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Mr. Kenny says Goodbye to Malvern after 43 years

See this story at malvernprep.org

With only one year less than Mr. Hornsleth, Mr. Kenny is Malvern’s 2nd longest running employee of 43 years and 12+ positions.

Mr. Kenny / M. Lanetti
Mr. Kenny / M. Lanetti

Mr. Fran Kenny has had many different jobs in his 43 years at Malvern. Sadly, this year is his last as he says goodbye not only to counseling and his many other positions, but also to the friends he has made here.

Mr. Kenny started his time at Malvern in 1971 when he was interviewed for a job after serving as a Military Policeman in the Vietnam War. Malvern was very different back then, and Mr. Kenny has been pleased with the changes he has seen.

“Well for one, the facilities have greatly improved. Not only that, but the size too. When I started, we had 225 students and 25 faculty,” said Kenny. The size and layout of Malvern’s campus has changed over the years, and many buildings that existed in the 70s have different functions now. “The cafeteria used to be in Sullivan Hall, and Stewart Hall served as a student union and gym.”

Mr. Kenny, who has held many different positions and jobs at Malvern, has a unique perspective that few other faculty members or students can share. “I was the Dean of Students for 8 years, I drove a school van, I’ve coached rifle, golf, tennis, baseball, and basketball…”

Here, I had to stop Mr. Kenny to learn more about Malvern’s abandoned rifle program. Before there were locker rooms in Dougherty Hall, there was a small rifle range in that area. Mr. Kenny, with his military experience, was the coach of the team, which was eventually ended in the 70s.

Mr. Kenny continued, “For 40 summers now I’ve worked on the grounds, I also ran summer programs for students who failed conduct.” In this program, students who had failed conduct had to work a total of 40 hours over the summer, an idea of Mr. Kenny’s.

Mr. Kenny served as Director of College Counseling for 30 years. His current position of counselor is what he is best known for from student perspective, but he is also known as the Test Center Coordinator for students who have already taken the SAT or an AP test.

What will Mr. Kenny miss most after his retirement?  “The friends I have made, both faculty and students,” said Kenny. After 43 years of service to Malvern, Mr. Kenny has grown close to the maintenance staff through his work on the grounds, as well as every student he has counseled. Four decades of Malvern grads and staff members have known him, and his impact on the community will last for generations.

 

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4 comments

  1. I myself recently retired after 38 years of teaching, and I remember Mr. Kenny as a dedicated disciplinarian and teacher. In my mind, he, John Wilwol, Paul Hornsleth, and Father Duffy were Malvern. Michael F. Kelly (75′).

  2. Mr. Kenny was the second person I met after Fr. Duffy. Along with Fr. Flynn they are who Malvern is and I thank him for his years of service to his students. He certainly straightened me out once or twice and I’m a much better person for it.
    Ken
    Class ’76

  3. For the past 43 years, my husband hasn’t had a job.
    He’s had Malvern.
    Not a workplace, an experience.
    A second home.
    He embraced it, engaged it and enhanced it with all the energy and vigor he had.
    He educated, counseled, mentored, disciplined, coached, chauffeured and beautified.
    He advised and encouraged as college counselor.
    He taught English, Spanish, Latin and French.
    He drove the van, no job was too insignificant.
    He rode the tractor, weeded, painted and polished in the summer. The aesthetics meant so much.
    He feels blessed to have worked for over four decades with so many dedicated, conscientious and decent men and women, holy and faith-filled Augustinians, in the classrooms, in the offices, in the maintenance department, in the dining hall.
    He is grateful to have witnessed the fine education afforded his three sons.
    His fidelity was demonstrated by his commitment not only in the classroom, but also on the sidelines, in the gym, and in the chapel for weekday Mass.
    He has never uttered an unkind word, has always taken the high road, and maintained a positive attitude, especially in the midst of the crisis of the seventies .
    For all his efforts, he never sought recognition, accolades or honor.
    A simple “thank you” from Frs. Duffy or Flynn or Jim Stewart was all the affirmation he needed.
    Malvern is a better place because he was a part of it.
    Malvern will never quite be the same without him.

    • I couldn’t agree more, Mr Kenny embodies what I came to know as Marlvern, he is a part of the DNA!! He was the very first person I came to know during my tenure and I still look back fondly at the summers that I worked there with him to pay my tuition. A very big “Thank you” from me as well!!

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