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Dublin School Board Student Rep. Alexandra Brown Balances Academics, Athletics, Service and Leadership

February 12, 2013

Dublin Unified School District Student Representative Alexandra Brown

While the first day of Spring is over a month away, the next big step towards adulthood is top of mind for Dublin High School seniors, including Dublin Unified School District Student Representative Alexandra Brown. In March, high school seniors will begin to receive notifications on the outcome of their college applications – the large envelope waiting on the kitchen table or an unread email waiting in a smartphone inbox. For all of them, deciding the course of the rest of their lives will really begin.

Over the years, we have written about many talented, motivated and hard-working Dublin students; Dublin School Board Student Representative Alexandra Brown is an exemplary addition.

Alexandra has attended all thirteen years of her primary and secondary education in the DUSD system. Her younger sister, Elizabeth, is a freshman at Dublin High School. Her father Tom has been a Research Scientist for years at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and mother Catherine is a First Grade Teacher at Frederiksen Elementary School.

In addition to being a student, Alexandra has taken advantage of numerous pursuits – within and outside of DHS. As a youth athlete, she continued her ambitions by competing for four years in both soccer and swimming at Dublin High. In alternating seasons, she plays club soccer for the Dublin Cobras and with the FAST Dolphins, respectively. A long time member of Girl Scout Troop 30986, she has taken on the designation of Ambassador Girl Scout, especially given the vast amount of her time dedicated to athletics. With a full slate of AP courses on her academic calendar, Alexandra plans on matriculating through a four-year college post-graduation (she is still waiting on college acceptance notices).

Last fall, Alexandra took on one more responsibility. She is the elected Student Representative to the Dublin High Unified School District Board of Trustees. The goal of this profile is to understand her experience at DHS and to help incoming families prepare for the environment at Dublin High. What are your ambitions/goals following your tenure at Dublin High?

Alexandra Brown: “I will definitely be attending a four-year college after graduation, but I haven’t received decisions from any schools yet so I don’t know where. I have always planned to study chemistry and to work as a scientist, but after being on the school board and following the elections this past year, I am considering pursuing politics in college. Tell us about your interest in science. Where did that come from?

Brown: “My interest in science was sparked from my father, Tom. He has worked as a Research Scientist for many years at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore. His area of specialization is in carbon dating and mapping isotopes.” You mentioned an interest in politics – spurred on by your role on the School Board. How did this all come about?

Dublin Unified School District Student Representative Alexandra Brown name plate

Brown: “While I’ve been pretty active in school, I’ve never run for any elective office. Last May, the role of Student Representative to the Board was available as it would become vacated by Katelyn Haubert after her two-year term. I became interested and placed my name in the Dublin High ASB elections process and I was chosen.” You are mid-way through your board term. As a student, what have you learned about serving through your term?

Brown: “It’s been really interesting. I’ve been able to witness presentations by many of the different school sites within the district. It has also been very interesting to learn about how Professional Learning Communities (PLC) practices are being employed at each different site. I’ve been really satisfied and appreciative of my current role.” “Dublin High’s incoming Class of 2017 will be large with Fallon Middle School and Wells Middle School will be sending an unprecedented number of ninth graders into DHS. What advice do you give to these students and to their families?

Brown: “Simply, don’t wait for an invitation to become involved in extra-curricular activities. The clubs and organizations are very open to welcoming new members. However, each student should ‘make a place for themselves’ attitude as they roll through this four year journey. There is a mentoring program available where upper class students are linked in to incoming freshmen. Take advantage of this opportunity.” On the academic side, what resources are available?

Brown: “High school is a bit different. The transition from middle school represents the need to learn to take care of oneself. The counselors and teachers are excellent at helping students to understand the importance of learning your schedule and their expectations. The assistance is readily available, but you need to pursue it. It is a great preparation for college life.”

How does Alexandra balance a full schedule of academic, athletics, leadership and community service? We met with Alexandra’s mom and Frederiksen Elementary School first grade teacher Catherine Brown to learn more from a parent’s perspective. Given all of Alexandra’s commitments, what was your reaction when she announced to you that she was running for the DUSD Student Representative seat?

Dublin High School Senior Alexandra Brown with mother and Frederiksen Elementary School Teacher Catherine Brown

Catherine Brown: “My instant reaction was a bit of concern – given all of her other activities. However, I’ve known her to make very intelligent choices over the years. My only reservation was that if an added responsibility would encroach upon her other priorities, something else may fall by the wayside.” Please speak to Alexandra’s experience while serving on the school board and what benefits has she experienced?

Brown: “This has really stimulated her interest in politics. We’ve had many dinner table conversations about a myriad of subjects. This has now prompted her interest in pursuing a potential double major in Chemistry and Political Science. At the end of the day, I’m just so proud of her. We’ve raised our children to both be community-minded and to always give back.”

To the incoming Dublin High School Class of 2017, look for mentors like Alexandra Brown to guide your experience. Take ownership of your high school experience: it is possible to find a balance between academics and extracurricular activities.

  1. February 13, 2013 9:00 am

    Thanks for writing this great article, Michael, and as president of the school board, I can say it’s a true honor and pleasure to have Alexandra on the school board. She fully embraces the position, contributes insightful comments on every issue, and ensures that the board considers the students’ perspective. I’m sure she’s going to be an extraordinary success at whatever she chooses to pursue and I wish her the best in the future.

  2. Shelley Fischer permalink
    February 13, 2013 8:41 pm

    Great article about Alexandra James!

  3. Brenda Gundell permalink
    February 14, 2013 10:16 am

    I am extremely proud of you Alexandra. What a role model you are!


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