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Spotlight on Student Learning

HonorsThe centerpiece of the All-College Honors Program is the thesis, and all Honors students must satisfactorily complete this requirement. Each thesis student follows a detailed thesis handbook, meets with the program director four times, and works closely with a faculty adviser throughout the semester to plan, draft, revise, and refine the written thesis, which must be at least 35 pages of text.

In addition to the preparation of the written document, which is evaluated by two rubrics, each student must defend his or her thesis, which showcases the student’s considerable accomplishment and provides another opportunity for evaluation. The defense is heard by the student’s adviser, a second reader, and a member of the Honors Advisory Committee. During the defense, each faculty member completes a different rubric that evaluates the quality of the student’s presentation, breadth of knowledge, ability to answer questions, and use of technology. Because the thesis and the thesis defense are evaluated by several faculty—sometimes as many as eight—the Honors thesis exercise provides ample evidence of the students’ sense of responsibility, knowledge, critical thinking skills, written expression, oral presentation skills, and integrity. From these multiple assessments, the Honors Program has consistently demonstrated that its students are highly motivated and skilled researchers, thinkers and presenters.

The aggregate data for Honors theses written in the fall, 2015, show that 85 percent “exceeded” standards, with a quarter of these receiving perfect scores. The top Honors thesis receives the Kristin M. Brady Award at the annual Honors banquet.

Pictured above: Liz Piotrowski ’16, Honors Student Board president and Honors Student Association president, accepted into SUNY Upstate Medical University

Submitted by: Sara Morris, associate vice president, academic affairs

Important Information Regarding 2015 Tax Filing

At Canisius College, we value our employees and are committed to providing you and your family with affordable, substantial health benefits that meet the requirements of “minimum essential coverage” under the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

On December 21, 2015, an email was sent regarding new forms that the IRS is requiring for proof of health insurance coverage. The form titled 1095-C was to be issued by the same date as W2’s (February 1 for 2016).  Then, on December 28, 2015 the IRS notified employers that an extension for the issue date was provided. The new deadline is March 31, 2016.

You will also be receiving Form 1095-B from Independent Health. It contains information about who provides your health insurance, as well as which members of your family are covered by the policy and the months of the year each person was covered.

The delay of the forms does not impact filing taxes for 2015 if you are enrolled in employer-sponsored coverage. Taxes filed prior to receiving the 1095-C and 1095-B will not require an amended return to be filed.  Once the forms are received, file the forms with your tax information. The college is working on distributing these forms prior to the March 31, 2016 deadline.

If you or your spouse claims a premium tax credit for coverage on the Health Market Exchange, these forms will be needed in order to file taxes for 2015. If the taxes are filed prior to receipt of these forms, an amended return will need to be completed.

If you have any questions, please contact Dawn Rotterman at Ext. 3151 or by email at

Submitted by: Dawn Rotterman, benefits specialist, human resources

TIAA CREF Representative on Campus

Greg Tedone, Financial Consultant for TIAA-CREF, will be on campus Tuesday, February 23 in Science Hall Room 1017 and again on Tuesday, March 15 in the Student Center Conference Room for individual counseling sessions. He will meet with individuals to review and discuss current investments, answer questions, and review their options to help meet retirement goals.

To schedule an appointment, contact the TIAA CREF Service and Scheduling Group at 1-800-732-8353.