MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A Minnesota college student isn’t letting his loss of vision stop him from pursuing his love for acting.

Mankato State University sophomore Matthew Stairs has one of the lead roles in the school’s recent production of Boom.

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In sixth grade, Stairs was diagnosed with a rare disease that left him legally blind.

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It takes him twice as long to read scripts, and he has to rely on sounds as he interacts with his fellow actors. Despite the challenges, he says he never gave up on his passion for acting.

“It’s a challenge and yet there’s something about it that keeps bringing me back,” he said. “And even though it can be very difficult and frustrating at times, it’s beyond worth it. It’s fun in so many different ways.”

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Stairs’s dedication has earned him numerous national acting award nominations.