Archway Professionals Share Past Experiences as Redcoats

April 20, 2018

Apart from serving as Archway Professionals for UGA’s Archway Partnership, Sarah Adams and Sam Perren have something else in common—they both are alumni of the UGA Redcoat Marching Band. Though they did not know each other personally as members of the Redcoats, they share similar experiences and memories that they carry on with them from Sanford Stadium and into their current careers.

Adams, who is the Archway Professional for Colquitt County, played the trumpet in the Redcoats from 2005 to 2009. She says through her time as a band member, she made lifelong friends and learned a few lessons that she still uses today.

“Our motto was ‘Hurry up and wait.’ If you’re not 15 minutes early, you’re late. It encouraged a strong work ethic from the beginning. Not every college student enjoys waking up to be at 5 a.m. outdoor practice on an early game day, especially when it’s 28 degrees, but knowing you were going to be there with 400 of your closest friends made it easier,” said Adams.

When asked what she enjoyed most about her time in the band, she says the friends and experiences impacted her the most. Adams made friends from all over the nation, and even a few from across the world. She had the chance to represent the Redcoats in China as part of an ambassador program in 2006, which was the first live marching band performance many had seen. Some people paid a month’s salary to come

out and watch the Redcoats perform and pose for photos with them.

For Sam Perren, who played the trombone from 2007 to 2010, the takeaway from his time in the Redcoats is similar. He too was able to meet people from all over with various backgrounds who brought different perspectives to the field.

“I got to travel all over the south with my best friends, watching football and being a part of the spectacle and pageantry of it all every weekend,” Perren said. “It is pretty hard to beat SEC football. Almost all of my friends in colleg

e were in the Redcoats, so we were able to travel and experience all of the excitement together.”

Both Adams and Perren agree that their time as members of the Redcoat Marching Band has greatly influenced their professional careers outside of college, including their positions at Archway. The marching band has served as

a major talking point for both of them and has provided them with contacts from all over the country.

“It’s easy to break the ice professionally with jokes or anecdotes from my Redcoat days, and it’s a great way for you to stand out by sharing football stories with a unique perspective,” Adams said. “Your band friends become business contacts and since many of the Redcoats had different majors and minors, you can find us virtually anywhere. A few months ago, I flew with my family to visit my grandmother, and one of my Redcoats friends was a stewardess on our flight!”

“There are thousands of Redcoat alumni all over the country, so it definitely helps you build a network and gives you a shared experience with a lot of people that you will meet,” Perren agrees.

When it comes to their favorite memory from their time in the Redcoat Marching Band, both Adams and Perren have one special game in mind—the 2007 Auburn Blackout game.

“That was probably the loudest I’ve ever played, but the crowd was so loud you could still not hear a thing. It was like the crowd was too loud for your brain to process,” Perren said.

“There had been rumors on campus all week that the football team was going to wear black. We were hyped and the fans really showed up that night,” Adams adds. “I remember feeling the thundering of the players rush behind us during our pregame performance. It was so loud that you couldn’t hear the band, even on the field. I think I had goosebumps for the whole game.”

No. 10 UGA would go on to defeat the No. 18 Auburn Tigers while wearing all black jerseys in an emotional 20-45 victory in Sanford Stadium, one of the most memorable wins in recent UGA football history. For Adams and Perren, it was the highlight of their careers as Redcoats and a game that they will never forget.

As fellow Archway Professionals, Perren and Adams will continue their camaraderie off the field and make connections with people all over the state to improve Georgia’s local communities.

By Patricia Bacon

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