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Vincent Bevins: A Renaissance Writer

Joseph Beaird, Communications Editor

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Servite High School, an accelerated learning environment, provides many opportunities for the future of its students. One alumnus has branched out into the field of Journalism and travels internationally; his name is Vincent Bevins ‘02.

As a Servite student, Bevins was a textbook scholar. He wasn’t concerned about getting straight-A’s; rather, he focused on growing intellectually and doing what made him happy. “I graduated in 2002 and for us, one thing that was really great was that some of the teachers were just obviously brilliant and made you LEARN stuff, even if it wasn’t exactly directly applicable to a college application.” He was a strong water polo player and by focusing on his SAT, he was able to attend his dream school.

 

Ron Bevins ‘76 explains the mentality of his son and how chose his career. “Vincent never mentioned any career prior to college. Learning interested him, and so he attended Cal Berkeley. He is not materialistic, and felt he wanted to do something that would be meaningful.” There is hardly anything more meaningful than writing to make a change in this world.

 

Ever since he was in high school, Vince has been restless and independent. His very nature is what makes the career of journalism perfect for him. His father Ron describes his motivation. “That was probably serendipity. While at the London School of Economics, he did an internship for The Financial Times and they really liked his work, which led to one journalism or writing assignment after another. My sense is that Vincent is driven by his passion to do something that matters.” Whether he realizes it or not Bevins’ career as a writer has had a strong impact on the regions he has researched.

 

Vince started his journalism career in Caracas, Venezuela and has been working hard since 2007. His humble start into the realm of journalism is further fuel for inspiration. “It was a total accident. Looking around for jobs in Caracas, someone asked me to do some writing, and I just loved it. It’s continued to be a great way to learn things and do writing that reaches people somehow.”

 

Journalism is also incredibly important in today’s society. We are constantly consuming media and getting updates of current events, emergencies, and stories within a matter of minutes. Yet there can also be an impact in real life. Bevins wrote a story about modern slavery in the Amazon. He has been told that the story may have inspired legal action to end such actions.

 

It has also completely changed the way we operate as a society. While it may seem like all news is journalism, consumption of news has evolved. Bevins commented that “without media, we wouldn’t even know the basics about what is going on. Now, in 2017, not all media is journalism. There is social media, there are TV and print outlets, all of which can communicate something, even something important, but aren’t journalism.” These changes should persuade consumers of media to not trust everything they see at first glance. If something concerns you, go deeper and do some research.

 

The career has its ups and downs, yet Bevins never fails to see the good in each situation. When speaking about the difficulties of his job, he described the positive outcomes they bring as well. “It takes me far outside of a routine or the normal spaces people live. I haven’t lived in the US for ten years, which is exhilarating, but it can also be isolating and you have to be disciplined to work hard when so far from your employers, family and friends.” Sometimes, Christmas needs to be sacrificed for the greater good of journalism.

 

The separation anxiety can be scary at times. Bevins explains his coping mechanisms for such stressful situations. “Sometimes you’ll wake up in a hotel room in the Southern Philippines and just be bored or lonely or lazy and think ‘hmmm, it would be nice to have my family around,’ or ‘hrmm, maybe an office job wouldn’t be so bad.’ But it’s fine because then you just watch Netflix all day instead of working and no one even knows.”

 

With his restlessness and wanderlust, Vincent finds his most enjoyable stories to be long-form reporting and deep analysis. “I enjoyed going across Brazil by bus slowly and reporting on education, or really getting to know the political situation as governments fell apart slowly, stuff like that. I loved spending time with armed scientists fighting rainforest destruction.” Such fun experiences have required him to be fluent in multiple languages and master more skills than just writing. As a high school student, Bevins would have never been able to picture himself as a journalist.

 

Many students get bogged down in the stress of getting good grades and getting into their dream school. Because grades become their only concern, they hardly retain any of what is taught in class. Bevins challenges this mentality and should be a model for a Servite scholar.

 

Bevins encourages students to focus on the big picture. “The stress will pass.Once in college, you have a lot more flexibility to take your time. By the time you’re my age, I could spend 2-3 whole years screwing up and then if I bounce back, no one will even remember the failure. So, hold on.”

 

Vincent Bevins is a true inspiration to not only Servite students but any person who seeks a fruitful career. The story of how he came to become a writer should motivate others to never ignore any opportunities that present themselves. His writing has an effect on the places he goes and has caused great change in the world.

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