Meet Devon Esrick
“Do something today your future self will thank you for” -anonymous
This quote is written on my mirror so I remind myself every morning to constantly strive to become a better version of myself. I have always been passionate about stepping outside of my comfort zone, embracing change, and trying to find a way to make my mark on the world.
I did not have a conventional upbringing; I was encouraged to be bold, be passionate, and be brave. This encouragement helped me achieve two of my proudest accomplishments: starting my non-profit Hope Through Education and graduating high school a year and a half early by homeschooling.
Hope Through Education started when I was 13, as a vision. I wanted to raise money to build a one-room schoolhouse in Africa after seeing children sit in a field so they could get an education. Hope Through Education raised enough money to build four schools, in three different African countries, and with over 1,000 students in attendance. Receiving updates from our schools and hearing about the success stories of our hundreds of students is my favorite part of founding Hope Through Education. I cannot even begin to describe the feeling I experienced when we broke ground on our first school in Zambia. This school is just a few miles away from the village I that initally sparked the idea that brought Hope Through Education to life.
While homeschooling, I was also a competitive equestrian. I spent 40 weeks a year traveling on the equestrian circut around the country. Working with animals from dawn until dusk while taking classes online quickly taught me the importance of time management. It also taught me how to step outside my comfort zone and how to embrace each and every situation thrown my way. My equestrian career suddenly came to an end when I found out my back was broken in two places a week before the Junior Olympics. Despite the unforunate circumstances, I learned to accept that when one door closes, another door opens.
I applied and was accepted to the University of Miami, class of 2014. I would defer for a year so I could rehabilitate my back and also go on the first of many trips of a lifetime. I took a four month trip to China, Australia, New Zealand, and Fiji. This backpacking adventure opened my eyes to other incredible parts of the world where I made friendships that will last a lifetime, volunteered, stepped outside my comfort zone, and discovered a new passion, my love of traveling.
I graduated from the University of Miami in 2014 with a double Major in Accounting in Finance. During my time at Miami, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to study abroad twice, I went to Shanghai, China and Milan, Italy. I decided to continute my accounting education and graduated from the "U" with my Masters of Science in Taxation in May of 2015. I also studied abroad during my Masters degree and went back to China for Spring break to volunteer and take business classes in Shanghai, Xi'an, and Bejing.