From Kats to Dawgs, Hicks named band director at Burnet High School


photo or infographic by Katherine Lee

Assistant Band Director Andrew Hicks marches with the band during the homecoming parade. Hicks was recently named the head band director at Burnet High School.

by Hailey Alvarez, VOW staff

After seven years as a Wildkat, assistant band director Andrew Hicks is saying good-bye. After being named the new band director at Burnet High School, he is moving to the Texas Hill Country. 

 “My new job is the director of bands for Burnet ISD,” Hicks said.

Hicks started his time in Willis at Lynn Lucas Middle School and then came to the high school. While at the high school he led the jazz band and assisted band director Chris Allen with all other bands. 

“For jazz band, the expectations were insanely high, and the students rose to every challenge I ever put in front of them,” Hicks said. “I tried my best to provide an environment where our students were willing to take risks and push themselves to achieve high levels of success.”

Some of the band students are shocked by the news of the departure. 

“I have known Mr. Hicks since sixth grade,” junior Jeremy McCrorey said. “He has always helped during my time in the band. Hearing about him leaving really brought me down.  He was the one I was always depending on.”

A lot of students are going to be affected by the choice. 

“Personally, having Mr. Hicks my last three years, I definitely think that the style of teaching will change,” junior Victoria Moseley said. “Not everyone teaches things the same way, and that will be a big change for us. It’s something we will definitely have to adapt to over time.”

Brabham band director Joseph Dittfurth will be coming to the high school to fill the vacancy as assistant band director.

“I think that Mr. D is going to be awesome,” sophomore Shaina Wilson said. “He has worked with Brabham for almost as long as Mr. Allen has been with Willis. We all know him at least a little bit, and I think he is going to learn a lot from us, and we’ll learn just as much and more from him.”

Hicks is excited about his new job, but knows he will miss his days as a Wildkat.

“I will miss the incredible students in Willis,” Hicks said. “They are some of the hardest working, enthusiastic and kind-hearted human beings I have ever known. I think I will always remember the first time we ever went to state the most. The reactions from the students and parents were priceless, and it was one of the most surreal moments in my life!”