Rachel Devor earned her bachelor's degree in public relations and marketing from American University and immediately went on to complete a master’s in sports management from Georgetown University. She is currently in New York City where she works in the Social Media Department at a creative advertising agency in Brooklyn called Madwell. Rachel credits DV with helping her to understand and be proud of both her strengths and weaknesses.
When did you come to DVFS, and from where?
I came to DVFS from a private school in Center City as I was about to enter the 7th grade (I believe that was 2005).
Can you tell us a little bit about your learning difference and struggles in school?
I have a form of dyslexia that made it difficult for me to comprehend a lot of the more complex things when reading. I also suffer from ADHD but this wasn’t diagnosed until I was a junior in high school.
What changed for you when you came to DVFS?
When I came to DVFS I no longer had to worry about getting extra help after school because the teaching was catered to the way I learned and not the other way around. My strengths were highlighted and my weaknesses began to improve as my teachers recognized the characteristics that made me excel.
Do you have any special memories from your time at DVFS?
I really enjoyed my time at DVFS, I made friends with people that I still talk to regularly. One of my good friends from high school that I met at DVFS just moved to NYC (as did I) and we recently reunited after five years which was pretty awesome. Overall I love that DVFS is a community that cares a lot about the people that encompass it. I frequently come back to visit and although not all of my teachers are there anymore, it’s nice to hang out in John and Jalal’s office and feel like nothing has changed.
What are you doing now?
I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in public relations and marketing from American University and immediately went on to get my Master’s in Sports Management from Georgetown University. I'm coming up on two years in NYC this August and currently work at a creative advertising agency in Brooklyn called Madwell, where I work in the Social Media Department. Coming to work at Madwell everyday is a treat. Our office is full of creative spirits that are some of the most talented and hardworking people I've ever met - and we have an office cat which is just awesome.
What do you think the long-term value of a DVFS education has been for you?
It goes without saying that I wouldn’t be where I am today without DVFS. I’ve learned the skills necessary to not only complete the task at hand but to succeed in it. Before DVFS I felt like I always needed extra help, but when I got to school in 7th grade I started to learn how much potential I had and how learning differently wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. I’m forever grateful for the teachers who are dedicated to their student’s success and am beyond thankful for their patience (especially in the math department). Having a DVFS education opens the doors to endless possibilities because students realize their full potential.
How does your experience at DVFS connect to your life today?
I think my experiences at DVFS connect to my life today in many ways. First and foremost, I wouldn’t be where I am today without the skills I learned at DVFS. My hard work ethic was encouraged at DVFS and I was often told that even though it might take me a different route to get to the goal or an extra thirty minutes, not to give up. I take that lesson and apply it to everything I do. I also think that DVFS taught me to use my strengths and not to undermine my weaknesses. I'm still honest about being dyslexic – it’s what makes me who I am and I wouldn’t trade it. DVFS taught me to be proud of both my strengths and weaknesses and I'll be forever grateful for that.