Try a Lot of Different Things: Video Transcript

Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (BA Political Science and Sociology, Miami, 1982) [U.S. Representative (R) for Indiana's 5th Congressional District]: The advice I would offer students is to try a lot of different things. I am a huge believer in internships. Obviously an internship that I had changed my life. Those internships provide you just great ways to take what's happening beyond, beyond Miami, and then bring it back to your classes and try and figure out how to apply what you've learned to the classes that you're taking.

I have had a number of students from Miami as interns while I am in Washington DC, and they have been fabulous interns for me. And I've also had Miami students as interns in my district office in Indiana. And so I always look for students who are interested in the political process or in government, and try to give them that opportunity to learn. It's not for everybody, they may do that internship and learn it's really not what they want to do, but if I can excite them to be involved in some way in government or in some way in public policy, I love giving them that opportunity.

Realize that what Miami has prepared for you is to effect change in your community. Whether it's going home to a smaller community, and I have been encouraging more and more students to think about that, because many of our small towns are struggling a little bit more. Sometimes students can actually have a huge impact in a smaller community than they can even have in our larger cities. But it's important and it takes work. It takes work to make those connections happen. I think with social media, it's a bit easier to do these days than it was when I was starting out. But also just remember to lend that hand up to the person coming behind you, particularly the Miami student, and always make sure you are there to give them that hand up as well.

[October 2015]