Blue Stars initiate collaborative relationship with University of Wisconsin – La Crosse

The Blue Stars have announced the initiation of a collaborative relationship with the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse, aimed at providing a new opportunity to students who want to march Drum Corps and attend college.

Beginning this year, the two organizations will work together with the hopes of providing some of the Blue Stars’ marching members access to a high-quality college education while facilitating their development as leaders within the corps.

“This is an excellent opportunity,” said Blue Stars Executive Director Greg Struve. “During recruiting season, we were consistently hearing from students who were worried about how marching Blue Stars might affect them as they prepare for their first year of college. I think this relationship with UW-La Crosse will help waylay many of those concerns.”

Struve continued, “The relationship also offers many of our existing members from around the country a chance to continue pursuing their academic goals at a top-notch university and be nearer to their Blue Stars family.”

He closed by discussing the possibility that active Blue Stars members may consider applying to the University for the January 2005 semester. “I’ve already heard from several members who are looking into it.”

“There are a number of reasons that we think Blue Stars and UW-L will have a great relationship,” said UW-La Crosse Director of Admissions Kathryn Kiefer. “The corps draws members from all over the country and the world, and we’re excited about the effect that may have on campus diversity.   Also, I’m told that the Blue Stars’ members are often very accomplished academically, which will help with the application process.”

Members’ academic achievements will no doubt be a significant consideration as enrollment at the college is selective. For Fall 2004, the University received over 6,500 applications for approximately 1,600 spaces in their freshman class.

Interest in the University has steadily increased for years, driven by strong programs in education, science and allied health, exercise and sports science, and business. The college is also one of only 12 universities in the country that offer an undergraduate degree in archaeology.

“The Blue Stars are the fastest growing corps in America and UW-La Crosse is one of the strongest colleges in the Midwest. To me it seems like a natural combination,” said long-time Blue Star and UW-L alumnus Brad Furlano. “The work ethic I developed in Blue Stars, combined with the skills I learned at UW-L, went a long way toward preparing me for life in corporate America.”

Those interested in auditioning in December and/or learning more about UW-La Crosse should download an audition packet from the corps’ Web site — www.bluestars.org.

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Drum Corps World is published as an on-line electronic magazine by Sights & Sounds, Inc., Madison, WI. It is supported by advertising from manufacturers, service providers, corps, circuits and show sponsors. The publication began in October 1971 at the same time Drum Corps International was formed and has been produced continuously as a tabloid newspaper until April 2011 and on the Internet since May 2011. It is released monthly, as well as six additional e-mail blasts, one in late June, three during July and two in August.

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