President Arvid C. Johnson, Ph.D.

A Message from Arvid:

A president’s homepage is an interesting – some might even say funny – place to end up when visiting a university’s website.

  • Maybe you’re a prospective student, wondering if the president is young, good-looking and cool. (No, no and only occasionally!)
  • Maybe you’re one of our 3,900 or so existing students, wondering what Arvid is up to of late. (The BEST place to find that is my Twitter feed.)
  • Maybe you’re one of our 49,000 alumni, wondering who’s running the place now that you’re gone. (Welcome back! Here is my biography and information about my inauguration in 2013– which included representatives from almost 50 alumni classes in the procession.)
  • Maybe you’re one of our partners or a prospective partner, looking to better understand USF. If so, check out my 2018 “State of the University” presentation and remarks from the most recent Ambassador Day on October 18, 2018. (For more history, you’re welcome to check out my 2017 “State of the University” presentation and remarks and my 2016 “State of the University” presentation and remarks as well!)


However you ended up here, WELCOME!

USF is a “welcoming community of learners challenged by Franciscan values and charism” that prepares “women and men to contribute to the world through service and leadership.” It says so in our mission statement – so it must be true! And… it is.

As I said in my inaugural address, the “USF Family” – our students, alumni, faculty, staff, and friends – are called to serve and, through service, called to lead. Service is a fundamental, integrating value of our Franciscan heritage because it is through service that we come to know Christ in each other – by recognizing the divine both in ourselves and in others and by putting others’ needs before our own. This is a service based in joy, not obligation.


Through service, the USF family is called to lead and love in the real world.

  • Our students are not only talented but also compassionate and committed to improving the lives of others through service and leadership.
  • Our faculty members are world-class teachers who make educating our students their No. 1 priority.
  • Our staff members work tirelessly to care for our students and to ensure their success.
  • Our alumni are not only the best at what they do – true leaders in their fields – but also recognize USF’s contribution to what they have accomplished.
  • And, our local community members – whether elected officials, businesses, faith communities, other organizations, or neighbors – are true partners in every sense of that word.


The USF family is clearly called to lead through service – and is having a positive impact upon those it serves.

No matter how you ended up on this page, I invite you to learn more about this special place – the University of St. Francis – and the incredible people who call it home. Explore the rest of the website, schedule a visit or drop me a note at You’ll be glad you did!

Best regards,