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OHS grad heading to White House for internship

Patrick Brooks (click for larger version)
February 06, 2013 - After getting a nudge from his college advisor to check into being a summer intern at the White House, Patrick Brooks decided to apply.

Little did he know, he'd be accepted.

"I am just really shocked I got in. Honestly, I wasn't really expecting to be one of the people selected," said the 2010 graduate of Oxford High School. "I'm really excited for the opportunity to work there . . . make some contacts and just really be involved in things that are actually happening in (Washington) D.C."

Though he's not completely sure of his position yet, he does know he'll be working in the Health and Human Services sector, which is right up his alley.

Brooks, who is currently a junior at Lake Superior State University with a major in political science and minor in biology, is planning on going to graduate school to pursue his degree is in public health.

"After that, I am really hoping to work in the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) in the field of public health policy and maybe in epidemiology with infectious diseases," he said. "There are so many things that go into public health, (such as) public policy aspects and social and sociological aspects. There is just a lot you can do."

Brooks said a lot of government officials are good politicians, but don't really know the science involved with the public health aspect of government. He's hoping to combine the best of both worlds to achieve a positive results.

"I understand the political side and I'll understand the science side," he said. "I can kind of bridge that gap and make communication and policy implementation a little more effective."

Since middle school, Brooks said he's read about politics and been involved with what was happening in the political world. "It's always been an interest of mine," he said. "But I never really considered it to be something I could major in until I got to school and saw what it could do for me."

Originally, he was planning on studying to become a lawyer, but once he was introduced to the field of public health, it became of great interest to him.

"I really liked doing the comparative politics, looking at two different systems and comparing and contrasting their benefits and drawbacks," he said. "I am considering doing my senior thesis (next year) on how social and cultural conditions in different countries effect the way they approach public health and how their policies are different from ours."

Brooks will begin his internship at the White House in June.

"His mom and I are so proud of him," said his father, Greg Brooks. "Hopefully, it will serve him really well in his future. His mom and I are really proud."

Trevor graduated with degrees in English and communications from Rochester College. He wrote for his college and LA View newspapers before joining The Clarkston News in May 2007.
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