Your Ramblin' Wreck, Our Future

For most of the Marching Band's history, it was made up completely of students that did not major in music. As of 2015, the Marching Band has a growing number of students majoring in the School of Music's first-ever undergraduate degree program: Bachelor of Science in Music Technology.

But many of these students need help to make their dreams a reality - now more than ever, supporting a marching band student also brings the possibility that you're also supporting a music technology student. You can read and learn more about three examples of the kinds of students that are in the marching band, and those that are in the School of Music.

For more information on how you can help more students with stories like Nadia, Kate, or Chalece, please contact Susan Sanders, the Director of Development within the College of Design.

To give to the School directly, click on the link below.When you enter your gift, select "Other designation" and specify it as "School of Music".

Nadia Zaragoza, trumpet player in the Marching Band

Nadia posing in front of the Campanile fountain with her fellow RAT parent.
Photo: Georgia Tech School of Music

Nadia, a San Diego native, visited several college campuses as a prospective student. She quickly realized that Georgia Tech was the only school that made it possible for her to pursue a major in engineering and also do all the other extracurricular activities she was interested in. “Other places would tell me ‘You can do marching band, but it’s hard to do with engineering. Or they’d say ‘You can study abroad, but it’s hard to do with engineering.’ When I came to Georgia Tech, they told me ‘You should totally do marching band! You should study abroad! You should intern! You should do everything. We have so much for you,’” she says.

Nadia is majoring in Materials Science and Engineering, but she spends a lot of time in the music building for her role as a RAT parent within the Yellow Jacket Marching Band. This position, which is supported through the Long Family Scholarship, is one where she helps new members of the band acclimate to life at Georgia Tech. The role is important to her, and one she understands well. “Coming from California, I didn’t know anybody in Georgia at all. So joining marching band was like having 300 immediate friends!” She also serves as a PLUS leader and mentor for physics on campus, and she has gotten many members of the band involved in the program as well. “I feel like when you gain clout in the band, you can help increase awareness within the band of the resources that they have available to them,” she says.

Nadia’s ultimate goal in life, she says, would be to do engineering by day, and play a jazz club by night. For Nadia, Georgia Tech is one of the only places that made it possible to keep her dream of studying engineering AND music with equal parts of passion and dedication.

Kate Bosen – BS Music Technology student and singer

Kate Bosen posing with the score to Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Photo: Georgia Tech School of Music

When Kate Bosen first came to Georgia Tech, she planned on majoring in history. But when she spoke to a professor after one of her choir classes, she realized how much she wanted music to be a larger part of her life. The new BS degree in Music Technology was the perfect program for her to do that. “I realized I missed music, and I was also interested in Music Technology because I can actually get a job afterwards, which I didn’t find from any other music programs around,” says Bosen. Kate’s excellence in academic study, research, and music performance was recognized last year with the Kim Scott Logan Award, the highest honor given to a music technology student.

Kate stays deeply involved in music, both in and out of class. For her music technology capstone project, she is working in Grace Leslie’s Brain Music Lab, which specializes in connecting music to the body, both to discover new modes of artistic expression and to find new therapies for clinical patients. “It’s really kind of poetic – it asks questions like ‘How do you make music out of a heartbeat?’ or ‘How do you make music out of a brain signal?’ she says. In the lab, she is partnering with classmates to create a device that will enable a person to sing who has lost control of their face muscles, such as a victim of a severe stroke. She and her group envision their device as something worn on the face that takes in data when the user “thinks” of a pitch and syllables sub vocally, and outputs that as audio data. The end result would be a person that appears to be silent, but is actually singing. Singing is an important part of Bosen’s life: when she isn’t studying or working on research projects, she serves as president of Georgia Tech A Capella.

Kate has already attracted notice from industry, securing a coveted internship at a music startup and fielding offers for full-time jobs upon graduation. She is also interested in other opportunities, like working through the Fullbright program both to teach English and to foster a music community in a school. The future can go in a variety of directions for Bosen, but one thing seems certain, whatever direction she chooses, music will be involved in a big way.

Chalece DeLaCoudray – MS music technology student

Chalece posing and smiling.
Photo: Georgia Tech School of Music

Chalece studied Music Technology in her undergraduate education, but her major focused more on learning how to succeed in a professional recording studio rather than on advanced research. After graduation she started working with Tree Sound Studios in Norcross for several years before deciding to continue her education.  “As I got deeper and deeper into it, I started realizing that the music technology I studied as an undergraduate was so limited. There was so much more that could be done by intersecting music with advanced technology, and I wanted to be right there in the middle of that,” she says.

When she applied to Georgia Tech, she realized that she did not have the same technical background that most other Tech graduate students received as undergraduates. So to make sure she would qualify for the program, she taught herself the technical skills she needed to succeed. “I went and studied all the math, all of the computer science I could get my hands on. I also took an online Digital Signal Processing course because I knew if I could figure that out, I would be just fine,” she says.

Since then, Chalece has been thriving in the Master of Science in Music Technology program, where she is the recipient of a Herbert P. Haley fellowship. Her current graduate project involves quantifying trap music, a sub-genre of hip hop, and defining what traits within it have enabled it to remain relevant and popular for over 20 years. As she completes her Master of Science degree, Chalece is going to continue to explore these research interests and pursue a Ph.D. in the field.

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