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NGU Athletic Bands Receive New Marching Orders

Tigerville, SC (July 30, 2020) This fall, Gary Rhoden will step into the role of director of athletic bands at North Greenville University.

Rhoden has spent the past nine years in public education. Ensembles under his direction have received numerous accolades and awards and performed at the Bands of America’s Regionals, Super Regionals, and Grand National Competitions, as well as the Allstate Sugar Bowl and even Walt Disney World.

In his new role, Rhoden will direct the NGU Marching Crusaders, the marching band ensemble that performs at all home football games, select away games, area parades, and numerous high school competitions throughout the school year.

He desires to create a program at NGU that benefits students “personally, spiritually, educationally, and professionally” and to give music majors “experiences that will benefit them as players, performers, and future educators.”

After the uncertainties many NGU families have experienced this past year during COVID-19, raising school spirit is one of the many benefits the Marching Crusaders will deliver with Rhoden at their head.

“My vision for the program is to make the athletic bands an exciting and memorable time for every member, faculty member, and spectator involved,” he says. “I want every student who is in our marching band to remember their time with us as one of the best experiences of their time at NGU. I want every person attending football or basketball games to remember our performances because we were engaging and fun.”

Rhoden holds a bachelor’s degree in music education and a master’s degree in school leadership; he’s also currently pursuing his doctorate in educational leadership at Clemson University.

He says that he feels especially excited to join the NGU family since his wife, Ashley Rhoden (’19), obtained her master’s in music education from NGU. Ashley previously taught orchestra in two Greenville County high schools and now stays home to take care of their daughter, Emilia.

Rhoden will join NGU as the new director of athletic bands at the start of the Fall 2020 semester, just in time to direct the Marching Crusaders throughout the upcoming football season. 

NGU’s athletic bands are open to all students. Any enrolled students who enjoy music, sing, play an instrument, or spin are encouraged to join — both music majors and non-music majors alike.

Learn more about NGU’s student music ensembles or sign up to join one at ngu.edu/ensembles.


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