A new scholarship at West Virginia University will honor the memory of a dedicated educator and music lover. The Florence H. Freeman Honors Music Scholarship will provide financial support to students enrolled in WVU’s School of Music and Honors College.

Florence H. Freeman, originally from Beckley, W.Va., earned a B.A. in English from WVU, where she was an active member of Alpha Delta Pi sorority. She taught for many years and was a community organizer in Okemos, Michigan, and Slingerlands, N.Y.

Florence was an avid musician, according to her husband, Thomas M. Freeman, Ph.D. also a WVU graduate and a retired professor and academic administrator.

“She played piano and organ at an accomplished level,” Thomas said. “She sang in church choirs, in music festivals, and was a founding member of the Friendship Singers, a popular group in New York’s Albany area.”

The Freemans were regular attendees at summer music festivals like Tanglewood where they could enjoy performances by the Boston Symphony Orchestra, also visiting the Saratoga Performing Arts Center for performances by the Philadelphia Orchestra. Florence was a devoted supporter of the Albany Symphony and Capital Repertory Theatre.

The scholarship is given by her husband, Thomas, and her sons, Mark T. Freeman, an attorney and senior vice president at Key Bank in Cleveland, and Dr. Kevin W. Freeman, a research scientist at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn.

“Among many other things, Florence will be remembered as a great teacher, both professionally, but also of our sons, and as an organizer who had the outgoing personality that could transform strangers into friends,” Thomas said.

The Florence H. Freeman Honors Music Scholarship gives WVU’s College of Creative Arts a full suite of honors scholarships for students in each of its three schools. The Carl and Victoria Cather Dean’s Honor Scholarship is presented to an Honors College student in the School of Art and Design, and the Jim and Judy Culberson Dean’s Honors Scholarship benefits an Honors College student in the School of Theatre and Dance.

“We are so grateful and appreciative to the Freeman family for establishing the Florence H. Freeman Honors Music Scholarship,” said College of Creative Arts Dean Paul K. Kreider. “This scholarship will help attract highly motivated, highly qualified students to the College of Creative Arts and the School of Music. And we’re so pleased to have an honors scholarship in music that complements those in the rest of the college.”

“The Honors College is a proud supporter of the College of Creative Arts, and I am thrilled to have this opportunity to recognize Honors scholars for their outstanding abilities in music, art and theatre,” said Honors College Dean Kenneth Blemings. “I look forward to seeing these young scholars pursue and reach their dreams.”

The scholarship was created in conjunction with A State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University. The $1 billion comprehensive campaign being conducted by the WVU Foundation on behalf of the University runs through December 2016.



CONTACT: David Welsh, WVU College of Creative Arts
304.293.3397, David.Welsh@mail.wvu.edu

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