The St. Ambrose University Fighting Bee Marching Band is a corps-style marching ensemble dedicated to musical and visual excellence.
The Fighting Bee Marching Band is a highly visible organization on campus, throughout Eastern Iowa, Western Illinois, and the Quad Cities.
Students of any major are welcome to join!
Marching Band Scholarship
All members of Marching Band, Indoor Marching Arts, and Drumline/Front Ensemble receive an automatic $2,500 scholarship for every academic year you are a member. No auditions. No cuts. If you have a great attitude and are willing to work hard, we will find a place for you in this group!
Bee Part of Something AWESOME
The Fighting Bee Marching Band is growing by leaps and bounds with more than 80 musicians in the band, drumline, and colorguard. Bee part of this amazing group.
40 Under 40
Yamaha announced in February that it has named Megan Cooney as an honoree of the newly launched 40 Under 40 music education advocacy program.
More Information About Marching Band
Part of Marching Band is the Pep Band that performs in the spring for all home games of men's and women's volleyball and basketball (approx. 5 games per sport).
All woodwind and brass players who receive an Athletic Band Award are required to participate in pep band. Our two pep bands rehearse together once a week. Rehearsals begin mid-fall semester and continue through the spring. The two pep bands have members of equal playing ability; two bands allows students to work around their academic and extra-curricular schedules.
There is NO AUDITION required to participate and this ensemble is OPEN TO ANY STUDENT regardless of major. Game performances are run by either the Athletic Band Director or drum majors and both bands use drumset players.
Any student on campus is allowed to join this ensemble, however, those who only participate in pep band do not receive a scholarship.
Signing up for Pep Band is easy! Enroll in MUS-126 A/B Pep Band during spring registration. Students register for either 1 CREDIT or 0 CREDIT. Participation in this ensemble fulfills the required general education fine arts credit.
Our pep band program prides itself on entertaining our crowds and supporting our athletes.
Most of our music encompasses current pop tunes, classic rock, and funk.
We perform a large book of repertoire that is constantly updated in hopes of never hearing the same song twice in one game.
The Fighting Bee Band prides itself on providing opportunities for students across campus to develop real-world skills through working within the musical medium.
We are an organization dedicated to ensuring that our student members and staff graduate with knowledge and passion that will fuel the rest of their lives.
Our student leadership work every day to ensure our organization is growing and developing in a healthy way. GO BEES, GO BAND!
Ms. Megan Cooney serves as Director of Athletic Bands, Associate Director of Bands, and Instructor of Percussion Studies at St. Ambrose University. Cooney established the St. Ambrose Fighting Bee Athletic Band program in 2016, the SAU Color Guard and Winter Guard programs in 2018 and the SAU Front Ensemble program in Fall 2020. Additionally, she teaches applied percussion lessons, percussion methods, and several undergraduate music education courses.
Cooney is a native of New Jersey and earned her B.M. in Instrumental Music Education from Rowan University in 2011 with a concentration in percussion performance. While at Rowan she studied percussion performance with Professor Dean Witten.
In 2014 Cooney earned her M.M. in Wind Conducting from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. During her graduate degree she continued her study of percussion performance and contemporary music with Professor Ayano Kataoka. For over thirteen years Cooney has held professional teaching and staff appointments with athletic bands, drumlines, and front ensembles across the country.
Cooney currently serves as Principal Percussionist of the Eastern Iowa Brass Band and Timpanist with the Tallgrass Brass Band. She could not be more proud of the growth and success of the Fighting Bee percussion programs and is happy to be a part of the greater Quad Cities area music community.
In 2015, Megan was named a conducting fellow with the Cortona Sessions for New Music where she directed three world premiere performances. During her time at UMass she was nominated for the UMass Amherst Distinguished Teaching Award, the highest award given at the university for teaching faculty or graduate students.
While at Rowan University she received the W. Clarke Pfleeger Award for Musical Excellence.
Megan also is a member of the nationally recognized music organization Sigma Alpha Iota.
Education: Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education with honors, University of Northern Iowa
Current Position: Guard Caption Head, SAU Marching Band
Emily's color guard experience began with her membership in the Davenport North High School Color Guard. In her junior and senior year, she was captain.
Emily's passion for color guard is fueled by 18 years of dance experience.
Emily continued pursuing her marching arts passion with the University of Northern Iowa Panther Marching Band. She oversaw the establishment of a competitive winter guard and served as captain of the guard during her junior and senior year.
In 2015, Emily was named Guard Girl of the Year and in 2016 won the Panther Marching Band Outstanding Leadership Award. Also in college, she took two international trips with the marching band, performing in London and Rome.
Director of Indoor Marching Arts
Marching Percussion Director
Ms. Megan Hobbs is not only in charge of overseeing all aspects of the battery program at St. Ambrose, she is also leading the establishment of our new front ensemble and indoor percussion program. Hobbs has always had a passion for percussion and teaching. After graduating high school she pursued a degree in percussion performance and music education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Hobbs has been involved in the marching arts since 2008 when she started her marching career with the Kenosha Beats, an independent percussion ensemble out of her hometown of Kenosha, Wisconsin. Her introduction to drum corps was with the Kilties Drum & Bugle Corps based out of Racine, Wisconsin in 2010. As a member, she went on to win the DCA I&E marimba competition in 2011. While marching as a member, Hobbs pursued taking on staff roles in 2012 and has continued to be active in the organization ever since.
Her DCI debut was spent aging out with the 2015 Colts front ensemble and 2016 WGI Independent World Class champions, Rhythm X. She has also enjoyed being a part of recreational ensembles such as the Milwaukee Bucks Drumline and Tundraline, the official drumline of the Green Bay Packers.
Her previous teaching appointments include: working as a technician, coordinator, arranger, and consultant, spanning front ensemble work with the Kilties Drum & Bugle Corps, various Wisconsin high schools, indoor drumlines, and several high schools in Ohio. Additionally she has served as the front ensemble coordinator for the WGI Independent Open Class finalist, ConneXus.
Hobbs is in her third year working with the Colt Cadets front ensemble, and continues to consult for indoor and outdoor groups throughout the Midwest. She is excited to lead the Fighting Bee marching percussion program, and help facilitate the growth of percussion studies throughout the greater Quad Cities area.