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Devin T. Adams, Second Year, Vanderbilt Law School Bass Military Scholars Program

devin Adams

Second-year law student Devin T. Adams is a member of the inaugural cohort of Bass Military Scholars, who joined the Vanderbilt community in 2019.


Devin T. Adams has the kind of mind that is always a few steps ahead. As an entrepreneur running a short-term rental business, Devin found himself navigating a regulatory battle between his industry and hotel lobbyists in New York City. He decided to pursue his law degree because he believed a fluency in real estate law could accelerate the idea phase of future projects that he ultimately hopes will change the trajectory for young people who feel their path to success is limited.

While he was aware of Vanderbilt’s reputation as a supportive, veteran-friendly campus, a friend attending Vanderbilt Law School encouraged Devin to look into the Bass Military Scholars Program, and the pieces fell into place.

“Being part of the inaugural cohort of Bass Scholars was amazing. The scholarship is a blessing, and the mentorship aspect is very important to me.”

“The Bass Military Scholars Program brings incredibly talented U.S. military veterans to Vanderbilt where they receive a world-class education and share their values of selfless service, integrity and mission focus with the student body, staff and faculty, and community. Devin personifies the vision of this program: to recognize and reward the distinguished service of veterans, expose the Vanderbilt community to their unique life experiences, and prepare these American patriots for leadership roles in their chosen profession and continued service to American society.” — Lt. Gen. Gary Cheek, U.S. Army (Retired); Director, Bass Military Scholars Program

Devin honed his skill and passion for mentoring at the United States Military Academy at West Point. As a student, he says, “West Point changed my life.” In his role as a recruiter and faculty member, he was committed to helping a new generation of young leaders accomplish their goals by learning “to make decisions with your 30-year-old self in mind.”

With the foundation he’s building in development and land use regulations, Devin plans to achieve his ultimate project—establishing a co-operative school focused on character building, health, financial literacy and a rigorous education.

“I’ve encountered a mindset in lower income communities that ‘you are who you are.’ I fundamentally reject that and believe, ‘you are what you do.’ There are so many professional paths to success. I want to teach kids that doing things and succeeding is a habit you can form, and something you can wake up every day and pursue.”