Manchester University
Oak Leaves

September 23, 2016

Dr. Erinn Brooks

Sociology professor Dr. Erinn Brooks

Sociology Professor Immerses Herself in MU Culture

Zoe Vorndran

A Wisconsin native and Green Bay Packers fan, Dr. Erinn Brooks is a new faculty member in the sociology department.

No stranger to small town atmospheres, Brooks was born and raised in Beloit, a small but diverse Wisconsin city. “I guess it pushed me into sociology because I met a lot of people and different cultures,” Brooks said. 

It may have been the small-town mixing pot that led her to become passionate and study inequality within society. In high school, Brooks dabbled in psychology and other social sciences that intrigued her. During her early education, her interests were in sports such as softball and basketball. It was not until college that Brooks was introduced to her future career path.

As a first-generation college student, Brooks’ plan was not always to pursue a degree in sociology or to teach, but when the opportunities presented themselves, she gladly accepted the challenge. She completed her undergraduate degree at Beloit College, where she double majored in sociology and education. Following her education at Beloit, she became a Teach for America Corps member where she taught in Los Angeles, Calif. From Los Angeles, she moved across the nation to North Carolina to pursue her MA and PhD in sociology. Through connections with Parker Marden, a former dean at Beloit College and 1994–2005 president at the then Manchester College, Brooks found her place at Manchester University. 

Brooks is looking forward to working at Manchester University not only to immerse herself in the culture, but also to watch her students grow. “I really enjoy seeing students progress and improve,” she said. “I like when it clicks for students and when they are engaged. Even students who are more resistant; I love when they have those days when they just want to be involved.” She delights in the feeling of accomplishment, and finds it rewarding to watch individual achievements. Brooks hopes to bring her love for sociology to life in the classroom and encourages everyone to give it a shot.

Currently, Brooks can be found on the second floor of the Academic Center where her office is located in the department of sociology. She maintains a considerable schedule this fall, teaching three courses: Introduction to Sociology, Sociological Theory and Practicum in Sociology. When not teaching, Brooks plans to attend football games, VIA presentations, and other school events to become absorbed in Spartan school spirit. During her free time, she also enjoys planting flowers, watching football and being with her wife, one-year-old daughter, and two cats.