Dave Ian Dunnet Music Education Scholarship

David Dunnet is somewhat of a legend in music education. He was bandmaster of the Victoria Boys' Band at age 15, and later taught music at Oak Bay High School for 28 years. He was also a UVic adjunct lecturer, then teacher in residence and senior instructor in music education for 27 years, being awarded the title "Emeritus" upon his retirement, something not usually given to someone without a PhD. Former Oak Bay High School students and their parents established the annual "Dave Dunnet Music Education Scholarship" for School District 61 graduates pursuing a career of teaching music in the schools.

Dave was born in Vancouver, BC and raised in Nanaimo, Nelson, Penticton and Victoria. After graduating from Oak Bay High School he attended the University of Washington (Seattle), Northwestern University (Chicago), BerkLee College (Boston) and UVic. He was an active outdoorsman for many years, enjoying hiking, spelunking, boating, fishing and river rafting. Volunteering was an important part of his life and included working with horses and dogs at animal sanctuaries in Canada and the US, a variety of community service and the duties of a certified firearms safety officer and instructor.

In 1984 Mr. Dunnet was recognized as an educator "who has made the most contribution to/impact on music education throughout the world" in the International Journal of Music Education. He was also the topic of a doctoral dissertation from Brigham Young University: "Study of an Exemplary Music Educator" by Dr. Gerald N. King.

So it's obvious that Dave was a gifted teacher, but perhaps his greatest accomplishment is the affection he produces in the hearts of many. The students he influenced range from celebrity musicians (David Foster, Tobin Stokes, etc.) and business leaders (such as the former CEO of Gulf Canada Resources and the senior economist for one of Canada's largest banks) to countless others who will benefit from their association with him. That former CEO, Dick Auchinleck, calls Mr. Dunnet "a phenomenal teacher who really got the most out of us. I learned a lot of things in band that I took into business." They have one thing in common - they all just love the guy!

If you search for Dave's name under RateMyProfessors.com, you'll read comments such as: "There isn't a thing he has told me that I haven't used" from a graduate, and "I wish all my profs were like Dave! He knows his stuff and truly enjoys imparting that knowledge to his students" and "Uncle Dave's the best. This man knows EVERYTHING about teaching you need to know."

Dave Dunnet is also admired for his community service, activities that have been recognized with an Outstanding Community Service Award from the municipality of Oak Bay, many CFAX Radio Citation Rose awards and Air Canada's Heart of Gold Award. The state-of-­the-art new theatre/concert hall in Oak Bay has been named "The Dave Dunnet Community Theatre" in his honour.

A former executive member and an honourary life member of the BC Music Educators' Association, Dave has been affiliated with several other professional associations and has been an adjudicator and clinician for music festivals and contests all across Canada. So how do you conclude the story of such a talented, engaging and highly regarded figure? Let's leave the last word to two UVic students on RateMyProfessors.com: "Bow down to the master!" and "Uncle Dave rocks!" Yes, indeed.

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