March 12, 2010
Aaron Brooks starring at Cowley
Having recently starred in a lead role in the spring musical “South
Pacific”, Cowley College sophomore Aaron Brooks followed that up
by being named the school’s March Student of the Month.
Brooks, son of Lance and Carla Brooks, is a pre-medicine major from Udall. He has a brother, Jon 24, and a sister, Cori 23. Grandparents are Jon and Carlene Deming of Pratt, and Don (deceased) and Kay Brooks of Haysville.
Brooks, who was home schooled, began taking classes at Cowley in 2006. With a Cowley campus close to home and having heard good things about the school from his sister, Cori, who graduated from Cowley in 2007, Brooks decided to begin taking classes at the school full-time in the fall of 2008.
“I am glad I came here, it has helped me not only academically, but I have also learned life skills,” Brooks said.
Along with playing Emile De Becque in “South Pacific”, Brooks is involved in the Math and Science Club, Phi Theta Kappa, Cowley Improv Comedy Troupe, and Act One. He is a also a member of the Academic Excellence Challenge team and the Concert Choir.
While taking voice lessons, Brooks decided to try out for the Cowley Concert choir. Once accepted for the choir, he then auditioned for “South Pacific”.
“I thought I would be one of the singers in the back, so when they told me I had the lead role I was shocked,” Brooks said. “It was life changing, I learned so much. Scott (MacLaughlin), Gloria (Tham), and Connie (Donatelli are so knowledgeable in their areas and taught me a lot. It was a great experience and one I can never replace.”
His mother, Carla, was a RN (registered nurse) at St. Joseph Hospital in Wichita when Brooks was growing up. Being exposed to his mother, who was thought of as the neighborhood doctor while growing up in the country in Udall, he decided he would like to one-day work in the medical field.
He completed the EMT-B (Emergency Medical Technician-Basic) course at Cowley and became nationally certified last spring and hopes to one day become a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine or Naturopathic Medicine. His dream is to provide medical care to the poor and needy across the World, specifically to those who suffer from mental and emotional disabilities, and share with them the healing powers of Jesus Christ.
“I would like to share the gospel with people through the context of healing them,” Brooks said.
Brooks has a 4.0 grade point average and is well respected among his instructors.
“He has set the curve on every microbiology test,” natural science department instructor Scott Layton said. “Aaron is one of the finest students I have had the pleasure of working with.”
Theatre director Scott MacLaughlin enjoyed the experience to work with Brooks during the musical.
“He is an excellent student and is always prepared,” MacLaughlin said. “He helps others and has a great attitude for learning.”
In his free time he enjoys being outdoors, whether it be playing sports, hunting, fishing, or camping. When he needs to relax he likes playing guitar or Djembe for his own enjoyment or for worship in Church. He will earn his associates degree from Cowley in May, yet is still debating on whether to spend another year at the school. If not, he has been offered a pair of scholarships to attend Emporia State University, which is where his mother, Carla, attended college.
“I still want to pursue pre-med but would also like to act at my next school,” Brooks said.
He credits his relationship with God, the support he received from his mother, the wisdom he has received from his grandfather, Jon, and the work ethic he learned from his father, with helping him get to where he is today.
His home school experience was also beneficial to his success.
“I would not trade it for anything, it taught me how to study before I came to college,” Brooks said.
Brooks was caught off guard when informed he was the March Student of the Month.
“I didn’t know what to say, it was completely unexpected,” Brooks said. “It is quite an honor. I didn’t even know my name would be up for it.”
He credits natural science department instructors Scott Layton, Greg Nichols, and Pam Smith for helping provide him with a solid education.
“The knowledge and caring they have for their students is quite applaudable,” Brooks said. “The natural science and math department at Cowley is unparalleled, even compared to the four-year schools I have visited. The teachers here are interested in you achieving success.”