Stories from intrepid reporters attending the Illinois Press Foundation Journalism Workshop at Eastern Illinois University
By Kaylen Gehrke
Alex Devlin effortlessly manages to participate in “everything”; however, behind her put-together smile is an inexorable persistence. That persistence manifests itself in every aspect of her life.
This 17-year-old, Mother McAuley High School student tackles various athletic and academic commitments that keep her overwhelmingly busy. But yet, she makes it look easy. For example, this is reflected in the first time she ran.
“The first couple of blocks were effortless” and she even left her mom behind to pass her and go faster.
Devlin realized her natural talent and affinity for running on this day and has participated in track and cross-country teams throughout her high school career. Devlin’s success is revealed by looking beneath the surface at the relentless effort she puts into all of her endeavours.
Devlin participates in National Honor Society, Student Council, Science Club, English Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society, Art Honor Society, and Student Ambassadors. Just to name a few. She explains how she loves being involved in so many activities because it keeps her constantly busy. This also opens her up to meet all kinds of new people. This is demonstrated in Devlin’s devotion to her friends and in helping others.
Devlin enjoys planning out college course maps for her friends in order to help them decide on future plans. Her aspirations, although she’s still undecided, lie in being a college counselor. However, success along with having a comfortable life and salary remain important in the back of her mind.
Devlin described herself in the words of her coach as an “all or nothing person.” She either devotes all her strength and effort into the obstacle in front of her, or accepts today may not be her best day. Whatever that challenge may be, Devlin embodies this work ethic into all of her ventures.
According to Devlin’s friend of three years, Anna Barry, “She [Devlin] sets goals for herself and works really hard until she achieves them.” This is exhibited in Devlin’s resilience and love for the musical Hamilton, which she couldn’t stop talking about.
“I had my dad pay for a scalper to guarantee tickets.” Luckily, this paid off. Devlin will be attending her favorite musical and “way of life” this November in Chicago.
With Devlin’s many impressive accolades and obligations however, she “never lets stress stop her from doing anything,” according to Barry. Devlin’s composure and hard-working mindset isn’t solely funneled into school activities. Her determination also drives her pursuit for excellence to be able to attend a good college which remains very important in her mind.
Devlin when asked what she is passionate about explained how she loves helping other people. By always helping those close to her, Devlin strives to embody others with this same goal. Her goal remains to promote others spirit around her. Which then inspires other people to do the same. Ultimately Devlin put it best in her own words, that by enacting “change in their [other people’s] life, changes other people.”