Johnson gives statement on final year at Finlandia

HANCOCK — Finlandia University President Philip Johnson released a statement Wednesday regarding his final year in office.

Johnson announced Monday he will be stepping down as university president at the end of the 2021-22 school year.

Johnson, who had been with the university since 2007 did not give a reason for stepping down. The decision comes months after Finlandia’s Faculty Council gave Johnson a vote of no confidence in June, citing reasons such as the decline in enrollment during his tenure.

Johnson declined to be interviewed for an article on his announcement.

Johnson’s statement is below:

“In this last year of my presidency, there is important work to be done. This work is my focus.

My priority for the coming months is to work with campus colleagues in ways that best position Finlandia for its new leadership. Our successes (more recently covered by The Daily Mining Gazette) in enrollment, facilities, and program launches offer positive momentum going into fall 2022 and beyond. I am hopeful that these positives will translate to more enduring growth.

Another priority for this year is to continue providing a safe living and learning environment for all students, faculty, and staff, as well as for our neighbors. COVID-19 and its variants continue to present a challenging and fluid situation. Finlandia believes that the best mitigation strategy available today is vaccinations. Our overall rate on campus is 72 percent. Our faculty continue to lead the way with 94 percent. Linking up with the Michigan National Guard and WUPHD, our nursing students recently sponsored an open-to-the-public vaccination and testing clinic.

Marking Finlandia’s 125th anniversary with a cluster of events occurring December 3rd-5th is another highlight that we are busy planning. All events are open to the public. Details can be found at finlandia.edu/125th.

I look forward to working with Finlandia’s Board of Trustees, faculty, and staff over the coming months.”


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