At the center of all things Terry Arvie does are two things — family and music. The senior accounting major ends his last semester as an undergraduate student at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln on a high note with a newly released single, “Best Days,” from his sibling-singing group, The Arvies.
“Being in church my whole life, music is what I’ve always known. I come from a musical family, all of our aunts and uncles, they either sing or play some type of instrument, or they do both in the church,” Arvie said. “I’m glad to finally share this song with the world. There is a feeling of accomplishment and pride releasing this.”
Originally from Shreveport, Louisiana, Arvie moved to Omaha more than 15 years ago, leaving behind several family members in his home state. Finding himself in a brand-new place with just his immediate family pushed Arvie and his siblings to become best friends.
“Being 15 hours away from your family can be tough at first. You’re out here in a city of a state where it’s only you and your family, so as we’ve grown, those bonds formed and took shape to become even deeper,” he said. “My family definitely mean a whole lot to me.”
With his musically inclined family, Arvie and his siblings, Ra’Daniel (who also attends Nebraska U as a management major), Jennifer, Taylor and Abigail, formed a group and share their traditional and contemporary gospel sound with those unfamiliar. Their first single, “Best Days,” is a culmination of three years of work.
“We all sat down and talked about it and saw the possibilities of where we could go. The pandemic slowed down the process of recording and getting our song out, but we hit the ground running with getting it recorded and now it’s out,” said Terry, who wrote the song and helped produce it. “We create music that strives to uplift and encourage people, whether they are 6 or 86. Our unique sound stems from its collection of bright and dark timbre which creates an interesting, harmonic contrast.”
Normally sticking to playing the instruments, Terry took to sharing his vocal talents on the track, singing the first lines of the song. Ra’Daniel noted how he and his siblings pushed Terry out of his comfort zone.
“We thought it would be great to have him sing on this song since he wrote it. We also pushed him because he does not sing much but has a nice voice,” he said.
The brothers not only pushed each other musically, but academically as well, as both attend classes at the College of Business. For them, it was business as usual.
“Terry and I have often occupied the same spaces since my birth. Places that he and I aren’t together are actually weird to me. However, being at the same school is helpful. He is able to provide firsthand insight since I’m coming right behind him, especially since we’re in the same college,” Ra’Daniel said.
Having Ra’Daniel around keeps Terry motivated to do better in all things academics and music.
“Iron sharpens iron. It’s good when you have somebody around you who is also striving and progressing and trying to be the best they can be because it motivates you to keep going as well. As the older brother, I can’t let myself be shown up,” Terry said.
Even with a brother at the college, Terry felt he could grow a community of his own through the university’s chapter of National Association for Black Accountants (NABA). As the president of NABA, he hopes students see NABA as more than just a professional development student organization.
“We’re open to all ethnic backgrounds here at the college. We have been progressing toward making a group that feels connected and more like a family, but also is bettering its members, which by that I mean you feel comfortable to talk to us and hang out. I think it goes a long way in helping build the community here,” Terry said.
Aside from the professional aspects of his major, Terry sees accounting as a way to give back to both his community and family. He hopes to make a positive impact on those around him.
“I want to help the people around me and build generational wealth using accounting. I can help my family save money being their accountant. I can also help my church reach its financial goals in a more efficient and effective way,” he said.
With his best days still ahead of him, Terry plans to begin his Master in Professional Accountancy (MPA) at Nebraska this spring after graduation. He already secured a position at Lutz Financial.
“I have enjoyed my time at the university. Every day wasn’t easy, but I am better because of my experience at Nebraska. I have grown professionally and have made meaningful connections with professors, students and event guest speakers,” he said.
“Best Days” by The Arvies is available on these streaming platforms: Amazon Music, Apple Music, Google Play, Spotify and Tidal.