Part I in a multi-part series:

This summer, Drum Corps International conducted an extensive research program designed to provide information and insights into the young people who participate in drum corps. Dubbed "Project Persona," the program is headed by Boston Crusader staff member, Chauncy Holder, and is part of his University of Wisconsin MBA course work.

DCI invited more than 2,500 students participating in Division I drum corps to take an online survey this May. More than 1,000 students responded to the online survey portion of Project Persona. The in-depth marketing research study also included detailed in-person interviews, a rookie ethnographic study and focus groups.

As corps members prepare for and compete in the 2006 World Championships this week, looks at exactly who those people are. Here is part I of those Project Persona findings: