Collection ID: 2600127

Collection context


Niemi, John A.
Professional papers from the adult education scholar and teacher
7 linear ft.
Preferred citation:

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

John Niemi Papers, &su_name;


Scope and Content:

The John Niemi Papers includes a considerable amount of writing by Niemi, including course outlines, bibliographies, articles, papers, clippings, speeches, and presentations. Other material relates to topics relevant to Niemi's research and work, including volunteerism, cross-cultural communication, educational television, graduate programs at NIU and other colleges, and adult education in Finland, Russia and China. Three-quarters of one box relates to NIU's management of Clearinghouse ADELL, a central repository and disseminator of materials useful to educators of adults.

Biographical / Historical:

John Niemi (1933-2004) was born in Michigan to parents who emigrated to the United States from Finland. After graduating from Gogebic Community College in Ironwood, Michigan in 1952 and from Michigan State in 1954, he later earned a Master's Degree from the University of Alaska in Fairbanks and a Ph.D. from the University of California at Los Angeles (1967).

Niemi spent more than fifty years in the field of adult education, much of it at Northern Illinois University (NIU). His early experience teaching functionally illiterate Army enlistees in Alaska began a lifelong interest in adult education for military personnel, and led to a 25-year partnership between NIU and the Great Lakes Naval Training Center. In addition to his work at NIU, Niemi taught and conducted research at the University of Helsinki and other Finnish universities, and organized congresses that brought together American, Finnish, Russian, and Scandinavian adult educators. He wrote more than 150 articles and four books on adult literacy, mass media and adult education, and the use of technologies in the classroom.

He was a constant advocate for and inspiration to his students, and was recognized numerous times for his deep dedication to both the field of adult education and the individual students whom he encountered over his career. His honors include a Fulbright scholarship, an honorary doctorate from the University of Helsinki (1986), Distinguished Alumnus of the Year award from Gogebic Community College (1999), Distinguished Teaching Professor at NIU, Distinguished Teaching Alumnus at the University of California-Los Angeles, and Honorary Professor, Shanghai Second Institute. In 2001 he was named a Commander of the Order of the Lion of Finland by the Republic of Finland. NIU's John A. Niemi Memorial Scholarship is named in his honor.

Acquisition information:
Gift of John Niemi .

The collection remains in original order and in original folders. The inventory below is a box list; folder titles are those supplied.



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Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

John Niemi Papers, &su_name;

Special Collections Research Center
Syracuse University Libraries
Bird Library, Room 600
Syracuse, NY 13244, United States