Lakehead welcomes international scholar as endowed Chair in Finnish Studies

May 17, 2024 – Thunder Bay, Ont.

Dr. Jarmo PeltolaLakehead University is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Jarmo Peltola as the next endowed Chair in Finnish Studies.

An associate professor and senior researcher in economic and social history at the University of Helsinki, Dr. Peltola is the 12th Finnish scholar to hold this position. He will hold the position from September 2024 until the end of April 2025. In addition to providing lectures at the undergraduate level and conducting research, he will participate in the intellectual life of the university and the Finnish community and explore the development of partnerships.

“This opportunity offers me a trip to my own past,” said Dr. Peltola. “Many of my relatives left for “America" at the beginning of the twentieth century. Some of them settled in the Great Lakes region. This visiting professorship allows me to explore this past and will provide me with an excellent opportunity to complete my research database, which I have collected from the population of the industrial city of Tampere.

“Many workers from Tampere ended up going to Canada and the United States between 1900 and 1940. The reason for leaving was sometimes the desire for adventure, but very often the pursuit of a better standard of living. Political reasons also often influenced the departure.”

Prior to joining the University of Helsinki, Dr. Peltola spent 13 years as a senior researcher at the University of Tampere. He has also been a visiting researcher at Umeå University and Uppsala University in Sweden and at the International Institute of Social History. Dr. Peltola’s publications include 18 monographs and 36 articles/book chapters exploring a wide range of Finnish economic, labour, and social history.

"The Department of History is pleased to host Dr. Peltola,” said department chair Dr. Michael Stevenson. “His distinguished interdisciplinary research record on the economic, political, and social history of Finland, as well as the history of the Finnish diaspora in North America will be of great interest to Lakehead students and the general public in the Thunder Bay region.”

“Dr. Peltola’s appointment is another example of the university’s close relationship with the Finnish communities in Thunder Bay, across Canada, and overseas,” added Dr. Michel S. Beaulieu, Associate Vice Provost (Academic).

Established in 1996, the Chair in Finnish Studies is an endowed appointment at the Thunder Bay campus created and sustained by the generous support of the Finnish community of Thunder Bay and its organizations, particularly the Canadian Suomi Foundation.

More information about the Chair in Finnish Studies can be found at