Canisius Establishes Institute for Classical and Medieval Studies

June 12, 2018

BUFFALO, NY ‒ Canisius College recently established an Institute for Classical and Medieval Studies (ICMS) to provide interdisciplinary learning and research opportunities for students, faculty and residents of the greater Buffalo community in an effort to enrich lives through intellectual engagement. As a collaborative effort of faculty from the Departments of Classics, English, Fine Arts, History, Philosophy and Religious Studies and Theology, ICMS embraces Canisius’ Jesuit tradition by bridging disciplines in its quest for greater understanding of the past and the present.

“So much of what is happening in the world today, good and bad, is rooted in the past,” said Kathryn Williams, PhD, chair of Classics and a co-founder and co-director of ICMS. “Greater awareness of ancient and medieval societies provides critical perspectives on current events and can help us as we strive to create a better tomorrow.”

ICMS launched in March with a public lecture on “Peter Canisius, the Humanities and Jesuit Education.” Additional events included a unique interpretation of Beowulf with a Celtic harp performance and a course on “The Great Persian War.”

ICMS is also reaching out to the Buffalo community with its Lifelong Learners Center. These six-session seminars are not part of any Canisius degree program, but rather are designed for alumni and community residents interested in learning about some aspect of the ancient or medieval world and its relevance today.  Two courses, one on the British monarchy, “Crown, Sword, and Charter:  Making the Monarchy,” (Julie Gibert, PhD, associate professor, history), the other on the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World (Erin Warford, PhD, adjunct professor, Classics), are scheduled for fall 2018.

In fall 2018, ICMS will also introduce the Canisius Camino, a guided pathway through the college’s Core Curriculum for Canisius students. Establishing a medieval studies minor, facilitating student-faculty research, hosting additional public events, and developing study abroad opportunities are among ICMS’ future plans. Further details are available on ICMS’s website here. 

Canisius College is one of 28 Jesuit universities in the nation and the premier private university in Western New York.