Alumnus serves as rector at Notre Dame

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Alumnus serves as rector at Notre Dame

Alexius Rocha & Omar Perez, Contributing Reporters

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Being the first class to graduate from a high school can make the experience shaky and ever-changing. But those challenges did not stop successful alumni Justin McDevitt from pursuing a successful career.

McDevitt is currently a rector at Notre Dame.

“As the rector of stanford hall, which is like the head of the house (from the Harry Potter series),” McDevitt said. “I teach a few college classes during the day, then come home to Stanford to be with my guys.”

McDevitt was not always at the best place in his career. He went through many difficulties trying to get to where he is today. He had “many blessings” but also struggles in life.

One struggle he had was skipping kindergarten. McDevitt would always be the youngest kid in class in elementary and intermediate school.

“Some kids were mean about it, telling me to go back to whatever grade I should be in,” McDevitt said. “But the comments only made me want to work harder.”

Once he got to high school, the newly created CCHS back in 1997, every club, organization and sport had to be created from scratch.

With help from his friends and teachers, making clubs was simple and easier to build together rather than alone. McDevitt said Caney Creek had a “profound impact” on his career.

“Looking back, it made me feel comfortable taking risks and investing in the long run,” McDevitt said. “Today in my career, I think outside the box much more than normal, because I know that, just because something doesn’t yet exist, doesn’t mean it can’t. Life is full of possibilities.”

After law school in Chicago, he decided to get his Ph.D. at Notre Dame, so he could teach “almost anywhere he wanted.” After four years in college, one-year of extra college classes, three years of law school and four years of graduate school, on top of everything at Caney Creek and before, he decided to call his academic career as a student quits.

“I decided 24-years of school was enough,” McDevitt said. “I left with only my masters instead of going on to finish my Ph.D.”

McDevitt was not sure what he wanted to do when he left, but he fell in love with Notre Dame. His professor suggested to look jobs in student affairs at Notre Dame.

“He said he thought I’d make a great rector,” McDevitt said. “I had no idea what that even was. When he explained that it was basically like being the dorm dad, I thought that sounded perfect for me. I applied and was accepted and I’ve loved every minute since last year, I was asked to teach a class and this year it’s four classes; so, I couldn’t be happier.”

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