Background on John D. Hopkins

Background on John D. Hopkins

Tampere University Tenure and Activity
International Education ActivityInternational Conference Organization
Workshops and SeminarsActivities Family Westminster Award
Selected PublicationsResearchContact Information


Tampere University Tenure and Activity

John D. Hopkins is Emeritus Senior Lecturer in American Language and Culture (tenured 1973) in the English Translation and Interpreting (ETI) Degree Programme (previously the Department of Translation Studies) of the School of Language, Literature, and Translation Studies of the University of Tampere, Finland. He retired in August 2014 at the completion of a 40-year career.

During his tenure, Hopkins held numerous administrative positions in addition to his teaching responsibilities. He was Chair of the English Division of the Department of Translation Studies from 1982 to 1986, and co-founder, Coordinator and conference organizer of the Tampere American Studies Program from 1984 until 1991. In 1993 he founded the FAST Area Studies Program (see also A Model Program ...), which he administered until its conclusion in 2012.

In addition to his core American Studies teaching and research, Hopkins was known for his expertise in curriculum development and courses in Academic and Professional Writing; Academic Citation and Documentation; and Digital Literacy and Academic Knowledge Management.

Hopkins also worked extensively with international educational exchange administration, development and marketing, and telematics in higher education, and published widely in these fields. All these activities were also central to his teaching and research at the University of Tampere.

Hopkins served as Board Member of FUSEEC, the Finland-United States Educational Exchange Commission (bi-national Fulbright Commission, now known as the Fulbright Center), from 1978-1990, and as Executive Consultant to the FUSEEC Board. He introduced the International Student Exchange (ISEP) Program to Finland in 1982, when Tampere University became the first ISEP member in the Nordic region. From 1982-1987, under Rector Jarmo Visakorpi, he helped to establish International Education Services at Tampere University and in other Finnish universities.

International Education Activity Outside Finland

Hopkins also served extensively in international education leadership outside Finland. He began work with the U.S.-based NAFSA: Association of International Educators in 1982, when Tampere University became the first Finnish member of NAFSA. Hopkins served on NAFSA's MicroSIG (microcomputing special interest group) Steering Committee from its inception in 1985 until 1996, and was MicroSIG Chair from 1990-1993. He also served on NAFSA's Communications and Information Policy Committee from 1991-1995, and was elected to a three-year term on NAFSA's Board of Directors in 1993, becoming the first person residing outside the U.S. to be elected to the Board. He also served on ISEP's Advisory Board from 1990-1994, and was Board Chair from 1992-1994.

In Europe, Hopkins was a founding member of the European Association For International Education, and charter member of its Electronic Networks and Information Sharing Committee, of which he served as Chair from 1996-2000.He was a frequent presenter and Chair of workshops and sessions at EAIE Annual Conferences, and spoke at conferences and workshops and consulted on international education administration, development and marketing in Denmark, Croatia, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Romania, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, and the United Kingdom, as well as the United States.

International education activities also included the founding and administration of the NEXUS [formerly OSEAS] Database (1988-96), a research and administrative tool for over 1000 IE administrators in 132 countries outside the U.S. whose work involved academic exchange with the United States, and the International Education Forum website (1993-97) and OSEAS-World integrated e-mail system which served these administrators.

Publications and Speeches

Hopkins has written and been published in American Studies, International Education, and the deployment of Interactive Communications Technologies (ICT) in higher education. Book-length publications include American Institutions (Gummerus, 1975), and Dimensions in American Studies (Ed., Tampere University Press, 1986). He was also contributing author for the American English and U.S. cultural content of WSOY Publishers' New Deal Senior Secondary English Series. In addition to presentations published in conference reports, numerous articles and speeches have been published by SITRA: The [Finnish] National Fund for Research and Development, the Newsletter of the European Association for International Education and other EAIE publications, the NAFSA Newsletter and its International Educator magazine, the Advising Quarterly (AMIDEAST, Washington, D.C.), and World Education News and Reviews (published by World Education Services in New York), for which he was a Contributing Editor.

He has also been a plenary speaker at numerous international conferences on International Education and the deployment of information technologies in higher education. He presented the keynote addresses to the Launching Conference of the EU Ortelius Database of European Higher Education, the 49th Annual Conference of the Council for International Educational Exchange, and the third and fourth European Educational Advising Conferences, among others.

International Conference Organization

John has organized numerous international conferences, including the 1st Nordic Conference on American Studies at the Secondary Level in Hanasaari, Finland, 1983; the U.S. Educational Foundation [USEF] 35th Anniversary Conference in Tampere, 1983; the 1st Tampere American Studies Conference in 1985; and the Fulbright 40th Anniversary Conference and Second Tampere American Studies Conference in 1987. He was also primary organizer of the 1991 and 1995 European Educational Advising Conferences in La Grande Motte (France) and Athens (Greece), respectively; and the 1992 ISEP Biennial Conference in Budapest, Hungary.

Workshops and Seminars

Outreach activities have included workshops in American English in Finland and Sweden; in American Education, Mass Communications, Popular Culture, Government and Politics, and intercultural communications and telematic networking for FilmNet, Canal+ and Finnish Broadcasting Corporation translators and subtitlers; the Association of Teachers of English in Finland; and various other educational and civic organizations.

Extracurricular Activities and Interests

Hopkins' extracurricular interests include recreational sports and music, as well as photography, hiking, bicycling, gardening, reading, cooking, and historical research. He is a six-time Finlandia Ski Marathon (75 kilometers) medalist, and has played college and semi-pro baseball. He plays trumpet in Sivuääni: the Medical Orchestra of Tampere, Finland, and continues professional work in proofreading, editing, and writing via Hopkins Consulting.

In recent years John's historical writing has been published in the journal of the Boonslick Historical Society, and his musical writing in Puhallinorkesteri, the journal of the Finnish Wind Band Association; WASBE-World, journal of the World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles; and by the Chatfield Music Lending Library and Archive.


John Hopkins is married to Maritta Hopkins, Lecturer in English and former Acting Director in the Tampere University Language Center until her retirement in August 2016. John and Maritta have two children, Brian Hopkins, Chief Operating Officer at Analyste Oy, and Christina Hopkins Poulsen, Head of Employee Engagement at Metso Oy. There are four grandchildren via Brian and Christina: Sharon, Daniel, Isabella, and Victoria. John's younger brother, the composer and poet Robert Hopkins, pianist and principal accompanist for the Lahti Music Conservatory (AMK) until his retirement in 2016, also lives in Finland.

Other family members included the late Dr. William T. Hopkins, Emeritus Professor of Piano and Music History, San Francisco State University; the late Lt. Colonel Woodard B. Hopkins, Jr.; and the late Sara Hopkins Beene, Emeritus Speech/Language Pathologist (SLP), Témpe, Arizona.

John is a native of Boonville, Missouri, a 1964 graduate of Boonville High School and 1969 graduate of Westminster College. In April 2001 he was honored with Westminster's Alumni Achievement Award, the highest distinction the college can give its graduates, for career accomplishment in international education, American Studies, and ICT innovation in European higher education.

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Contact Information:
John D. Hopkins
Lielahdenkatu 40 E 19
33410 Tampere, Finland

Last Updated 02 March 2024