I was thinking about what I wrote . . . There are some things the drum corps helped me to progress on, some things they didn't stand in the way . . . and there were some things that I could see deficiencies with that I would have benefited from having a teacher for. I truly enjoyed the experience, and I would not trade it. Now, here is an idea that I think might have merit, and might make sure you get the practice time you need. Think about performing in individuals competition at DCI. Find a good piece that you'd like to perform - something that will challenge you technically, and that will dovetail well with your technical studies. Then you have every reason to work on your studies and a technical piece, AND, you'll have an opportunity to perform. How does that sound?