Strategic initiative designed to introduce high-achievement students to university-level performing arts organizations and schools Drum Corps International announces the launch of SOUND Education, a program of Schools, Organizations & Universities Networked with Drum Corps International. The SOUND Education program is a strategic initiative established to introduce the organization's high-achieving performing arts students to university-level performing arts schools and organizations.

"Drum Corps International is committed to excellence in music education," said Dan Acheson, Executive Director for Drum Corps International. "The SOUND Education program allows us to reinforce the benefits of higher education by introducing students to colleges and universities that are understanding of the positive impact of drum corps." As part of the SOUND Education program, participating schools will be showcased in a festival-like setting at select Drum Corps International major events with informational displays and literature distribution. Students will have the opportunity to be introduced to and learn more about these schools and organizations which are dedicated to helping participants in Drum Corps International events to become aware of tremendous, new and varied educational opportunities. Each year, more than 8,000 students audition for less than 3,500 positions available in top-tier Drum Corps International member corps. Nearly 60 percent of these participants are full-time college students pursuing music or other performing arts degrees. Of those Drum Corps International corps members still in high school, 65 percent indicate their intent to major in music or other performing arts at the university level, validating the need for this strategic SOUND Education initiative.
Among the pilot schools enrolled in the SOUND Education program are Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, Ala., and Morehead State University in Morehead, Ky. "The SOUND Education program is an excellent idea which will enable Drum Corps International to better serve music students across the country, even if they are not currently involved in a DCI drum corps," said Kenneth Bodiford, director of bands at Jacksonville State University and also director of the Spirit from JSU Drum and Bugle Corps. "By helping to connect students interested in continuing their education in music with accredited programs on a national level, SOUND Education is able to create an impression which is far more valuable than simply looking through a course catalog or browsing a Web site. We see the tremendous value in this and we are pleased to be among the first universities to become a part of this partnership." In conjunction with the SOUND Education program, Drum Corps International has also developed the popular and highly-successful Commitment to Excellence program, an educational initiative involving high school bands and band members. To high schools, participating in the "C2E" program, Drum Corps International provides curriculum-based music education material and other opportunities, including performance and instructional DVDs, and performance clinics. Through its support and commitment to the SOUND Education and Commitment to Excellence programs, Drum Corps International directly links post-high school performing arts schools and organizations with highly motivated students that participate in and follow the activities of Drum Corps International and its member corps. Schools and organizations interested in joining the SOUND Education program, can send inquiries via e-mail to