Pathfinders Academic Exploration Program

Start Your Journey Here

The educational experience at Canisius reflects a unique path tailored to your interests and ambitions. But what if you’re not entirely sure what you’d like your path to look like? What if you want to explore academic programs to help you identify a major? 

Introducing Pathfinders, a special program designed for first-year students just like you:

Who: First-year undergraduate students who haven’t chosen an academic major
What: A dedicated support program that allows you to explore potential fields of study matching your unique strengths and interests
Why: Choose a course of study so you can create a meaningful academic path, stay on track to graduate on time, and begin a rewarding career

One-on-One Advisement 

As a Pathfinder, you’ll work with an advisor from the Griff Center for Student Success to create a first-year schedule that includes courses within our liberal arts core. Through regular meetings, you’ll research the 100+ major, minor and special programs available to undergraduate students and identify the options that best match your interests and goals. 

pathfinders advisement
Hands-on learning, supported by our 11-to-1 student-faculty ratio, ensures a deeply rewarding academic experience for every student.

Major Matters: Discover Your Unique Path 

Major Matters (GRIFF 203) is a weekly seminar designed exclusively for Pathfinders. You’ll be guided through exercises to assess your strengths and identify the academic areas that inspire you the most. You’ll explore different majors and potential career paths. You’ll also gain valuable insights about yourself and develop a healthy self-awareness that will enable you to thrive—no matter what path you choose.

Assess Your Strengths 

Using two professional assessment tools, you’ll evaluate your habits and skill sets:

  • CliftonStrengths Assessment – identify your “talent DNA” with this self-assessment built around 34 different themes. You’ll learn how to use your talents and skills to build relationships, think strategically, execute plans and influence others—even before you complete your freshman year.
  • Strong Interest Inventory (SII) – assess both your work personality and your personal style preferences. You’ll also identify the top 10 most compatible careers based on your results.  
Regardless of their major, Griffs become part of a worldwide alumni network that’s nearly 50,000 strong – and counting.

Build Your Network and Explore Careers 

Work with the Griff Center to develop your individual career plan and gain the professional skills you need in today’s competitive job market. You’ll research internship opportunities and connect with professionals in fields that match your own interests. You’ll also be able to tap into our extensive alumni network as you explore career options.

Stay on Track 

Up to 75 percent of undergraduate students change their major at least once before graduation. Because the Pathfinders program offers guided exploration, you’ll find the right-fit major more easily, graduate on time, and be well-positioned for your future career.


Get in touch:

The Office of Undergraduate Admissions

Tracy Callaghan
Associate Director, Academic Achievement