HOUSTON [July 6, 2016] - Most gifts come wrapped in pretty packaging, but this one is special; because it symbolizes the past, present, and future of Houston Community College (HCC). No one can place a value on the institution’s song.
Dr. Aubrey Tucker, coordinator of the HCC Commercial Music program, and professor in the Division of Audio, Film, and Music Business, composed Always Grateful, which is played at the end of HCC graduation ceremonies. The recent grand opening of the Media Arts & Technology Center of Excellence served as the perfect occasion for Dr. Tucker to gift HCC Chancellor, Dr. Cesar Maldonado, full rights to the HCC Alma Mater.
“I felt that I needed to formally gift it to the college,” said Dr. Tucker. “I wanted to make sure this song was outright owned by HCC and its students - where it belongs.”
The legal transfer of ownership rights to HCC was a parting token from Tucker, who after 31 years of being a teacher, mentor, and friend to students, colleagues, and business partners, is retiring from his day to day activities at the Spring Branch campus.
The accomplished musician came to HCC in 1985 after answering a newspaper ad to start a commercial music program. It opened to 200 students and today the program boasts nearly 2,000 students studying audio, video, film, music business, and academic music.
“He is an excellent professor. He connects with his students,” said Mathew Knowles, former student, current advisory board member, multi-platinum record producer, and father of superstar Beyoncé. “Dr. Tucker taught me that when you live your passion, you never work a day in your life.”
It is that passion, compassion, and dedication to his craft that resonates with everyone who knows Tucker, who plans to travel and continue teaching online for HCC.
“I am so grateful for all the experiences I’ve had at HCC. I really believe in the idea of community college. This place really reaches humanity and gives everyone a chance,” he said.
The music and audio programs are part of the HCC Media Arts & Technology Center of Excellence. To learn more, visit hccs.edu/media.