University Report 2015-16 | Students

Maguire Foundation Strengthens Catholic School Leadership

“I hope to use the tools I’ve gained at Saint Joseph’s to make a positive impact on my classroom, department and school community.” - Donald Holdren

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James J. '58 and Frances Maguire (center front), Amy Holdsman, Foundation Exec. Dir. (far left), and Megan Maguire Nicoletti, also of the Foundation (right of Mr. Maguire), with the first cohort of the Maguire Educational Leadership Fellows.

Saint Joseph’s welcomed its inaugural class of 20 Maguire Educational Leadership Fellows in the spring 2016 semester. The Maguire Foundation awarded the University’s Department of Educational Leadership $400,000 to establish the hybrid master’s degree/certification program, designed for future leaders who aspire to hold key positions in Catholic schools.

“Our goal is to strengthen leadership in the Catholic schools in the Greater Philadelphia area and offer students high-quality Catholic school options for their high school education,” says James J. Maguire ’58 (B.S.), co-founder of the foundation.

Grounded in Saint Joseph’s Ignatian heritage, the program seeks to cultivate knowledgeable, caring, reflective and socially conscientious educators who can think critically and advocate intentionally for all PK-12 students. “The Maguire Foundation’s generosity will have far-reaching effects on the achievement rate of students in Philadelphia’s Catholic high schools now and into the future,” says Associate Dean for Education John Vacca, Ph.D.

The first cohort will complete the 36-credit program in winter 2017. Graduates earn master’s degrees in educational leadership along with state principal certifications, and commit to staying at their schools for at least another three years after finishing the program.

Donald Holdren, chair of the fine arts department at Mount Saint Joseph Academy in Flourtown, Pennsylvania, is a Maguire Fellow.

“Catholic education is crucial because of its focus on the dignity and promise of every child,” he says. “I hope to use the tools I’ve gained at Saint Joseph’s to make a positive impact on my classroom, department and school community.”