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Jim Johnson received the College President of the Year award from the Minnesota State College Student Association at its annual awards dinner April 12 in Breezy Point, Minnesota. (photo courtesy of Chris Dang)

Johnson heads in a new direction

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Jim Johnson’s first step into the world of higher education was a short one.

On his first day at a junior college in northern Illinois after sitting through a mandatory music appreciation class, he left and never returned.

Johnson went to work as a machinist and one summer day he saw a young kid in the shop get his hand caught in a press, crushing his fingers. Johnson realized that could have easily happened to him and it was that moment he decided to go back to school.

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