“I’m with you, not above you.”
These are words that senior mathematics major and track athlete Justin Brooks wants to display in his life. From excelling with his speed and agility to demonstrating his passion for others and music, Brooks is a powerhouse on and off the track.
Brooks began his track career at a young age, after he and his twin brother, senior information systems major Josiah Brooks, decided they needed a hobby to pass the time.
Since discovering track, the duo has been an unstoppable force, bringing their best every time they step onto the track, which has helped bring the Lee track program to the standards it has at now.
“We came on a visit to Lee and knew that this is where we were supposed to be,” Justin Brooks said. “Coach Morgan contacted us and thought we could be a good asset to the team.”
With a right-hand man to always depend on, the twins have been inseparable from the start.
According to Justin Brooks, having a brother who also serves as an athletic partner has helped him increase his own athletic abilities, and it gives him someone to experience every aspect of college with.
“It has been really nice to have someone who is an encourager and who always wants to get better. If we win and do really well, we do it together,” Brooks said.
When Brooks is not busy spending his days beating the clock in 400-meter dashes and practicing to improve his skills, he spends his spare time in the music building, as he is pursuing a music and worship minor.
According to Brooks, he was inspired by his father, who is a music minister, to pursue his minor. Brooks also credited Dr. Randy Sheeks, associate professor of music and worship, as an influence.
“I felt a tug to music because I have grown up surrounded by it,” Brooks said. “Dr. Sheeks…is amazing at what he does, and he is someone [who], when he tells me something, I take it to heart. The way that he presents worship music is something that I strive to do.”
As for the future, Brooks has high ambitions, striving to continue running track until he is 40. Brooks also wants to keep a grounded mindset, as he wants to be a friend to everyone he meets, picking up his role as a leader when it presents itself.
“[To my younger self], be the leader that God has called you to be,” Brooks said.