FREELAND, Mich. – Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association Commissioner Penny Allen-Cook announced today the addition of Finlandia University as an affiliate member to the conference for football, beginning with the 2018-19 academic year.
"We are excited to add Finlandia as a football affiliate member to the MIAA," said Allen-Cook. "We feel this addition is in line with the mission of the MIAA and our member schools, and will improve the collegiate experience of our student-athletes. We will continue to partner with the NACC (Northern Athletic Collegiate Conference) in our annual conference challenge series held the third weekend of the season."
The addition of Finlandia will give the MIAA eight institutions that sponsor football, including seven institutions that are part of the MIAA's current full membership: Adrian, Albion, Alma, Hope, Kalamazoo, Olivet, and Trine.
"This is a tremendous opportunity for the university and the football program," said Finlandia University Athletic Director Curtis Wittenberg. "The MIAA is not only the oldest college conference in America, but it is a prestigious conference with a strong football reputation. This affiliate membership will strengthen our young football program and proudly make it so all Michigan's NCAA Division III schools are competing in one conference."
Finlandia University is an NCAA Division III institution based in Hancock. The private, not-for-profit, liberal arts college has a student body of 500 students. Finlandia is a member of the multi-sport American Collegiate Athletic Association and competes independently in football.
The addition of Finlandia as an affiliate member is the first for the MIAA since 2007, when Wisconsin Lutheran was an affiliate for football only from 2002-07.