It's crazy to even think about this, but after years and years of thinking of what I want to do after college and for my life, I have decided.
Once I graduate from the University of Indianapolis (Bachelor of Science and Music) I will do my very best to audition and join the United States Air Force Band.
As soon as I finish basic training, I will be promoted to Technical Sergeant (My dad was in the USAF for 4 years and never got past staff sergeant). The financial coverage is also just as great. I can start at around $55,000 USD which is about 35k tax-free. They cover for housing, transportation, musical instruments, insurance, etc. The best part about it is that when you join the Air Force Band, that is your primary duty. You are not a soldier in the band, but a musician in the band. I will have the opportunity to be stationed anywhere around the world perhaps. I wouldn't mind either the UK or New Zealand, but I'm getting ahead of myself.
The hardest part will be basic training, not the training itself but not playing horn for 8.5 weeks.
My chops will be entirely gone and I will have to get them back. My auditions also have to be flawless. You have two auditions in the process of joining: the recorded and live one. The live one is only if they invite you back. Think of it as a recall almost. After you pass the live audition you are contracted in.
And if I do that for 20 years, I'll get a pension. So an additional 50% of my annual earnings are put in for retirement. That amount goes to 75% if I stay for 30 years.
So basically, I will have it made: to do what I love to do while still making a lot of money.