Helping those who cannot help themselves
Andrew DeVore is one of our distinguished alumni making a career of helping others who are unable to help themselves.
Andrew graduated from the University of Arizona in 2013 where he double-majored in Psychology and Humanities. “Going into college, I knew I wanted to help others and I thank Ms. Burke and Mr. Wentsch (as well as a few high school teachers) for helping me discover my passion for helping those who have trouble helping themselves.”
Andrew joined the SCS family in preschool and persevered through 8th grade. “For me, two of the most powerful teaching moments I remember from my SCS days were the concept of time management and the opportunity I received as an 8th grader to return to the younger classes and assist the teachers.” The time Andrew spent helping students in the LE classroom changed the direction of his life forever and shaped his life’s work.
Prioritizing work and managing time are crucial skills that were instilled in Andrew during his years at SCS. “We were given a assignments at the beginning of each week and were expected to accomplish all the work when we wanted within a given time frame. This skill is so crucial in adult life because life itself isn’t structured. You need to prioritize your time effectively and get your work done, because at the end of the day, the responsibility lands on you. I am grateful to SCS for helping instill this responsibility in me at a young age.
“Because of this, I learned how to focus my time and energy on the most important assignments first. In college and beyond, teachers don’t give you specific time windows to accomplish tasks. Either you show initiative and get the work done, or you fall behind.”
In 5th grade, Andrew didn’t do math work because no one MADE him. At the end of the year, he had to do all 50 assignments in one week or face not being promoted to 6th grade. “This is a perfect example of how it is up to you to manage your time and do your own work in order to move ahead.”
Bob Wentsch and Joette Burke are Andrew’s most memorable teachers. “In the early years, Bob showed me (1) time management is key, and (2) never give up. I also have very fond memories of playing a variation of dodge ball called “Fogel ball” … I wonder if Bob still plays that with the kids today? I remember that Jo Burke seemed really strict and no-nonsense on the outside. It took me a while to realize that she just wanted to see each student succeed.” Jo played a key role in shaping Andrew’s desire to help others by allowing him to mentor younger students in Bob’s classroom.
Andrew currently lives in Erie, Pennsylvania and works full time at an autism advocacy and support firm called KaleidAScope. He works one-on-one with clients who are on the autism spectrum and assists them with daily goals and objectives.
“KaleidAScope, stands for “Knowledge – Advocacy – Support” and so it is my job to help each individual become as independent as possible while still providing the support they need.” Andrew plans on returning to graduate school in a few years to pursue a degree in special education so that he can continue to help those who have trouble helping themselves.