Charge Into the Next Century

Charge Into the Next Century

Inspired by the marching band’s charge down the Nippert Stadium steps at home football games, Charge into the Next Century is the Bearcat Bands’ initiative to put a quality instrument in the hands of every band member.

The Bearcat Bands include nearly 350 students participating in the spirit band program (marching band, color guard, twirlers, and pep bands); multiple concert bands; jazz ensembles; various brass, woodwind, and percussion ensembles; beginning instrumental lessons; the new “beginning band”; and educational clinics.

The vision of Bearcat Bands is for the University of Cincinnati to be the most musical campus in America.


Replace | Repair

Our goal is to provide a one-time sweep of the Bearcat Bands’ instrument inventory; allow for additional instrument purchases to accommodate the growth and popularity of the band; and endow a fund for ongoing instrument maintenance.

Many students in the band currently use their own personal instruments in all weather conditions. A good number of instruments in the school-owned inventory are much depreciated and even irreparable.

It is uncommon for peer-institution band programs to have an arrangement such as ours, where students are heavily depended upon to provide and repair their own instruments.

The success of this fundraising campaign is critical to ensure the band is inclusive and accessible to students, and for the uniformity of the band’s sound and appearance resulting from the consistent use of high-quality, matching instruments:

  • Students would not be turned away from participation in the band because they do not have an instrument.
  • Repairs to personal and school instruments would not need to be substantially or wholly subsidized by students.
  • All students would have access to an instrument for use in all weather conditions.
  • The band director would have increased capacity to ensure the band sounds and looks as it should.

Immediate Needs (Summer 2019) Purchase 4 sousaphones and accessories

Short-Term Needs (Spring 2020) Complete purchase of full sousaphones set and accessories Repair, refurbish, and sterilize current instrument and accessories inventory

Mid- and Long-Term Needs (Fall 2020 and beyond) Supplement existing inventory of woodwinds and brass instruments Endow a fund for ongoing instrument maintenance and purchases


Instrument Level Giving Gifts in the following amounts provide the funding to purchase each instrument, including the case, mouthpiece, accessories, and ongoing sanitation and repairs:

  • Piccolo: $1,900
  • Clarinet: $1,500
  • Alto Saxophone: $1,900
  • Tenor Saxophone: $2,200
  • Baritone Saxophone: $5,900
  • Trumpet: $2,100
  • Mellophone: $2,300
  • Baritone: $2,700
  • Trombone: $2,400
  • Sousaphone: $10,000


Help Bearcat Bands celebrate its Centennial in 2020 and Charge into the Next Century by replacing and repairing its instruments.

“There is no part of the human soul that music cannot touch, and I hope to never turn away a student who comes to us. Experiences in band go far beyond the already substantial demands of the rehearsals and performances: students significantly develop their humanity and abilities to multitask, self-discipline, and work together. We are positioned to leverage this incredible power for the betterment of our campus, city, and society. This is an exciting and transformative opportunity for which I am grateful to have the support of a growing coalition of passionate UC alumni and administrators.”

~ Chris Nichter, Director of Bearcat Bands

Bearcat Bands is a unit of UC’s Division of Student Affairs, and maintains partnerships with UC Athletics and the College-Conservatory of Music. Students receive little to no scholarship support for their participation in the band. The band relies on funding from student fees and the generous support of donors.