Sustainability Initiative

Our Mission & Vision for Canisius

As a Jesuit institution, Canisius College is called to uphold the ethical standards of social and ecological justice. As part of our model of being “men and women with and for others,” we recognize and affirm our responsibility to educate ourselves and engage with our campus community and surrounding communities in ways that promote the wellbeing of the social and physical environments around us. We will work to cultivate the integral ecology called for in Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si. In addition, we commit ourselves to the enactment of sustainable practices that ensure our students, staff, and faculty will not only minimize the ecological footprint of Canisius, but will also work to promote harmony and prosperity for all beings now and into the future. We will enact this mission in our physical, curricular, social, economic, and spiritual practices to create a united campus community. This mission will be carried out through integration of three prime components: Academic and Curricular Coordination, Service to Community and Environment, and Campus Culture.

The goal of this group is that Canisius becomes an environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable organization into the future, with a culture tied fundamentally to justice in each of these areas. We envision a future where facilities, administration, faculty, students, and staff all work together seamlessly to maintain a green, just, and caring campus that has mutually beneficial and lasting relationships with the surrounding Buffalo neighborhoods and communities. 

Our initiatives seek to enhance the formal and informal learning opportunities available at the College, as well as support activities and initiatives promoting sustainability.

These departments and centers are currently associated with the Sustainability Initiative:

Learning About Sustainability

Among all three schools at Canisius, there are many courses that address issues of sustainability and human-nature relationships. Many of these courses are in specific programs, but several of them also service the common core. We also have several student clubs on campus that focus on sustainability-related issues.


Courses that emphasize sustainability as one of the learning objectives


Student groups emphasizing sustainability-related issues

Academic & Curricular Connections

In addition to existing coursework, we are developing new opportunities for students to learn about and practice sustainability through research opportunities, classroom-based learning, and field experiences that emphasize creativity, morality, and rigor in understanding and providing solutions for environmental issues in our communities and our world.

Community-Environment Projects

In partnership with the Oxford Block Club and Public School 17, faculty and students from Canisius College are developing a community garden. Our community garden is a symbol of our mission. We want to see the garden become a beautiful, multi-use green space that promotes cross-pollination of ideas, exchange of knowledge, and the sharing of food among students, staff, faculty, school children, and neighbors.

Campus Culture & Facilities

Along with student groups, academic departments, facilities, and administration, we are committed to building a campus that embodies sustainability and strives to reduce the impact that Canisius has on the natural world and the surrounding neighborhoods. This will require not only technical expertise and institutional changes, but also a change in the culture across our campus toward more ecologically and socially just practices.