Official wireless provider to visit eight HBCU campuses to present scholarship checks
Houston, Texas — The Pepsi National Battle of the Bands presented by Toyota (NBOTB) today announced Cricket Wireless (Cricket) is presenting scholarship funds to eight Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) marching bands on the respective campuses throughout August. Cricket helped to contribute to the overall $184,000 in scholarships to be divided amongst this year’s participating bands. The check presentation tour is part of Cricket’s commitment to the NBOTB to support its HBCU Band Together scholarship initiative to reach even more HBCU marching bands and students, to promote positive impact.

“It’s the commitment from sponsors like Cricket that make it possible for the National Battle of the Bands to actualize our mission of raising scholarship dollars, creating opportunities, and elevating the exposure of HBCU bands and their students each and every year,” says Derek Webber, Executive Producer, National Battle of the Bands.

“The strong communities created by HBCUs have a rich history and the band programs create a large part of this heritage,” said Cricket Wireless Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Tony Mokry.  “We are honored to continue this support of the National Battle of the Bands. Cricket is focused on inspiring smiles, one meaningful connection at a time.”

The check presentations will occur on each HBCU campuses followed by pizza parties. The following schools will receive scholarship funds as part of the tour:
  • Grambling State University, 8/13/22, 4pm
  • North Carolina A&T State University, 8/13/22: 6pm
  • Southern University, 8/16/22, 4pm
  • Bethune Cookman University, 8/17/22
  • Alcorn State University, 8/18/22, 7pm
  • Prairie View A&M University, 8/19/22, 5:30pm
  • Alabama A&M University, 8/19/22, 6pm
  • Kentucky State University, 8/22/22, 4pm

HBCUs are known for their rich history of robust academics, social and community activism, devoted alumni, and high-stepping, soulful marching bands. An HBCU marching band’s performance is as much about the music as it is the movement —both of which channel the boundless spirit of the institutions they represent. While HBCU marching bands are beloved and celebrated, the unfortunate reality is they also are underfunded.

In additional financial assistance, Cricket is proud to continue promoting and amplifying the HBCU bands’ and band members’ stories and assisting the NBOTB in expanding its HBCUs Band Together scholarship initiative to reach even more HBCU marching bands.
The battle of the bands is an iconic tradition, not only amongst HBCUs, but as a staple in American culture. The National Battle of the Bands was created to be the nation’s best kick-off to the fall marching band season by showcasing new performances of the country’s top marching bands. It offers unmatched exposure to the marching bands of HBCUs and has broad appeal among varying age groups and socio-economic demographic groups.

For more information about the NBOTB visit,

About National Battle of the Bands: Enhancing the exposure of Historically Black Colleges & Universities marching bands, while developing students through music and education, the NBOTB is an annual musical showcase. The National Battle of the Bands' mission is to enhance the exposure of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and their marching bands, the roles they play in educating aspiring musicians, and developing future leaders. Event organizers have generated more than $700,000 in scholarships for the participating colleges and universities. The 2022 event is in Houston, Texas and features dozens of HBCU bands from across the country.


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