with tears but without hesitation, “I did it for him, for St. Thomas.” You have helped me, today, to realize that I did in fact do it for him, which is really the same as doing it for God. And I hope to do a little more, by His grace, in a little different way for a little longer.

In his 31 year wake, Charlie Prince leaves a wave of deep affection and a legacy unlike any other- one borne of acute intellect supported by an unwavering Christian discipleship. God Bless You, Mr. Prince.

To make a donation in support of our Science Technology Engineering Art Math Program, please visit our Online Giving page. You may then choose STEAM Team from the drop-down menu.