Roots (Uc Personal Statement)

The low voices are the foundation of the house, the flour in the bread, the roots of the tree. I am the low brass section leader of the Santa Cruz High Marching Band. When this year began, I had six new people coming into the section. I knew it would be a difficult year but I was determined to create a solid section, even though five of the six newcomers had never played their instruments before.

I remembered my first year in band and how I felt about my section leader, Sasha. When I first joined band I was intimidated by all of the new faces and I didn’t want to try marching. When I told Sasha I wasn’t enthusiastic about the marching she urged me to try it anyway. She told me a lot of people had said they didn’t want to do it at first but then later enjoyed it.

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I thought that I would be the one exception, but after the first competition, I started to appreciate being in the band. Sasha always seemed to know what was wrong and how to fix it; I took every piece of advise she gave me with humility. It was my section leader that introduced me to the band.

When the year started, I wanted to be like Sasha to these new people. I taught the new students the fundamentals of their instruments and the norms of the band. I organized sectional time and pushed them all to refine and to memorize their parts. The competition season started to get closer and we began to worry about how we would sound. Almost half of the band was made up of freshmen or people new to band. Even though I didn’t know how we would sound this year I still always kept a positive attitude and never let my section think pessimistically. By the time competition season began, I had started to feel like Sasha. I felt partly like a teacher and partly like a big brother to my section.

The greatest feeling of pride comes from watching people I sincerely try to help succeed. To me, there is nothing more fulfilling than seeing the looks on the new students’ faces when they see that we have won first place at another competition.

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