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The Gwynedd Mercy University community mourns the loss of outstanding alumna, beloved benefactor, and loving wife, mother, and grandmother Frances M. Maguire ‘55, who passed away on February 12, 2020.
Frances, more commonly known as "Frannie," is the namesake of the Frances M. Maguire School of Nursing and Health Professions and the Frances M. Maguire Hall. She has made a profound impact on generations of GMercyU nursing students.
“Frannie Maguire’s legacy will live forever at Gwynedd Mercy University,” said GMercyU President Deanne H. D’Emilio, JD. “Her genuine interest in and care for our students and commitment to helping them succeed serves as a model for how to Make Mercy Real. She will be greatly missed but forever remembered.”
Frannie was always drawn to health care. Her father was a prominent surgeon and her mother was a nurse. Inspired and encouraged by her parents, Frannie enrolled in the Medical Secretary Degree Program at the then Gwynedd-Mercy College and graduated in 1955. She later returned to study nursing in the mid-1970s.
Along with her husband James J. Maguire, she has demonstrated a deep commitment to our University. The Maguires’ contributions have paved the way for generations of GMercyU students to achieve great success. To give back to her alma mater, Frannie endowed the School of Nursing and Health Professions, and the couple has funded numerous scholarships, faculty support, and state-of-the-art technology and facilities.
“The Frances M. Maguire School of Nursing and Health Professions is forever appreciative of the Maguire family’s generosity, support, and commitment to GMercyU and our students,” said Ann Phalen, PhD, CRNP, NNP-BC, GMercyU’s Dean of the Frances M. Maguire School of Nursing and Health Professions.
In 2000, Frannie and Jim also founded the Maguire Foundation, which became their platform for instituting and inspiring positive change in the local community. By investing their efforts in providing access to education in nursing, health care, and the arts and humanities, Frannie was committed to improving the quality of life of people.
As part of her work through the Maguire Foundation, the Maguire Scholars program was created to offer students an opportunity for an excellent education. By supporting and encouraging Maguire Scholars, Frannie touched the lives of countless students and has given them the support needed to chase their dreams.
“Being a Maguire Scholar is a gift that meant the world to me,” said Aubrey Cook ‘18, a recent GMercyU nursing graduate and former Maguire Scholar. “This foundation has given not only me, but many other students from grade school all the way through college, the dream to be the adult and professional they have always aspired to be. Because they believed in me, I am successful.”
Thanks to Frannie and the Maguire Foundation, Aubrey was able to pursue her passion and is currently making a difference as a registered nurse in the Intermediate Coronary Care Unit at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Center City, Philadelphia.
Aubrey is just one of the thousands of students who have benefited from the Maguires’ generosity. Through the Maguire Foundation, Frannie has supported a broad range of educational efforts throughout the region and was one of the most respected humanitarians in the Philadelphia area. She has impacted thousands of individuals by giving selflessly and showing tender courage.
In life, Frannie embraced the Mercy mission, and her legacy of kindness will continue to impact our community and beyond for many, many years to come.