Butler Tech is shining the spotlight on Eddie Vidales, a senior in the Instrumental Music program at the School of the Arts. Eddie’s passion for music and his aspiration to serve his country recently allowed him to secure a coveted spot in a prestigious Marine Corps band as a career bassist.
The path to enlistment proved both challenging and rewarding. Vidales had to pass the ASVAB and pass specific music-related tests to qualify for the Marine Corps band. His journey included an audition, where he demonstrated his musical talents through swing, bossa nova, soul/R&B, and classical pieces. Vidales’ performance earned him a place in the exclusive ranks of Marine musicians, making him one of only two individuals nationwide to secure a spot this fall with just ten bands available.
Reflecting on his accomplishment, Vidales expressed his determination to persevere through the rigorous training of boot camp and beyond.
“The biggest commitment at this point is just making it through boot camp and not quitting. I may hate it but there’s nothing worth dropping out because it’s too hard,” said Vidales. “My focus now is to get into the best shape possible for boot camp.”
Vidales says his sights are set on reaching the rank of master sergeant, a goal that could take more than fifteen years to reach which speaks to his dedication to a career in the Corps.
The Musician Enlistment Option Program (MEOP) provides musicians like Vidales the unique opportunity to combine their musical passion with military service. MEOP recruits undergo Marine Corps Recruit Training and advanced instrumental and academic training at the Naval School of Music, setting the stage for a full career as Marine musicians.
Congratulations Eddie! We wish you the absolute best as you begin your journey with the Marine Corps band.