Students in field

Campus meets community: The grand opening of Hirvonen Hall

July 26, 2022
Hirvonen Open House Grand Opening

Mike Lahti cuts the ribbon at the grand opening of Hirvonen Hall.

On Saturday, July 23, dozens of Hancock Central High School alumni gathered on the steps of Hirvonen Hall for an all-class photo at the building’s grand reopening ceremony. The former Hancock Public Schools building now serves as the proud home of Finlandia’s professionally accredited health sciences offerings.

Following the class photo, Finlandia President Tim Pinnow greeted those in attendance:

“On behalf of Finlandia University, welcome home. We hope you like what we’ve done with the place.”

President Pinnow recognized Board of Trustees member Mike Lahti, who owns the fourth floor, for his time, gifts and efforts in making Hirvonen Hall a reality for FinnU students. Pinnow also recognized Linda and Mark Hirvonen for their family’s extraordinary legacy of leadership and generosity. Their father, Ray, who passed away in December 2021, donated over one and a half million dollars to Finlandia in his lifetime. Hirvonen Hall and the Ray & Peg Hirvonen College of Health Sciences have been named in honor of the family’s legacy.

Hirvonen Family Finlandia University

Michael Allkins, Linda Hirvonen, President Tim Pinnow, Dr. Fredi de Yampert, Mark Hirvonen and Kathy Hirvonen stand for a photograph in Hirvonen Hall Auditorium.

After the ceremony, patrons were asked to gather in the building’s auditorium for a brief welcome and introduction from Dr. Fredi de Yampert, Dean of Finlandia’s College of Health Sciences. An open house followed, where patrons were invited to tour the facility at their leisure.

Co-chairs of the 2022 HCH All-School Reunion Committee, Sara Niemeyer and Julie Lang, worked closely with the university to bring this vision to life.

“On behalf of my Co-Chair Julie Lang and the entire HCH All-School Reunion Committee, thank you to Finlandia University for the opportunity to tour Hirvonen Hall this past weekend,” Niemeyer said. “For HCH alumni, it was both a walk down memory lane and a glimpse of the bright future of the building that means so much to many of us. Thanks to all the alumni who attended this unique event.”

Hirvonen Hancock Alumni Class Photo

Hancock Central High School alumni gather for a group photo in part of the 2022 HCH All-School Reunion weekend.

Other areas within the newly renovated building provide additional recreational and performance spaces for Copper Country residents and organizations, including the auditorium and gymnasium. Close collaboration with the City of Hancock has resulted in robust community-building activities hosted on the grassy hillside and lawn known as Quincy Green.

Hirvonen Hall, McAfee field and the Hancock Promise comprise the three anchor components of a multi-year partnership established with the City of Hancock in 2009. The Hancock Promise allows Hancock Central High School graduates to attend FinnU at a tuition cost of up to only $2,500 per school year. In 2020, a seven-year extension was announced for the Hancock Promise.

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