The Most Popular Girl at MNU

Oct. 9, 2013 - by Katy Ward

The Most Popular Girl at MNU

By Konner McIntire
October 9, 2013
The Most Popular Girl at MNUStudents surprised Granny Franny with a birthday party at Olathe's Cracker Barrel.

Frances Wood is one of MNU’s newest students and she’s already become the most popular girl on campus. She’s not the norm. At 82, she is embracing all college has to offer.  

As soon as I sat down with her, four students interrupted our interview by extolling “Granny Franny,” and engaged her in deep conversation. This exchange was the forerunner to at least five more interruptions by faculty and students. No one can get enough of MNU’s most popular girl.

Wood hands students her homemade business cards, which state her name is “Granny Franny.” She asks the students to call her by this pet name and believes the nickname is one reason for her successful relationships with them. The cards also give students access to her phone number and email.

How did this unorthodox student find her way to MNU? This is not the Topeka resident’s first experience in college. Years ago, the Hiawatha, Kan., native attended Westmar College in Le Mars, Iowa, for three semesters. She married, had children and didn’t return to college until now.

When asked if she is working on a degree, Wood answered, “As the basketball people say, ‘one and done!’ I’m not here for a degree.”

Wood says she enrolled at MNU for a change of routine. Recently widowed, she was looking for a change of scenery and pace. She found just that and many new friends. The relationships Wood developed here have been a pleasant surprise.

The Most Popular Girl at MNUGranny Franny in personal finance class.“I pictured I would be here and just do my own little thing,” she says. “I didn’t think the kids would want to meet me.”

She could not have been more wrong. Anyone who engages Wood in conversation will learn she has many interesting qualities. Despite her age, she shows no signs of slowing down; she is quite adventuresome.

She and her late husband of 59 years traveled to every state in the U.S. She is the national legislation director for the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union. Wood’s involvement in WCTU has taken her all the way to Australia for an international convention,

She frequents the YMCA for workouts with ladies 20 years her junior, and for intense table tennis sessions. She is a devoted participant of the sport and competed in and won a table tennis tournament in the Senior Olympics this fall.

Once baffled by the sweet grandmother-of-six’s attendance in classes, the faculty and students now sing Wood’s praises.

“She asks very good questions in class and is really articulate,” says Dr. Mike Gough, business professor.

Wood has a diverse class schedule. She is taking Kansas and Midwest History, Johannine Literature, Federal Income Tax, and Personal Finance.

The students get to learn from her as she has plenty of stories and personal experience to share with classmates. Wood says she never imagined she would be back in the classroom setting.

The Most Popular Girl at MNUStudents are always around Granny Franny in the Campus Center.“Nothing could have prepared me for this. It was really a far-out idea. I think The Lord put this idea in my head because it came out of nowhere,” she explained.

Amanda Davis is a classmate.

“We just became best friends from our first encounter; she’s hilarious,” Davis says giggling.

Davis admires Wood, not only for her desire to get to know others on campus, but for the love she has already been showing to other students.

Frances Wood has been nothing but a joy and pleasant surprise to the community at MNU. Her experience and desire to learn have added an entirely new dynamic to her classmates’ education. Most importantly, Wood has demonstrated love to the students in a manner that is most uncommon. MNU’s campus may never be the same. 

 

MNU News

Friday, August 18
Recent News
List
Grid
Archives
JK Warrick photo credit JimSmith
Dr. JK Warrick to Serve at MNU as Special Counsel

Dr. JK Warrick to Serve at MNU as Special Counsel

Dr. J.K. Warrick has been appointed special counsel to the president for the 2017-18 academic year. President David Spittal, made the announcement…

Read More
CareerLife Calling
Expansion of Mentoring Program to Serve All Majors

Expansion of Mentoring Program to Serve All Majors

More career-focused opportunities for juniors at MNU will launch this fall with a newly expanded mentoring program. Built on the positive impact of…

Read More
Kassidy Chuning headshot resized
Alum Finds New Perspectives, New Growth

Alum Finds New Perspectives, New Growth

Kassidy (Ritchel ’14) Chuning worked hard and played hard.  During high school, she played basketball and volleyball while maintaining a coveted GPA. Strong family values were woven into the…

Read More
Aaron Tiffany w guitar
Business Major Answers the Call

Business Major Answers the Call

Aaron Tiffany (Business Administration, ’05) isn’t exactly where he thought he’d be after graduation from MNU. Or actually, he is. “Going in to college I didn't know what I wanted to…

Read More
Sunberg Named GS
Alum Named 43rd General Superintendent

Alum Named 43rd General Superintendent

MNU Alumnus, Dr. Carla (Johnson ’83) Sunberg, was elected the 43rd General Superintendent of the Church of the Nazarene June 27, at the denomination’s General Assembly in Indianapolis, Indiana.…

Read More
Jason Heidi Menard
Driven to Succeed: Alum Taps into Hard Work, Passion, and Energy

Driven to Succeed: Alum Taps into Hard Work, Passion, and Energy

Some people might say that alum Jason Menard, just 7 years out of MNU, is too young to be a high school assistant principal and athletic director.…

Read More
Stowe in China
MNU Professor Selected for Prestigious Fellowship

MNU Professor Selected for Prestigious Fellowship

The U.S. Department of State announced the selection of Ramona Stowe of MidAmerica Nazarene University (MNU) for a 10-month fellowship project…

Read More
PrayerWalk2016-74
Visit MNU Exhibit at GA2017

Visit MNU Exhibit at GA2017

If you’re attending The Church of the Nazarene General Assembly or any of the associated conventions June 21 to June 29, 2017, in Indianapolis, Indiana, be sure to stop by the MNU exhibits.…

Read More
mnugrad-004
MNU Mourns Passing of Former President Ed Robinson

MNU Mourns Passing of Former President Ed Robinson

Dr. Edwin H. Robinson, fourth president of MidAmerica Nazarene University, went home to be with the Lord on Saturday, May 27, 2017. Dr. Ed, as he was…

Read More
Sports
MNU Cross County and Track & Field Announce 2017 Signing Class

MNU Cross County and Track & Field Announce 2017 Signing Class

MNU Cross Country and Track & Field are prepped for another great season...

 
MNU Finishes Top-30 in Learfield Directors' Cup

MNU Finishes Top-30 in Learfield Directors' Cup

After a successful 2016-17 season which saw several Pioneer squads qualify for Nationals, MNU ranked 27th in the NAIA and 2nd in the Heart in the Directors' Cup...

 
Lindsay Smith Named Next MNU Cheerleading Coach

Lindsay Smith Named Next MNU Cheerleading Coach

OLATHE, Kan. - Director of Athletics Todd Garrett has announced Lindsay Smith as the next head coach of MNU Cheerleading.

 
Latest Photos
MNU Commencement 2017 Professional & Graduate Studies Commencement
MNU Commencement 2017 Professional & Graduate Studies Commencement
MNU Commencement 2017 Professional & Graduate Studies Commencement
MNU Commencement 2017 Professional & Graduate Studies Commencement
MNU Commencement 2017 Professional & Graduate Studies Commencement
MNU Commencement 2017 Professional & Graduate Studies Commencement