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Interview with Rachael Freeman

Freeman, Rachael
Brady, Donna
Date of Interview: 
Relationships with people and places; Then and now
Rachael Freeman talks about her relationship with UNCC.
Charlotte Narrative and Conversation Collection
Collection Description: 
Donna Brady interviews Charlotteans to collect stories for a class project at UNC Charlotte.
Interview Audio: 
DB (Donna Brady): Rachael, please, uh, tell us about some of your experiences.
RF (Rachael Freeman): [CD skips] For a few years and I worked in, uh, the, for the vice chancellor for business affairs. Uh, and in between that I had worked for, the, uh, in the chancellor's office, uh, later became, an, uh, administrative assistant to, uh, Chancellor Woodward. Uh, I worked here for 25 years and have seen the university grow, uh, and, uh, it's been a very exciting time. Uh, we are a campus that has, has done a great deal of, of things on very little money and, uh, we've just had such good faculty and staff and so supportive and it's just been a great experience to be part of the growth of UNC Charlotte. Um, I feel like, uh, that it's my extended family. My husband, uh, has a, uh, Master's degree and a six-year certificate from UNC Charlotte, and my son has a Bachelor's degree and is currently in the Master's program and will graduate in December of this year, and, uh, I have worked here 25 years so it's just a very special place for me and my family we have connections here. Uh, I also have two brothers that, uh, are that work here at the university and, uh, just think that it's so important, uh, such an important of the Charlotte region, and it's such a gift to the people in the Mecklenburg and surrounding counties to, to have the young people, uh, have access to a, uh, higher education in this area.
DB: Rachael, where did you grow up?
RF: I grew up in a little town, uh, called Mooresville, uh, which is there at Lake Norman. Uh, it used to be called the Lake Cit- the Port City of Lake Norman it's now called Ray City, uh, in Iredell County. I attended the South Iredell High School. And um, uh, then I attended Hardbarger Business College and I also took courses at UNC Charlotte. But uh, uh, this I am a native of this area and have, have seen extreme growth in this area, which is the economy, uh, is, is, uh ( ) benefited from, from the growth and, uh, of course we do have congested roads, but, but we do have a great economy and we have so many things available for us in this area, so it's been a great area to grow up in.
DB: Tell us a little more about your experiences working in the chancellor's office for, first, um Dr. E. K. Fretwell, and later for, uh, Chancellor Jim Woodward.
RF: Uh, I had the, uh, extreme fortunate opportunity to work with, uh, and for, Dr., uh, E. K. Fretwell the chancellor, uh, and Dr. Jim Woodward, who is the present chancellor. Uh, when I worked with Dr. Fretwell, it was just so interesting. Uh, he did a lot of traveling and he was part of a lot of the, of the national associations, uh, and he spread the word about UNC Charlotte he, uh, everywhere he went he took UNC Charlotte with him. And it, he made, uh, the, the nation, uh, more aware of, of, uh, where we are, and what we do, and what we provide. Uh, and he was, uh, it was just such a great opportunity to work for him such a brilliant mind, uh, and, uh, like I said, he really, uh, helped UNC Charlotte. He gave our name out to, nationally and internationally, and that was very important to the university at that time. And, and then I had the, a great opportunity to work with, with Dr. Jim Woodward for over eight years, and, uh, and he, uh, was just such a special, uh, uh, person and had such a special love for UNC Charlotte and, uh, truly, uh, was, uh, very, very supportive of, of everything. And, uh, in his way, uh, he helped us get support for the university, uh, through our legislature which we had not had before, and he made us aware in the state so it was very important at that time we needed the funding because we were under-funded and we, we had so many students who wanted to come here, and we didn't have enough space for them, so it was very important the part that he played with all that. Uh, but his, his love for UN-, UNC Charlotte is such, such an inspiration. He and Martha, uh, really, uh, exhibited, uh, a great love for, for the university and for the people here and, uh, so we were so fortunate to have, uh, both- well I didn't work for Dr. Colvard. We were, uh, fortunate to have three great chancellors, and Bonnie Cone as our, as our mother of our university. But, uh, we were so fortunate to have Dr. Colvard, and Dr. Fretwell, and Dr. Woodward we've had three wonderful chancellors. And we have grown tremendously, and it's because of all the hard work and love and concern that these three people had for this university.