Athon goes to Washington
leaves to join Bush campaign
president of TCUs College Republicans, John Athon,
will bypass school for a year to intern for the presidents
John Athon jokes about being a college dropout, but
taking a year off from school may prove to be an even
Athon, a junior political science major and president
of the College Republicans on campus, left school to
work Monday as an intern for the Bush re-election campaign.
Athons mom, Chris, said, I didnt have
a moment of hesitation that he shouldnt take the
opportunity. I think it is a continuation of his education
not a disturbance.
A longtime family friend of Athons, Henley MacIntyre,
knew Athon from high school and already worked on the
campaign as the assistant to the finance director. Athon
had no thought of receiving an opportunity himself when
he called to congratulate MacIntyre on her job, but
was pleased when she told him spots were still available,
MacIntyre was kind enough to make copies of Athons
resume and send them to appropriate divisions in the
campaign that were looking for interns, he said.
I got lucky because I called her when people had
just quit or gone back to school, Athon said.
I was the right guy at the right place at the
The job could be a steppingstone for Athon, who says
he has been trying to figure out ways to get to Washington,
D.C. He says he might take up residence there if the
right job opens up.
I believe Bush is going to win overall and if
he does there might be opportunities for me in the White
House working some kind of college job with low pay
and long, hard hours, Athon said.
Peter Worthing, assistant professor of history and one
of Athons teachers, said, It wouldnt
surprise me if he ended up in politics professionally.
He has always been interested in politics.
Athon said interns dont usually get paid, and
if he doesnt, he says he will still be happy working
Grant Hewitt, one of the Bush campaigns regional
field directors in West Virginia, said, Athon
is an exciting individual and leader. He understands
what an exciting honor this is. I am pleased to have
him on the team.
said Athon will learn a lot and the skills he does learn
will be invaluable to him in the future.
Athon said he hopes to make contacts at different events
and fund-raisers while working as an intern in Washington,
It is scary taking a year off. I had a great semester
lined up with great teachers and great classes and then
I got a call Jan. 12 from the campaign and they said
they liked my resume, Athon said.
He said the Bush campaign asked him to work for a month
and a half in the summer but Athon requested to be more
involved so he could work through the election process.
You dont work all the way up to the Super
Bowl and not go to the Super Bowl, Athon said.
I told them I would work from January to December,
until the campaign is over and we need to clean out
Taking a year off from college and moving to another
state will prolong Athons education if he decides
to return to TCU.
Im not going to graduate until I am 23 or
24, which means I am going to come back and be that
old guy sitting in the classroom, Athon said.
Leaving Fort Worth will also mean that Athon would have
to leave behind his girlfriend of a year, junior history
major Laura Taylor. She says she is happy to see him
receive this opportunity, but is sad to see him go away.
I feel like a little fish in a big pond,
Athon said. Politics is what I want to do, I will
go as far as it will take me.