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Dr. Arthur Brooks is President of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), a non-partisan public policy think tank in Washington, D.C., where he works with top scholars, policymakers, and elected officials to fight for for all Americans’ access to free enterprise and earned success. Dr. Brooks’ path to the nation’s capital was anything but typical. At 19, he left college to play the French horn, professionally. He toured internationally and recorded several albums, eventually landing in the City Orchestra of Barcelona.  In his late 20s, Dr. Brooks returned to the US and completed his bachelor’s degree by correspondence at Thomas Edison State College majoring in Economics. He went on to earn a Ph.D. in public policy, focusing on microeconomics and mathematical modeling. After completing his doctorate, he spent 10 years as a professor of public administration. Described by NBC News as “the Republican Party’s poverty guru,” Dr. Brooks has helped make poor and vulnerable Americans a key focus for AEI and for the conservative movement. AEI scholars have emerged as an unrivaled source for creative thinking on poverty, opportunity, and free enterprise. Press play if you want to learn how to break into this meaningful field of work!


  • What is public policy and why it can be a life of service
  • What are the skills that Dr. Brooks looks for in the people he hires at AEI
  • Whether your major matters to break into this field
  • Why learning the statistics and data analysis are essential
  • What the best career advice was that Dr Brooks received
  • Why the shepherd needs to smell like the sheep (and what that even means)!
  • Why Dr Brooks thinks his job is like the movie Up in the Air
  • Listen to Dr Brooks’ full T4C episode #3:  How to Build an Awesome & Happy Work Life 

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