Meet Your Campus Hosts: April Bevans
April Bevans runs a tight ship at the Academy of Art University’s Howard Brodie Hall residence hall at 655 Sutter St. Everyone walking in must present their ID and abide by the building’s rules and regulations, no exceptions. Even when Bevans isn’t there, the students and residents proceed as if she were.
Academy of Art University Campus Host April Bevans. Photo by Bob Toy.
“I try to be that figure for the Academy,” she said. “I’m serious about what I do. I’m very persistent with what I’m doing and the kids feed off my energy.”
Being strict is a necessity as a campus host, but Bevans also insists that being nurturing is a huge part of the job as well. The San Francisco native has been helping and caring for children and young people her whole life, starting with working in her late mother’s day care center and then taking child development classes at the City College of San Francisco. So, it’s no wonder when she mentions “the kids [in my building] call me Mom,” with a laugh.
“My role is to try to keep [the students] in a good foundation, watch the environment, try to keep them safe,” Bevans said of her responsibilities. “I try to make it home away from home. I want them to be comfortable. I want them to know, ‘Hey, you can trust me.’”
Bevans has been part of the Academy since 2010, after her friend (an Academy shuttle driver) referred her for the position. She started at the International House at 860 Sutter St. then was transferred to the School of Architecture building at 601 Brannan St. before being moved once more to the residence halls.
Outside of the Academy, Bevans also works part-time as a crossing guard (“My life is pretty much based around safety,” she said). For as long as she could remember, Bevans has always held down two jobs, including stints working for United Airlines and in a local group home.
Bevans said people often marvel and ask her about her near-decade time with the Academy. She acknowledged how her presence influences the students and constantly goes the extra mile as a sounding board for anyone that crosses her path.
“I love to be that voice when they need someone to talk to,” she said. “They know they can always come to me. Some even find me after they graduate and they still come talk to me, they know I’m going to listen no matter what I’m doing.”
Bevans also extends that same support to her fellow campus hosts and campus safety team. She said Mike Petricca, director of campus safety, wrote her a heartfelt email saying Bevans is a shining example of what a good host is to not just residents and students, but to the entire Academy community.
“Some of my best friends are hosts,” said Bevans. “And without this job, I wouldn’t’ve met them. I wouldn’t’ve met Mike. I love being a team player because that makes the job even smoother.”