Blessed Trinity’s Devon Krapcho finds strength to excel in the face of adversity
By NICHOLE GOLDEN, Staff reporter | Published May 15, 2014
In nominating senior Devon Krapcho for The Georgia Bulletin’s outstanding senior recognition, school principal Frank Moore noted that “In a time when young people are so self-involved, Devon never takes himself too seriously and is one of the most modest students I know.”
ROSWELL—Devon Krapcho’s high school career has been marked by success in the classroom, achievement on the soccer field, an impressive business endeavor, service to others, and personal challenges.
A senior at Blessed Trinity High School in Roswell, Krapcho said it was his junior year that was the toughest—dealing with both a rigorous academic schedule and the worsening of an autoimmune disorder.
“There’s not a lot of research,” said Krapcho about the condition of alopecia, which causes hair loss.
“Usually you’re diagnosed in your teen years,” he explained. “I had a small bald spot when I was a freshman.”
By the summer of his sophomore year, as he was set to begin eleventh grade, the condition worsened.
“I just shaved all the rest of my hair off,” he said, making the decision just to live with it.
“It helped me learn about myself,” he said about the hair loss and realizing he could no longer keep it from others and maybe that was a good thing. “I definitely think there were character flaws I had,” he said.
He began to think of hair loss in terms of how much more difficult it would have been for someone like his younger sister Natalie to face. He can now talk openly about alopecia with others and about his other condition, vitiligo, which causes skin depigmentation.
Krapcho’s friends also helped by approaching him to see if they could nominate him for the senior superlative, “Best Hair.”
“I thought that was pretty funny. I really liked that,” he said. “At the same time, it was serious for me. It makes me look at other people differently.”
The son of Cindy and Doug Krapcho of Alpharetta, he received several college acceptances, including a full scholarship to Georgia Tech. He has decided to attend the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind.
The business school there appeals to him, perhaps in conjunction with computer programming. “I might also want to be involved in investments,” he said.
Krapcho has already dabbled in the business world. He joined two businessmen with tech experience to develop Word Dash, a word game application. The youngest of the trio, he is the CEO.
Some of his most memorable experiences have been playing soccer at Blessed Trinity and being a student ambassador. He enjoyed learning facts about the school so he could give parent and student tours.
“It was fun being an orientation leader,” he said.
A midfielder on the BT soccer team, Krapcho also played for Concorde Fire North, a soccer club team.
This year’s BT team was heavy on younger students and Don Gillig, head soccer coach, relied on Krapcho as team captain to help integrate the ninth-graders into the program and to adapt and help by playing other positions.
“He understood the situation we were in,” said Gillig. “Devon took it in stride.”
Gillig said that Krapcho is demanding of himself, caring of others and mature for his age.
Krapcho has excelled academically and his favorite courses were economics, English, chemistry and apologetics.
“It’s important to have some sense of religion and philosophy in your life,” he said.
Margaret Ward, advanced placement chemistry instructor, called him an amazing young gentleman.
“Devon is truly one who stands out in a crowd with his positive exuberance in his academic endeavors,” she said. “As a helpful leader, he encouraged others to have and maintain a ‘never give up’ attitude toward learning science.”
Krapcho said both Ward and Darrell Moses were his favorite teachers and have unique ways of affecting students.
“I could really talk to them about a lot of things,” he said.
Blessed Trinity’s Works of Mercy service hours led Krapcho to volunteer with the Home Stretch program, which helps homeless mothers find permanent housing solutions.
“There are so many ways to get those hours,” he said about the service time.
According to him, incoming freshmen should get to know their teachers.
“The teachers here are very open,” he said.
He acknowledges that transitioning to a large school such as Blessed Trinity can be an overwhelming adjustment. “It took me until my sophomore year,” he said.
He feels ready for Notre Dame and said block scheduling is beneficial in knowing how university courses will be.
“Blessed Trinity prepared us well for that,” he said.