Scholarship Recipient: Sam Carlberg

Scholarship Recipient: Sam Carlberg

WGI Sport of the Arts provides a venue for young people to achieve the extraordinary through performance and competition and is committed to supporting these young people as they seek higher education. Since its inception, the WGI Scholarship Program has provided more than $395,000 to WGI performers. The following is the experience 2012 scholarship recipient, Sam Carberg, has had because of color guard. 

For as long as I can remember I would go with my mom to Interplay rehearsals on the weekends.  I remember watching in awe as those young men and women would spin, dance, and twirl their hearts out… but that wasn’t me.  The percussion world was my destination.  Or so I thought.  The summer going into my freshman year I asked my mom if she would show me how to spin a rifle.  So she sat on the back porch teaching me all summer.  Come October she tells me that she signed me up to audition at Interplay.  My heart stopped.  “I’m not ready!” I exclaimed.  I had never taken a dance class, never spun a flag, and never tossed a rifle.  However my mom was very persistent and for that I thank her.  Her pushing me into the activity was the best thing she has done for me.

I struggled all winter which was a very new experience for me.  Frustration cannot even begin to describe how I felt… on more than one occasion.  It taught me how to deal with anger when things didn’t come naturally which is one of the most important lessons a person can learn.  It showed me to never shy away from an opportunity for fear of failure.   By the end of my first winter season I had grown so much and in more than one way.   This growth was evident not only in guard but also in my school life, my social life, and my general outlook on life.

At the end of my freshman year I decided I was going to try out for my high school’s fall color guard.  This was unheard in my high school.  There has never been a guy in the color guard and the notion of it raised some concerns in the community.  Parents felt that the color guard was for girls only and did not support the idea of me trying out.  Some of the children of those parents felt it necessary to share those thoughts in school.  I was called names in the hallways and ridiculed.  I lost some friends in the process but I remembered all the friends I had made at Interplay and knew I would easily replace them.  In the spring I tried out and made it into my school’s fall guard.   The girls were all very supportive and instantly I knew I had found a new home.  

In 2011 Interplay winter guard announced that it would not be coming out for the winter I was distraught.  I didn’t even want to tryout anywhere else because my place was at Interplay.  Not marching that winter opened my eyes to how much I truly loved the activity.  I believe the saying goes, “you never know how much you love something until its gone”.  This past season the team was full of energy unlike any I had ever experienced.  There was a feeling of determination to fill up the hole that a lot of us felt from the year off.  Marching with a group like that will travel with me for the rest of my life and I love every one of them.   I would like to thank WGI for the opportunity it has provided for me with its scholarship.  It has made taking the first steps toward my life long goal a reality. 

If you are interested in donating to the WGI Scholarship Fund, please send your donation to:
WGI Scholarship Donation,
2405 Crosspointe Drive
Dayton, OH 45342

Or you can donate online here.