Interim Florida A&M President Larry Robinson promised students that the university’s marching band would continue to deliver quality despite its smaller size.
Robinson was speaking at Friday’s President’s Convocation, an annual gathering of students at the start of the fall semester.
The event marked the university’s famed Marching “100”‘s first performance on campus in nearly two years.
FAMU administrators lifted the band’s suspension in July. The number of members shrank to a little over half due largely to strict new requirements for academic performance and enrollment.
“The size of The Marching 100 has changed for now but it has not diminished the quality of the Marching ‘100’ that we are always proud of night and day on the field and off the field,” said Robinson in his State of University address. “They are extremely dedicated and loving, and I applaud them for that.”
Hundreds of students, teachers and alumni filled the Jake Gaither Gymnasium for the event.
A first-year member of the band said she was “so honored” to perform at the event.
“We are truly blessed that FAMU saw the purpose of the Marching ‘100,’” said Brandie Paulind, a third-year transfer student from Detroit, Mich. “It’s a euphoric feeling.”
Student Government Association President Anthony Siders urged students to become positive examples for their peers and future FAMU students.
“Now is our time to leave our mark. Now is our time to leave our legacy,” Siders said.
Director of Bands Sylvester Young introduced the Marching “100.” Once again the student body stood to their feet and applauded the Marching Band.
“Take everything from FAMU, stand tall and make your way into this world,” said Young.
“It felt good to see them back out there performing. It’s an amazing feeling seeing something so important to our school persevere over what they faced last year,” said second-year student Altrevon Wilson, Jacksonville, Fla.