Not long after taking up the clarinet in junior high, Brady went on to become drum major at Berkner High School in Richardson, Texas, becoming the highest ranking student leader of the school’s largest organization. Simultaneously, he earned the state’s highest award for instrumentalists when the Texas Music Educators Association selected him as an All-state musician for his performance on the bass clarinet.
“I have always had a great passion for music thanks to the fantastic band directors who I have had throughout my life,” says Brady. “I owe all of my successes, inside and outside of music, to them.”
For his first three years in the Longhorn Band, he marched playing the saxophone during the fall football season, and played a variety of clarinets in the university’s Wind Symphony during the spring.
Despite his passion for music, Brady chose to pursue civil engineering.
“I could have chosen to be a performance major or a music teacher but those never really appealed to me,” says Brady.
Brady hopes to work in transportation engineering after graduation in 2009, finding the sociological aspect of the field appealing.
“All the branches of civil engineering revolve around meeting people’s needs and engineering a high standard of living, but transportation seems to be the most dynamic field,” he explains. “The fact that transportation engineers design to satisfy present and future needs is what drew me in.”
As a civil engineer, Brady remains in good company among band members. Engineering students represent the largest percentage (one-fourth) of the entire marching band, with nearly 95 students pursuing some type of engineering major. Carnochan affirms most college bands have a similarly high proportion of engineering members.
Besides the band’s demand for strong intellect and love of music, Brady believes the laid-back feel to the band attracts many engineers.
“Longhorn Band offers a really high-quality, low-stress environment,” says Brady. “I think that appeals to busy engineering majors, who know they can come in, do something they love — and are already very good at — and not have obligations outside of rehearsals and game day.”
On August 30 Brady is set to march into DKR-Texas Memorial Stadium for what is sure to be among his greatest accomplishments to date.
“That first march will probably be awesome,” he says. “I’ll be nervous out of my mind, but I know I’ll pull through and it will all be fine.”