Globe-trotting photographer honored

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Dan Plutchak | April 16, 2014

BELOIT -- If there's one thing Steve Raymer learned from his years traveling the globe photographing for National Geographic magazine, it's that the world has become a much smaller place.

That's the message Raymer shared with students April 11, 2014 when he was inducted into Beloit Memorial High School's Hall of Fame.

The ceremony is less about the honoree than it is about the impression he makes on current students, says Director of Alumni Services Fran Fruzen.

"It's as much about the kids as it is about the hall of fame inductee," Fruzen said. "We want that message to come across for the kids."

Raymer, who graduated from Beloit Memorial High School in 1963, went on to become a staff photographer for National Geographic.

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Raymer currently is a tenured professor of journalism, as well as an adjunct faculty member of the university's India Studies program, at Indiana University and lives in Bloomington. He returned to his hometown for the ceremony.

See more of Raymer's photographs HERE

Raymer exemplifies the type of person who has been added to the hall of fame.

"We look for people who have gone out and been a credit to the school," Fruzen said.

It's also important for the honoree to be able to come back to the school to connect with current students.

In an interview from his home last week before he left for Beloit, Raymer said his message to students is that the world is a much smaller place than when he graduated.

"In this globalized society, they will be competing with the smartest kids from all over the world," Raymer said.

"A C-plus in Beloit, Wis., is not going to cut it compared to an A student from China."

And how do they compete? They need to make excellence their standard, just like students in other countries.

Another key to success is persistence, which Raymer described as going back as many times as necessary to get things right.

As an example, he used a photograph he took for National Geographic of the square in St. Petersburg, featuring the monument to Russia's triumph over Napoleon in 1812. 

Read the complete story HERE.


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