School of Music named after preeminent Australian – Sir Zelman Cowen

The School of Music has been named in honour of The Right Honourable Sir Zelman Cowen AK, GCMG, GCVO, QC, PC.

Sir Zelman’s connection to the University stretches back to its infancy when he argued in favour of its creation. He was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Laws by the University in 2004.

Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Professor Rae Frances said the University wanted to honour one of the most preeminent and innovative Australians of the last 100 years.

“Naming our School of Music after Sir Zelman is a tribute to his enduring love of music and his lifetime of contributions to the academic world and to civic life,” Professor Frances said.

“The University is privileged the Cowen family have agreed to Sir Zelman’s name being honoured in this way.”

The Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music has a long history of success. It is consistently ranked among the best in Australia and is home to a vibrant teaching and research environment where students are exposed to a diverse and challenging range of learning experiences including international study programs to Prato, Italy and New York, US.

The Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music aims to graduate a new type of musician; a musician of the 21st century who will specialise in a particular area of music, but be fully equipped, expert, cognisant of and conversant across a wide musical spectrum.

Lady Anna Cowen said she was delighted to have this honour bestowed upon her late husband.

“To have Sir Zelman’s lifelong passion for music recognised in this way is truly a credit to him and an honour for the family,” Lady Cowen said.

Sir Zelman was Australia’s 19th Governor-General serving from 1977 to 1982. He is regarded as being one of Australia’s most respected and influential Governors-General. Sir Zelman had a life-long dedication to higher education, having held several academic positions both in Australia and overseas. He died in December 2011.