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SJU senior blends passion for music with academic pursuits

Frank Doyle has long been interested in exercise science and helping athletes perform at a high level.

“I participated in sports in middle school and high school and it’s always something that’s interested me,” said Doyle, who was a member of the cross country and track-and-field teams at Tri-City United (Minnesota) High School.

“I’d like to one day have a career that lets me work with high-level athletes on things like biomechanics – maybe at a Division I school or with a professional sports team.”

Doyle is making progress toward that goal at the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University, where he is majoring in exercise and health science and has worked as an assistant in the exercise science lab on campus the past three years.

But the Johnnie senior also holds a deep love of music, and though he’s not a music major, he’s found plenty of outlets to explore that passion during his time on campus as well.

The trumpet player has been a member of the CSB and SJU Brass Choir and CSB and SJU Wind Ensemble for four years now. He’s also been a member of Johnnie Blend, the SJU a-capella singing group in which he now holds a leadership role. And he is in his first year as a member of the SJU Men’s Chorus.

“Frank is just a wonderful human being and a wonderful student who is so dedicated and intrinsically motivated,” said Dr. Justin Zanchuk, the conductor of both the brass choir and wind ensemble. “He has a lot of self-discipline and that allows him to be successful – not just in music but across a variety of disciplines.

“He serves as principal trumpet in both brass choir and wind ensemble, and his musical leadership goes well beyond just leading his section. He is a role model for his peers.”

Zanchuk said it is common for non-music majors to find ways of exploring their musical talents at CSB and SJU.

“We have so many students on campus who love making music,” he said. “Maybe it’s not something they plan on moving forward with as a career. But they still want to be involved and there are so many opportunities for them to do that.

“We have a lot of incredibly talented music majors as well. But participation in music extends well beyond that.”

Doyle’s own love of music comes from his family – including his father Ted, a 1990 SJU graduate who now teaches math at Tri-City United, and his mother Anne, a speech and language pathologist in New Prague.

His three older siblings – all of whom attended SJU or CSB – were and/or remain involved in music as well.

“Both of my parents are pretty musical,” he said. “My mom sings and plays piano. She’d play as we were running around the house as kids and entertain us. My dad was involved in choir and theater in high school. We were all exposed to music a lot growing up.”

Besides his role in the exercise science lab and his musical pursuits, Doyle has also been involved in SJU Campus Ministry.

“Everyone on campus is really encouraging,” he said. “They want you to try different things. It can be a lot of work, but everything I’ve been involved in has been rewarding in some way. It’s made me a more well-rounded person.”

Doyle is scheduled to graduate this May and plans to go on to graduate school for kinesiology. But he isn’t ready to leave music behind just yet either. He’s talked with Zanchuk and others about ways he might continue to stay involved.

“The people here all genuinely care about how you’re doing, and how you’re progressing as a musician,” Doyle said. “They want to help make you a better player and a better person. I’ve been lucky to find mentors here that have really helped me develop.”

Frank Doyle ’24

Frank Doyle (second from left in green t-shirt) singing with Johnnie Blend.