Junior, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
Athens, OH 4 October 2015 –
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Hundreds of alumni flock in from all corners of the United States to be a part of the Most Exciting Band in the Land one more time. Some band members affectionately refer to Homecoming as “Christmas,” and while the promise of seeing family and friends at the end of it all does add some enjoyment to the week, this is also the time of year where we work our absolute hardest to make sure that our show truly is better than the best ever.
When I was a senior in high school, I came to visit Ohio University on the same weekend that the Marching 110 was putting on their annual Varsity Show. My oldest sister, Rachel, is an alumna of OU and the 110, so I’m sure that it was no coincidence that she insisted that I come visit during one of the most exciting shows of the season. I was tired out from a long day of tours by the time the band was about to play, and to be honest, I would have preferred to have been curled up in bed. I was not prepared for what happened next: it changed my life. When the Marching 110 took the stage, I was absolutely floored. Never in my life had I seen that many people who were truly passionate about what they were doing at one time. They were completely alive, and I wanted to be a part of their group with every part of my being.
Flash-forward three years, and here I am–music section leader to the trombones, nervously preparing for what is sure to be yet another thrilling show in order to impress my sister, who will be coming back to cheer me on. Even with the stresses of school–midterms, group projects, research, and everything else–I wouldn’t trade being a member of the Marching 110 for anything.
So next time you see us shaking it on the field, I hope you will be able to see that there’s nowhere else we’d rather be.
Senior, Mechanical Engineering
Athens, OH 12 October 2014 –
In October of my junior year of high school, I visited Ohio University for the first time to watch my older brother perform with the Marching 110 at a football game. I remember how exciting the halftime performance was and how much the crowd loved the band. I was so proud of my brother, and that visit was a big part of my decision to come to OU.
I auditioned for the band before my freshman year and have been a member all four years. Although it can be overwhelming and exhausting, it really is one of my favorite things about OU. I absolutely love performing at halftime and experiencing the crowd’s reaction, especially after a dance chart. It’s hard to explain that rush we get on the field, knowing that we’re a part of something that brings so much joy and energy to a stadium full of people. The 110 was recently named the ‘Nation’s Best College Marching Band’, which is such an honor, but we don’t do what we do for titles. Our goals every week are to perform to the best of our abilities, entertain the crowd, and have a ton of fun! If we do that, we’ve done our job.
As much as I love being in the 110, my involvement in Cru is what gives me life. I lead a community group of girls on East Green, and many of my best friends are in my Action Group of East Green leaders (pictured).
I love the opportunity I get to work with these awesome ladies and watch how God is growing them! At Fall Retreat last weekend, I made the decision to apply for STINT (Short Term International) with Cru for a year after graduation. It’s not official yet, but I may be ministering to college students in Asia next year, which is both exciting and terrifying at the same time. My path has definitely been shaped by the things I love, both band in getting me to attend OU and Cru in sharing my faith after leaving.
Senior, Mechanical Engineering
Athens, OH 9 September 2014 –
It’s the third week of fall semester, and I’m still having a hard time coming to grips with the fact that this is my last year here at OU. I know I still have two whole semesters before graduation, but I just can’t believe how quickly time is flying by.
This past summer, I interned at Owens Corning Science & Technology Center in Granville, OH in a design role. I loved my time there and learned so much about myself and my abilities in the technical world, as well as the wealth of opportunities available to me after graduation. This looks awesome on paper, but it’s also a little overwhelming. I have to start thinking about what I want to do with the rest of my life, whether that be graduate school, starting my career in engineering, or doing something else entirely like full-time ministry. But, one of the greatest pieces of advice I received from a mentor at Owens Corning was to enjoy my college experience and to soak in every moment and opportunity while at OU. So, that’s exactly what I’m focused on doing this year.
These first few weeks back at school have been a whirlwind. I have been getting to know my Senior Design group and project, performing with the Marching 110, meeting with students to share with them the Good News about Jesus, getting inducted as an engineering ambassador (pictured below), and studying how osteoplast and osteoblast cells relate to the mechanics of bone fracture. My life may seem like a bit of a smorgasbord right now, but I’m loving every single minute!
Senior, Civil Engineering
Athens, OH 15 October 2013 – This semester I was given the opportunity to participate in the Robe Leadership Institute. The course is not a traditional engineering course; instead of equations and diagrams, we are challenged to understand ourselves. I’m not one to keep a journal, and part of the course is weekly reflections. Aside from my blog posts, I think I’ve used the word “I” a total of zero times in my technical writing courses. It’s interesting to sit back and look at how I’ve grown as a student and leader, but more importantly, how I can refine who I am and teach myself to be a better leader.
If I had been challenged to define leadership as a freshman I would have said something like, “the ability to effect change”. Now as a senior my definition has changed dramatically. I would define leadership as “understanding”. To not only understand myself and my needs, but also those around me. To succeed, we must know ourselves. How can I be happy if I don’t know what motivates me? It’s a question I think we should all ask ourselves more often.
On a lighter note, homecoming was last weekend, and seeing the drumline uptown is probably one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen. The marching 110 exemplifies the spirit of Ohio University in their non-traditional approach toward entertainment. That tradition, coupled with the artistic spirit that lives in the hills of Athens Country creates an atmosphere that cannot be matched anywhere. I met several alumni at the annual Russ College alumni tailgate and heard stories as far back as World War II. The fact that alumni older than my grandparents still come back every year really speaks volumes about what makes OU special.
Senior, Industrial and Systems Engineering
Athens, OH 15 October 2013 – The semester is really picking up speed now, but this week seems like a breeze compared to last. Last week was OU’s Homecoming week, and as a member of the marching band, this is an especially important time. It means that any and all alumni who have marched before us were invited back to Athens to reminisce, catch up with old friends, and, of course, march one more time in Peden Stadium. For the current members, excitement is in the air all week as we anticipate the arrival of our graduated members. We put in extra hours and work as we strive to make our performance the best it can be to honor those who have marched before us. It’s hard and adds a strain onto our already busy schedules, but it is all worth it when Saturday comes around and all day is one big family reunion.
At the morning parade and during the football game, the alumni band steals the show as they perform everything just as they did when they were here, whether that was only one year ago or 40. Any downtime is spent swapping stories of antics and past performances. The current members all hear about what it was like marching “back in the day” and hearing the differences, but more often, the similarities, between then and now. The best part is the enthusiasm the alumni have and the love and pride that they have for the band, Ohio University, and Athens. This is something they look forward to year-after-year with more than a few counting down the days and even hours until they step back on the bricks. I definitely take pride in being in the Marching 110 and more importantly, being a Bobcat, and I’m already counting down the days until my first Homecoming as an alum.
Senior, Engineering Technology and Management
Athens, OH 08 October 2013 – I’m currently working through week 7 of my fall semester and it’s been a doozy! This coming week I’ll have several midterms and most people get stress about these things, and I’ll admit I do feel it too, but it’s important from time to time to stop and smell the roses, coffee, or in my case the leaf pile! Athens is absolutely gorgeous during the fall and I love fall because it’s football season and hoodie weather!
This coming weekend is Homecoming and everyone is getting excited. OUr football team is coming back from a great victory over the University of Akron (43-3 OU-Oh Yeah) and we are looking to come back and dominate Central Michigan. After we defeated Akron, I had to call my brother to taunt him because he is currently a senior there; he didn’t find it as amusing as I did of course.
Alumni from Ohio University will be coming down and it’s cool to see how big OU really is. I love Ohio University because it’s a b-e-a-utiful campus and Athens is the definition of a college town. The Marching 110 (OU’s Marching Band) has an annual tradition with alumni of the band. The day before homecoming is when they’re all invited back and they will rehearse with the current band members. On Saturday, alumni will be able to relive the glory days and march with their instruments again. I remember last year’s show vividly and it was flawless, our band takes pride in perfection and in excitement too! OSU may be the best damn band in the land, but OU is the most exciting band in the land!
So enjoy the fall, because it happens only once a year. And fun facts of the day: 1) you are never too old to play in a leaf pile and 2) leaf piles are more fun when raked by someone else–until they chase you away with the rake!