“I really couldn’t believe it. It’s something you usually just see on TV,“ said Jessica Robins.
As Mumford’s instrumental and vocal music director, Robins had filled out a short application last year without much hope of winning. So she was surprised and excited when she got the email saying she won the $20,000 “Vans Gives a Band” award.
According to the Vans website, the same place you’d go to buy shoes, “Vans Gives a Band!” was created to “inspire and empower students to embrace their creativity through music.”
“Vans believes everyone should be empowered to express themselves creatively and should be given the tools to do so.”
“It’s so great,” Robins said. “Students have been doing a phenomenal job making due with the instruments that we have, but this opportunity will allow us to take our music to the next level.”
Though she was notified by email, the award was announced at an assembly on Sept. 24 in Mumford’s auditorium. The program will receive $10,000 for instruments and another $10,000 to fund the program.
Senior Ka’Maria Jones, who plays on the drum line with the Mighty Marching Mustangs, said she feels like the band is in a better place now.
“It’s amazing that we even have a marching band. Most of the instruments we have are broken or pieced together,” Jones said. ”I’m very excited as far as how our season looks now that there’s money for equipment and repairs.”
The Mighty Marching Mustangs get around. Last Tuesday they performed at the Parade Co. depot, last year for Delta Airlines, and every year at Greater Grace Temple. And, of course, they play at Mumford events.
Robins said Mumford was one of five DPSCD schools that won the award.
“At the end of the school year we’re planning a giant concert with all of us and the things that we won,” Robins said.