Congratulations to Devonte Merrick of DeKalb, recipient of the 2019 Palmer Family Music Education Scholarship award. During the June 11 DeKalb Municipal Band concert at Hopkins Park (DeKalb), Devonte was honored with the $3,500 scholarship award from the DeKalb County Community Foundation.
Devonte plans to attend St. Olaf College in the fall, pursuing a degree in music education. Sharing that some of the most influential figures in his musical career and life have been his music teachers, Devonte stated in his essay, “I love music! When I play a piece, I get really engaged in it and fall into a new world. What gives me the most joy on this planet is teaching others to obtain the love, respect, and passion that I have for music.”
Devonte’s connection to music began in his elementary school music class. Since then, he’s participated in the Jazz Ensemble, Wind Ensemble, Steel, Marching, and Pep Bands, the Symphony Orchestra, and he is the leader of a group that he created for jazz students at his school, the Swingcronicity Jazz Combo. Devonte will be the first in his family to graduate college. He looks forward to pursuing a career in music education that will not only change the trajectory of his life, but his family’s life as well.
Scholarship funds are an easy way to support and promote further education of youth in our community. Contribute to any fund at the Community Foundation including the Palmer Family Music Education Fund online or by mail to the DeKalb County Community Foundation, 475 DeKalb Ave., Sycamore, IL 60178.
Dee Palmer, director of the DeKalb Municipal Band since 1948, passed away in November 2011 at the age of 97. Palmer and his family have contributed to the musical pleasure of thousands of people in DeKalb County for over 160 years. The Palmer Family Music Education Scholarship was set up in 2009 to honor this local music legacy.
Pictured above: Siblings Roger and Gary Palmer congratulate Devonte Merrick, recipient of the 2019 Palmer Family Music Education Scholarship award.