Rossi named sergeant major in the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Band
Civil engineering sophomore Nicholas Rossi was recently named sergeant major in the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Band, making him the highest ranking junior cadet in the band.
“I’m able to be a second set of eyes and ears for the commander to help inform him about what’s going on in the band,” Rossi said. “It’s my job to take his mission and vision and own it – not just push it across the band without any reasoning behind it.”
Since joining the band his freshman year, Rossi has moved from drums to one of two of the band’s cymbal players to one of three bass drum players. He started playing drums in the sixth grade and continued playing in high school. When two of his cousins joined the Aggie Band, Rossi came to campus to watch march-ins, where he said he remembers thinking, “Wow, I want to be a part of that.”
“It’s something bigger than yourself, and that’s something I’ve really come to learn,” he said.
Rossi said he did not know what a sergeant major was when he first joined the band but has learned more about the position and its role in behind the scenes operations to ensure the band is functioning properly.
“You don’t want recognition for yourself,” Rossi said. “Just to have the thrill of waking up in the morning and saying, ‘Wow, I’m in the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Band and I get to have a hand in it and be a part of taking care of everyone and making sure they’re where they’re supposed to be and doing what they’re supposed to be doing.’ It’s very humbling.”
Rossi, who is from Sealy, Texas, worried he would become homesick. However, becoming a part of the Corps of Cadets and training alongside other cadets quickly gave him a group of friends who have helped him grow over the years.
“The Corps, the band and my upperclassmen have really helped me focus on developing my goals and what I want to get done,” he said. “They’ve helped my work ethic grow and increase how effectively I can complete all of my tasks.”
Pursuing a degree in civil engineering
Rossi said he chose civil engineering after months of research his freshman year. He spoke with engineering upperclassmen, professors and visited with student organizations to help him decide the best course of action for himself. Since joining civil engineering, Rossi said he has developed another set of friends outside of the Corps.
“It’s good because I can get a perspective of the Corps from someone who is not within, see how they view things and learn why they came to Texas A&M,” Rossi said.
Rossi said he does not have a set career for after graduation, but instead plans to go with whatever opportunities become available and doing his best to be as prepared as he can be.
“I strongly believe in not trying to force things because from what I’ve seen with anything in life is that if you try to force it, it will break and just won’t work out the way that you want it to,” Rossi said. “Every day I find some way to improve myself and improve something around me.”
As a sophomore, Rossi has taken his role as a model for freshman cadets seriously, aiming to teach them the routine of being a cadet and leading by example. He said he has learned that what people say can have a real impact on other people, which has influenced where he puts his values.
“Whatever value you dedicate to your things, whether it’s a goal or an object, others will see that and emulate it,” he said.