LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Ed McBroom and State Rep. Greg Markkanen on Friday said they are saddened by the announcement by Finlandia University’s Board of Trustees that the school will close its doors and not enroll any students for the 2023-2024 academic year.
“Finlandia University has been opening up new opportunities for students and helping improve lives in the Upper Peninsula for over a century — and it is truly sad to hear that their long legacy of contributions will be coming to an end,” said McBroom, R-Waucedah Township. “I feel for the many students and staff and their families, yet I am also encouraged by the support of many universities who have already stepped up to ensure the Finlandia students can finish their education.”
Markkanen and his wife, Jane, are alumni of Suomi College, the former name of Finlandia, and live in Hancock, where the university is located.
“I am shocked and deeply saddened that Finlandia University — the school I love and that played such an important part of my life and in shaping the person I have become — will no longer be helping foster the talents of future students,” said Markkanen, R-Hancock. “It is good to hear that current students will have opportunities to finish their education at other schools, but losing an over 120-years-old institution is a huge loss for our community and the entire Upper Peninsula.”
The lawmakers said there are state resources available for impacted students and staff, such as numerous links to support from job training to housing at the state’s Helping Hand site at www.michigan.gov/helpinghand.
Finlandia University said they are focusing on making sure their current students will be able to transfer credits and complete their education and the school has finalized Teach-Out Agreements with Michigan Technological University, Bay College, Adrian College, and Wartburg College and is working on an agreement with Northern Michigan University.
Anyone impacted by the closure and who needs help navigating state government can contact the lawmakers’ office at 517-373-7840 or [email protected] for McBroom or 517-373-0850 or [email protected] for Markkanen.