By Andy Levine


If you’ve never heard that term “band grandpa” before, don’t feel out of the loop. Dr. Arnie Rosen actually created it two years ago.

Dr. Rosen loved his 27-year career as a gastroenterologist in Rockford, Illinois. But as he contemplated retirement, he thought back to his days in middle school and high school and how much he enjoyed playing in the school band. So one day during a routine colonoscopy, it struck him: I want to go back to the band room and share my deep love of music. Or as he put it: “I want to be a band grandpa.”

He approached the Rockford Public School System and he soon found he wasn’t the only person who liked the idea. A dozen retired professionals stepped to be part of the Band Grandpa program. Each week they volunteer a day or more of their time to work with students and help the district’s music teachers.

For today’s podcast, we shadowed Arnie at the Lincoln Middle School. He’s there every Tuesday working with 70-80 middle school students learning a broad range of instruments.

Second Act Stories is a podcast that shares the stories of people who have made major career changes to pursue more rewarding lives in a second act. You can subscribe on iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify, GooglePlus or wherever you get your podcasts.