Canisius University /kəˈnʃəs/ is a private Jesuit university in Buffalo, New York. It was founded in 1870 by Jesuits from Germany and is named after St. Peter Canisius. Canisius offers more than 100 undergraduate majors and minors, and around 34 master's and certificate programs.

Canisius University
Former name
Canisius College (1870–2023)
TypePrivate university
Established1870; 153 years ago (1870)
Religious affiliation
Roman Catholic (Jesuit)
Academic affiliations
Endowment$170 million (2022)[1]
PresidentSteve Stoute
Academic staff
283 (122 full-time/161 part-time)[2]
Location, ,
United States
CampusUrban, 72 acres (29.1 ha)
Colors   Blue & gold[4]
NicknameGolden Griffins
Sporting affiliations
NCAA Division I - MAAC AHA
MascotPetey the Griffin
The campus
The campus

History edit

Canisius has its roots in the Jesuit community that arose from disputed ownership of St. Louis Church in Buffalo in 1851.[5][6] Rev. Lucas Caveng, a German Jesuit, along with 19 families from St. Louis Church, founded St. Michael's Church on Washington St.[6] The college followed, primarily for serving sons of German immigrants, along with the high school in 1870, first at 434 Ellicott St. and next to St. Michael's.[7] In 1913 construction of the Old Main building at 2001 Main St. was completed.[8] The early presidents of the college were German Jesuits.[9]

During the COVID-19 pandemic in July 2020, President John Hurley and the board of trustees made a decision to lay off a number of tenured faculty, including those in Classics, Chemistry, English, History, Management, Religious Studies and Philosophy. Several majors were eliminated, including Classics, Entrepreneurship, European studies, Fine Arts, Human Services, International Business, Physics, Religious Studies and Urban Studies.[10][11] Some college faculty, students and members of the community have contested the decision, including two formal votes of no confidence by the college's faculty senate.[12][13][14] The move also attracted criticism from numerous academic organizations, including the American Historical Association and the Association for Slavic, East European and Eurasian Studies[15][16] After an almost yearlong investigation, the American Association of University Professors released a report on eight institutions, including Canisius College, that found that "some institutional leaders seem to have taken the COVID-19 crisis as an opportunity to turbocharge the corporate model that has been spreading in higher education over the past few decades, allowing them to close programs and lay off faculty members as expeditiously as if colleges and universities were businesses whose CEOs suddenly decided to stop making widgets or shut down the steelworks".[17][18] The AAUP recommended that Canisius College be added to its list of sanctioned institutions due to "substantial noncompliance with standards of academic government".[19] Several affected tenured faculty members also sued the college for violation of contract.[20]

In 2015 Canisius College was one of more than 90 colleges investigated by the Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights for its handling of sexual assault and harassment complaints.[21] In 2021, three former female student athletes filed a federal lawsuit in the Western District of New York alleging a hostile environment and that the college "failed to take appropriate action in response to these reports and complaints of sexual harassment, abuse and sexual assault".[22][23] In a separate federal lawsuit filed in 2022, five former female students alleged that Canisius College ignored sexual misconduct complaints against Professor Michael Noonan and allowed him to retire in 2019 rather than pursuing Title XI complaints against him.[24] On June 27, 2022, a judge allowed the former athletes’ case to proceed, describing the college’s delayed response to assault allegations as “inexplicable.” [25]

In 2021, John Hurley announced he was retiring as president of the college. After a months-long search, Steve Stoute was announced as the next president of Canisius.[26]

On April 27, 2023, Canisius announced that it had successfully petitioned the New York State Education Department (NYSED) Board of Regents for university designation.[27] It officially changed its name to Canisius University on August 1, 2023.

Campus edit

Christ the King Chapel edit

Christ the King Chapel, designed by Buffalo architect Duane Lyman,[28] is centrally located to "symbolize its importance".[29] It was completed in 1951 and has seating for 492.[28]

Science Hall edit

Science Hall was built as a Sears and Roebuck store in 1929.[30] The college has allocated $68 million for its renovation, over $35 million of which has been raised[31] with help from the John R. Oishei Foundation.[32]

Science Hall Parking Ramp edit

Public Safety Booth
Carpool section of ramp

The parking ramp originally served the Sears and Roebuck building at 1901 Main St. However, throughout the history of ramp, Canisius students have used it for parking, with Sears advertising in The Griffin student newspaper that parking was free.[33][34] Acquisition of the property has eliminated parking problems.[35] The ramp was demolished in 2022. A new green space surface lot is planned to replace it.[36]

Churchill Academic Tower edit

The 11-story Churchill Academic Tower was built in 1971, designed by Leroy H. Welch.[37] It is named for its chief benefactor, Rev. Clinton H. Churchill and his wife Francis.[38] The Tower is routinely derided but serves as a highly functional space.[37]

Andrew L. Bouwhuis Library edit

Built in 1957 and upgraded in 1988[39] and from 2013 through 2015,[40] Andrew L. Bouwhuis Library, named for Andrew L. Bouwhuis, S.J., college librarian from 1935 to 1955, furnishes extensive area for study and research.[41] It seats 500 people[42] and includes group study rooms, an audio-visual listening/viewing area, a rare book room, an instruction room, a Curriculum Materials Center and a lounge,[43] along with private study rooms accommodating one to eight people.

The Koessler Athletic Center edit

Koessler Athletic Center

Located at 1833 Main Street in Buffalo, the Koessler Athletic Center is named after J. Walter Koessler, class of 1922.[44] The facility has a swimming pool, two weight rooms, two gymnasiums and locker rooms and offices for athletic coaches and support staff.[45]

Academics edit

Canisius offers more than 100 majors, minors and special programs. The college is accredited by the Middle States Association Commission on Higher Education, the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education and the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. In fall 2009, Canisius College introduced a new major in Animal Behavior, Ecology, and Conservation.[46] Other new majors include Creative Writing,[47] Health and Wellness, and Journalism.[48] With the George E. Schreiner '43, MD, Pre-Medical Center as an asset,[49] the college caters strongly to the biological and health science fields and holds close relationships with both the University at Buffalo School of Medicine and the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Rankings edit

Canisius earned the 21st spot in the top tier of U.S. News & World Report's 2022 rankings of America's Best Regional Universities – North.[50] U.S. News also ranked Canisius thirteenth in the 2016 "Great Schools, Great Prices" listing among regional universities in the North.[51] Canisius earned the eighth spot among 49 regional universities in the North in U.S. News' Best Colleges for Veterans Ranking, as well as #4 in Best Value Schools and #26 in Top Performers on Social Mobility, for 2022.[50] Canisius College alumni ranked first (1st), overall, in New York State on the 2014 CPA exam cycle, with a 75 percent pass rate, in the category of medium programs.[52]

Student life edit

Canisius has on campus about 90 clubs and organizations, vetted by the Undergraduate Student Association and its senators. Program offerings include the Best of Buffalo series, Fusion game nights, the Fall Semi-Formal, the Canisius Royals competition, the Mass of the Holy Spirit with Fall BBQ and Bonfire, Griffin Week, and Griff Fest (formerly "Quad Party" & "Springfest").[53][54] With a growing student population in its colleges, Buffalo has begun offering free Canal-side concerts, along with "Shakespeare in the Park", the Polish Broadway Market, Silo City "Boom Days" (on Buffalo's industrial history), and Dyngus Day.

Athletics edit

The college sponsors 20 NCAA Division 1 Athletic teams and is a member of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) as well as the Atlantic Hockey Conference.[55] Men's sports include baseball, ice hockey, and golf. Women's sports include volleyball and softball. The Golden Griffins compete in the NCAA Division I and are members of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) for most sports, except for men's ice hockey which competes in the Atlantic Hockey Association. In 2013, the men's ice hockey team won its first Atlantic Hockey Championship, earning a bid to the NCAA Tournament.[citation needed] In 2008, Canisius men's lacrosse won the MAAC tournament and earned its first bid to the NCAA Men's Lacrosse Championship tournament.[56]

The Women's Lacrosse team won MAAC Championships four years in a row (2010-2014). The 2008 Baseball team won its first regular season MAAC championship, with a 41–13 season, and the following year made its first appearance in the MAAC Championship game.[57] In 2013, the team won the MAAC Championship and received its first bid to the NCAA tournament. The Canisius College softball team won the 2009 Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference tournament for its 3rd consecutive title, marking the team's 11th trip to the NCAA tournament in 15 years.[58] In its rivalry with Niagara University Canisius won the Canal Cup two of the first three years (2008 and 2009).[59] Intramural sports are also offered for students, faculty, and staff.

Canisius' mascot is the Golden Griffin. The college adopted the Griffin as a mascot in 1932, after Charles A. Brady ('33) wrote a story in a Canisius publication honoring Buffalo's centennial year as a city. Brady wrote about Jesuit-educated explorer Rene-Robert LaSalle's Le Griffon, which was built in Buffalo. The Griffin was first used on the La Salle medal in 1932 and from there spread to the college newspaper, The Griffin, and sports teams.[60][61][62][63] According to, the griffin is a "legendary creature with the body, tail, and back legs of a lion; the head and wings of an eagle; and an eagle's talons as its front feet." It represents values such as courage, boldness, intelligence, and strength befitting students and athletes alike.

The college was also the first home field of the Buffalo All-Americans of the early National Football League. Around 1917 Buffalo manager Barney Lepper signed a lease for the team to play their home games at Canisius College. The All-Americans played games at Canisius before relocating to Bison Stadium in 1924.[citation needed]

Greek life edit

Canisius College's fraternities and sororities are overseen by the Canisius College Office of Student Life. The three college-approved Greek organizations on campus are the Lambda chapter of the fraternity Sigma Phi Epsilon (SigEp), the sorority Phi Sigma Sigma, and the professional organization Alpha Kappa Psi (AK Psi).[64] Also there is a Classics Club which fosters interest in the study of ancient Greek and Roman history, language, and culture; it hosts events like readings and discussions of ancient texts, Saturnalia, and alcohol-free toga parties. The club fosters the Jesuit value of a Classical education, as well as cura personalis.[65]

Media edit

The student weekly newspaper is The Griffin, which replaced The Canisian in 1933 and continues to print weekly.[66] The annual Quadrangle magazine contains student writings, artwork, and photographs. Public-access television cable TV broadcasts to Canisius College from its fourth floor studio at Lyons Hall. The WIRE, replacing WCCG, is the college's radio station, which broadcasts over the campus television system and is online through the college website.[67]

ROTC edit

Canisius College is the Reserve Officer Training Corps hub for Western New York. The Golden Griffin Battalion is composed of students from Canisius, University at Buffalo (UB), Hilbert College, D'Youville College, Daemen College, Medaille College, Buffalo State College, and Erie Community College.

Public safety edit

Canisius College Public Safety[68] Officers are sworn Peace Officers pursuant to New York State Criminal Procedure Law section 2.10-72[69] and perform many of the same duties as any traditional Police Department. Each Officer receives law enforcement training which meets or exceeds the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services requirements for Peace Officers and they are authorized to carry firearms. Officers are authorized to enforce all Federal, State, and Local laws, as well as the rules and regulations of the college, and they do make arrests. Officers also perform a wide range of other duties which include: vehicular and foot patrol, criminal investigation, dispatch, welfare checks, first-aid and CPR, motorist assistance, and escorts.

Notable alumni edit

Canisius has approximately 40,000 living alumni worldwide who are working in the fields of business, journalism, government, law, medicine, and sports.

Academia edit

  • James Demske, S.J. (Class of 1947), President of Canisius College (1966–1993)[70]
  • Steven Seegel, Ph.D. (Class of 1999) - Professor of Slavic and Eurasian Studies at University of Texas at Austin[71]

Business edit

Journalism and television edit

Government and law edit

  • John Thomas Curtin (Class of 1946), former US Attorney and Federal Judge for the Western District of New York
  • Charles S. Desmond (Class of 1917), former Chief Judge of the New York Court of Appeals*
  • John J. LaFalce (Class of 1961), former US Representative for New York
  • Walter J. Mahoney (Class of 1930), former Majority Leader of the New York State Senate and New York Supreme Court Judge*
  • Salvatore R. Martoche (Class of 1962), New York State Supreme Court Justice and former Assistant Secretary of the United States Treasury and Labor Departments
  • Anthony M. Masiello (Class of 1969), former Mayor of Buffalo, New York
  • Richard D. McCarthy (Class of 1950), former US Representative for New York*
  • James T. Molloy (Class of 1958), former Doorkeeper, US House of Representatives*
  • Henry J. Nowak (Class of 1957), former US Representative for New York
  • Denise O'Donnell (Class of 1968), former US Attorney for the Western District of New York
  • William Paxon (Class of 1977), former US Representative for New York
  • William M. Skretny (Class of 1966), Federal Judge for the Western District of New York
  • Lawrence J. Vilardo (Class of 1977), Federal Judge for the Western District of New York
  • Frank A. Sedita (Class of 1930), former Mayor of Buffalo, New York*

Medicine and science edit

  • Donald Pinkel (Class of 1947), pediatric cancer researcher; former Director of the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

Psychology edit

Sports edit

Other edit

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ "President John Hurley on his legacy, Canisius's future". April 29, 2022.
  2. ^ "Office of Institutional Research and Effectiveness". August 5, 2016.
  3. ^ a b c "Enrollment at a Glance" (PDF). Retrieved November 19, 2021.
  4. ^ "Canisius College Style Guide 2014". June 16, 2014. Retrieved August 18, 2017.
  5. ^ "St. Michaels' RC Church". Retrieved August 18, 2017.
  6. ^ a b "ST. MICHAEL'S CHURCH, JESUITS' ORIGINAL BASE; IN AREA, TO MARK 150TH YEAR WITH MASS." Buffalo News (New York). (September 29, 2001 Saturday, FINAL EDITION ): 863 words. LexisNexis Academic. Web. Date Accessed: 2016/05/03.
  7. ^ "MASS TO MARK 125TH YEAR OF CANISIUS COLLEGE, HIGH." Buffalo News (New York). (September 16, 1994, Friday, City Edition ): 240 words. LexisNexis Academic. Web. Date Accessed: 2016/05/03.
  8. ^ "BRAND NEW OLD MAIN TO MAKE ITS DEBUT." Buffalo News (New York). (November 9, 2001 Friday, FINAL EDITION ): 390 words. LexisNexis Academic. Web. Date Accessed: 2016/05/03.
  9. ^ "Loss of Jesuit leadership could mark an ending." Buffalo News (New York). (November 1, 2009 Sunday ): 510 words. LexisNexis Academic. Web. Date Accessed: 2016/05/03.
  10. ^ "COVID roundup: Colleges revert to virtual fall, Canisius and Carthage plan faculty layoffs". July 21, 2020. Retrieved July 23, 2020.
  11. ^ Reporter, Thomas J. Prohaska News Staff (July 20, 2020). "Canisius College, citing $20 million deficit, lays off 96 employees". The Buffalo News.
  12. ^ Anstey, Evan (July 23, 2020). "Canisius College President, Board of Trustees receive "no confidence" vote". WIVB. Retrieved July 25, 2020.
  13. ^ "A majority of Canisius faculty has voted "no confidence" in President John Hurley in a faculty-wide vote conducted by the faculty senate". Twitter. Retrieved May 13, 2022.
  14. ^ "Opposition mounting against planned layoffs & cuts at Canisius College". WKBW. July 23, 2020.
  15. ^ "AHA Condemns Tenured Faculty Layoffs at Canisius (July 2020) | AHA". Retrieved May 13, 2022.
  16. ^ "ASEEES Statement of Concern Regarding Firing of Faculty without Due Process and Loss of Programs". ACADEME BLOG. September 28, 2020. Retrieved May 13, 2022.
  17. ^ "COVID-19 and Academic Governance". AAUP. May 24, 2021. Retrieved May 13, 2022.
  18. ^ "AAUP finds major erosion of shared governance during COVID-19". May 26, 2021. Retrieved May 13, 2022.
  19. ^ Faas, Natalie (June 15, 2021). "Canisius among six other colleges to join the AAUP's list of sanctioned institutions". Griffin Newspaper. Retrieved May 13, 2022.
  20. ^ "Canisius professors fight to keep tenure". February 23, 2021. Retrieved May 13, 2022.
  21. ^ "Canisius College Under Federal Investigation". Retrieved May 13, 2022.
  22. ^ "Lawsuit accuses Canisius College of allowing rape culture on running teams". WKBW. April 20, 2021. Retrieved May 13, 2022.
  23. ^ "Lawsuit Claims Canisius College Discriminated Against Female Athletes | Inside Higher Ed". April 22, 2021. Retrieved May 13, 2022.
  24. ^ "Under the Rug and Quietly Out the Door",, accessed June 4, 2022
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  27. ^ "Canisius College Awarded University Status | Canisius College - Buffalo, NY". Retrieved May 1, 2023.
  28. ^ a b "Canisius College - Christ the King Chapel". Archived from the original on September 4, 2012. Retrieved November 5, 2015.
  29. ^ "Christ the King Chapel | Canisius College". Retrieved November 5, 2015.
  30. ^ "Canisius receives boost in funding for Science Hall." Buffalo News (New York). (June 7, 2008 Saturday ): 407 words. LexisNexis Academic. Web. Date Accessed: 2016/05/03.
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  32. ^ "Science Hall". Archived from the original on December 2, 2015. Retrieved November 2, 2015.
  33. ^ The Griffin: volume 15, issue 04 - Nov. 7, 1947 pg. 5
  34. ^ The Griffin: volume 16, issue 04 - Nov. 5, 1948 pg. 5
  35. ^ "Canisius' purchase expands campus." Buffalo News (New York). (November 22, 2008 Saturday ): 329 words. LexisNexis Academic. Web. Date Accessed: 2016/05/03.
  36. ^ "Canisius College begins tear-down of parking ramp". August 2022.
  37. ^ a b "Unloved, maybe, but standing tall; Canisius College Amherst 50 Delaware Ave. 200 Niagara St. Downtown Buffalo 701-705 Maple Road, Amherst 1425 Main St. 153 Franklin St. 1300 Elmwood Ave.." The Buffalo News (New York). (March 8, 2015 Sunday ): 1999 words. LexisNexis Academic. Web. Date Accessed: 2016/05/03.
  38. ^ "FRANCES G. CHURCHILL, PHILANTHROPIST, SUPPORTER OF ARTS; EDUCATION, DIES AT 82." Buffalo News (New York). (January 23, 1999, Saturday, FINAL EDITION ): 687 words. LexisNexis Academic. Web. Date Accessed: 2016/05/03.
  39. ^ "FATHER DEMSKE HONORED FOR SERVICE TO CANISIUS COLLEGE AT GRADUATION." Buffalo News (New York). (May 22, 1993, Saturday, Final Edition ): 734 words. LexisNexis Academic. Web. Date Accessed: 2016/05/03.
  40. ^ "Bouwhuis Library Becomes Technology-Based Learning Commons | Canisius College". Archived from the original on August 6, 2016. Retrieved May 3, 2016.
  41. ^ "Who IS Andrew L. Bouwhuis, S. J.? - Andrew L. Bouwhuis Library". Retrieved August 18, 2017.
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  43. ^ "About the Library". Canisius Andrew L. Bouwhuis Library. Archived from the original on November 13, 2015. Retrieved November 4, 2015.
  44. ^ "JOHN W. KOESSLER JR. IS DEAD AT 69; TURNED GREATER BUFFALO; PRESS INTO INDUSTRY LEADER." Buffalo News (New York). (April 14, 1997, Monday, CITY EDITION ): 1118 words. LexisNexis Academic. Web. Date Accessed: 2016/05/03.
  45. ^ "Sports & Athletic Facilities". April 29, 2016. Retrieved August 18, 2017.
  46. ^ "Animal Behavior Ecology and Conservation - Canisius College". Retrieved April 5, 2015.
  47. ^ "Creative Writing". Retrieved April 5, 2015.
  48. ^ "Journalism". Retrieved April 5, 2015.
  49. ^ "Pre-Medical and Pre-Health Professions". Canisius College. September 20, 2016.
  50. ^ a b "Ranking". Retrieved December 17, 2021.
  51. ^ "Ranking". Retrieved October 21, 2019.
  52. ^ "Canisius College Accounting Graduates Rank 1st Overall in New York State on 2014 CPA Exam | Canisius College". Archived from the original on August 7, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2016.
  53. ^ "Events". Archived from the original on September 14, 2009. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
  54. ^ "Oktoberfest 2009 Tonight" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on July 19, 2010. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
  55. ^ "Division 1 Sports". April 29, 2016.
  56. ^ "Canisius routs VMI, earns MAAC championship and NCAA bid". May 4, 2008. Archived from the original on May 17, 2008. Retrieved May 5, 2008.
  57. ^ "Baseball History & Records - The Official Web Site of Canisius College Athletics". Retrieved April 5, 2015.
  58. ^ "Softball History & Records - The Official Web Site of Canisius College Athletics". Retrieved April 5, 2015.
  59. ^ "Battle of the Bridge - The Official Web Site of Canisius College Athletics". June 23, 2008. Retrieved April 5, 2015.
  60. ^ "THE NAME GAME; NICKNAMES FOR LOCAL TEAMS PASS THE TEST." Buffalo News (New York). (May 20, 1996, Monday, CITY EDITION ): 1397 words. LexisNexis Academic. Web. Date Accessed: 2016/05/03.
  61. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on August 6, 2016. Retrieved May 3, 2016.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  62. ^ "Biography – CAVELIER DE LA SALLE, RENÉ-ROBERT – Volume I (1000-1700) – Dictionary of Canadian Biography". Retrieved August 18, 2017.
  63. ^ "". Archived from the original on March 3, 2016. Retrieved August 18, 2017.
  64. ^ "Canisius College Greek Life". Archived from the original on May 3, 2016.
  65. ^ "Classics Club: CanisiusCollege". Canisius College. Archived from the original on April 11, 2015. Retrieved May 3, 2013.
  66. ^ "Home".
  67. ^ "The Wire - Canisius College Radio". Archived from the original on April 10, 2015. Retrieved April 5, 2015.
  68. ^ "Public Safety | Campus Life | Canisius College". Retrieved February 25, 2016.
  69. ^ "Article 2 - Criminal Procedure Law - Peace Officers". Retrieved August 18, 2017.
  70. ^ Pace, Eric (June 17, 1994). "James Demske, 72, A Jesuit Priest Who Led Canisius College". The New York Times. Retrieved July 28, 2017.
  71. ^ "Profile for Steven Seegel at UT Austin". Retrieved May 13, 2022.

External links edit

42°55′31″N 78°51′10″W / 42.92528°N 78.85278°W / 42.92528; -78.85278