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Trivia Wednesday

The campus community is invited to watch The Dome for special “Trivia Wednesdays,” which will be published throughout the school year in every Wednesday edition. The first person to respond to with the correct answer will win Canisius “swag.”

Additionally, once a month on Wednesdays, there will be a special giveaway in which the winner will receive some of the newly-designed Canisius sesquicentennial gear.

Winners will be announced the following Wednesday of each week along with the correct trivia answer.

This week’s giveaway question is:

What is the meaning of the Latin phrase Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam?

Congratulations to Courtney Sullivan, a leadership giving officer with the Canisius Fund. Sullivan was last week’s winner of Trivia Wednesday. She’ll receive some Canisius swag once the college returns to normal operations.

Last week’s Trivia Wednesday question was:

What percentage of Canisius graduates work or study in their chosen fields?

a. 90%

b. 85%

c. 92%

d. 80%

The correct answer was: (C) 92%

Submitted by: College Communications

Campus Candid … sort of


Faculty, students, and alumni from the anthrozoology master’s program held a meet-up on Zoom to get together, socialize and talk about human-animal relationships during the quarantine. Twenty-four participants showed up, representing students from the first cohort (2010-2011) all the way up to current students. There were attendees across four different time zones and plenty of students and alumni who wanted to attend but could not for various reasons. It was a great opportunity to reconnect during these precarious times and to talk about current events that are impacting people’s studies, research, and careers.

Submitted by: Joshua Russell, PhD, assistant professor, ABEC

Canisius in the News

Emeriti Professors of Psychology Judith E. Larkin, PhD and Harvey A. Pines, PhD, penned a letter to The Buffalo News editorial page, which appeared in the Tuesday, April 14 edition. The letter, titled “Reaction to Scarcity has Scientific Basis,” offers an unusual but science-grounded explanation for why so many people are amassing toilet paper during the COVID-19 pandemic. Click here to read their letter.

Submitted by: College Communications

Physics Professors Join Effort to Develop Ventilators

Physics Professors Michael Wood, PhD and Erden Ertorer, PhD, are joining a multi-university effort to develop an inexpensive ventilator to supplement a predicted shortage of the devices during the COVID-19 pandemic.

As the public has learned in recent weeks, a ventilator can be a lifesaving device for those hospitalized with the respiratory infection caused by the virus, and the cost to produce them can run upwards of thousands of dollars.

Researchers at the University of Florida Center for Safety, Simulation and Advanced Learning Technologies are working to develop a less expensive but still viable ventilator that can be used by healthcare providers.  The cost of the design is about $200 and consists of parts that can be purchased at Lowes or Home Depot.  The electronic controllers for the devices are made of common circuit elements and programmable micro-controllers called Arduino’s.

The Canisius Physics Department teaches programming of micro-controllers in its Basic Electronics course (PHY226) and introduces the Arduino’s in its Introduction to Engineering course (EGR111).  With their experience in these two areas, Wood and Ertorer have joined the effort to test the ventilators’ control software.

Others can too.

Christopher Bass, PhD, an associate professor of physics at Le Moyne College in Syracuse, NY, has put out a call for volunteers on the project through a list serve for instructors of Advanced Physics Lab courses.  Additionally, the University of Florida has made the project an open source and is sharing the design freely on its webpage.

Anyone interested in joining the project should visit this webpage for more information.

Submitted by: Michael Wood, PhD, chair and professor, Physics and Pre-Engineering


(Virtual) Therapy Dogs Help Health Communication Students Cope

Canisius student Leah Simmons photo shopped a picture of herself and her (virtual) dog, Halford, in the park.

Melissa Wanzer, EdD, is using some (virtual) creativity to help students in her Health Communication class cope in these confusing times … and she’s doing it with a little help from Canisius President John Hurley.

During a recent class group chat, students suggested that “if the college gave them each a dog, it would help with their stress levels,” says Wanzer. After some serious consideration, Wanzer pitched the idea of a fun pilot program to students; one aimed at both engaging students and determining the effects (virtual) dogs could have on student health.

Students responded to the idea with great enthusiasm and confidently suggested that “If each student received a free dog from the college, they would report less stress – and get 4.0 GPAs,” explains Wanzer.

Griff Dogs was launched and the first request for a pet pooch went to none other than Canisius President John Hurley. Always a good sport, President Hurley responded, sending each student in Wanzer’s class their own virtual dog.

“Canisius already has emotional support animals on campus so sending them off campus to our students at this time seems like a logical next step,” wrote President Hurley in a letter to Wanzer’s students.

Since then, students have “named their dogs” and share “updates” about them with their classmates.

“I just felt like the students needed some levity,” explains Wanzer about her idea for Griff Dogs. “They are a bit overwhelmed and so this is something light that they can run with.”

Below are pictures of the virtual dogs President Hurley sent to Wanzer’s students.

Submitted by: College Communications