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The Canisius College Digital Legacy Theses Collection that includes more than 700 legacy graduate theses (ca. 1920 – 2000, non-inclusive) is now available. Graduate students at Canisius College authored the theses in this collection.  College Student Personnel Administration (now Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration) and All-College Honors theses are not included in this collection due to copyright and publishing permissions.

Have you ever wondered what your parents or grandparents were writing about when they were in college? What issues were of concern to students in the 1940’s (or 20’s or 70’s)? These graduate-level theses offer glimpses into academic studies, curricula, language, and social mores of the times they were written. They contribute commentary on a rich ethnic, racial, and ecumenical urban environment in and around campus. They document brick and mortar changes to the College and western New York region. Societal aspects of the theses include descriptions of college life and traditions like Moving Up Day, awards, inductions to honor societies, extracurricular activities, and sports (ex. Little Three rivalries at the “Aud”), as well as comparison to other Jesuit or state/public institutions. The theses cover educational practices and innovations. There are also discussions of Buffalo schools, churches, neighborhoods, and the demographics of the city.

A number of the theses are comprised of comparative studies that include solid “current” data to provide a glimpse into a fixed point in time.  The theses themselves are of interest as products with visual or graphic arts such as fonts, attachments, maps, and graphs drawn or written by hand.

We are grateful to Kathleen Delaney, Reference Librarian and Archivist, who painstakingly reviewed the digital versions of the theses for quality control and to ensure that each thesis was completely digitized.  The collection is searchable through the Canisius library catalog: (use the drop down menu to limit your search to Theses). For assistance with searching the collection or viewing a digitized these, please contact the College Archivist by emailing

Submitted by: Sara R Morris, vice president for Academic Affairs