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Volume LXXXVI, Number 1


September 11, 2015

Into a Brighter Future By Jesse P.R. Prieto News Editor

& CJ Gates


On the afternoon of Wednesday 5 Sept., Canisius President and former Griffin editor John J. Hurley, fresh off a new fiveyear contract extension from the Canisius Board of Trustees, stood before the board, faculty, and students to give the community direction towards what looks to be a bright future. The hallowed halls of Canisius College have stood strong for 145 years, and the current administration believes it can maintain these walls for a century more. Following several financially turbulent years, featuring cuts to both budgets and faculty, Canisius is once again on solid financial ground. Since 2010, the College has been operating under a policy of crisis management. As Hurley stated at last year’s convocation, “we determined that, while we had not managed the financial aid process well, we were experiencing a fundamental downward shift in our undergraduate enrollment patterns.” The light at the end of the tunnel looks to be much brighter. As such, the administration believes it is time to step out of crisis mode and into a refocused place of growth, though Hurley was quick to point out the College would not simply pursue growth for growth’s sake. In 2009, the College’s endowment, which was largely propped up by real estate, was hit hard as the Great Recession tore through the global economy. While the United States faced a loss of 8.4 million jobs, Canisius lost nearly 50 percent of its col-

lege-wide endowment, which dipped down to $57 million in spring of 2009 before it began to steadily climb to the $108 million dollar mark that Hurley announced on Wednesday. The college’s commitment to austerity, shuffling both offices and personnel, and gathering support from alumni and friends has led to the recent turnaround in the endowment’s fortune. Though the road has been rocky and not without controversy, Canisius continues to show signs of triumph as it weathers this storm. Not only has the endowment gone up, but student retention numbers have also seen an increase as well which, despite freshman enrollment being smaller than expected, has led to an overall undergraduate enrollment that was above expectations, according to Hurley. Additionally, Hurley touted the fact the college finished with its first operating surplus in several years last year and pointed to additional consolidations of the Offices of Financial Aid, Student Accounts and Student Records into one streamlined office known as Student Records and Financial Services Center. Back in 2013, Hurley openly expressed the College’s budget deficit, lower-than-needed enrollment, and an overall decline in higher education enrollment nationwide. It was a rallying cry, for the community as a whole to continue pressing through in unity as the administration toyed with numbers and future expectations. Despite aggressive recruitment targeting both graduate and undergraduate students coupled with austerity measures, the 2013 academic year saw the

college fall short - far short. With an 80% student retention from 2012 to 2013 alone, the College saw a further loss of $2.6 million in revenue on top of the already bloated deficit. By the same time the following year, campus was straught with change. Faculty was cut, department budgets were downsized, and students bore yet another rise in tuition. 2013 was not without controversy - witnessing a political battle between President Hurley and then-Student President Brock Wilkinson over the presence of a student representative of the budget committee. Tension between the community and administration was further stretched as wave after wave of disappointing slogans, flyers, and letter campaigns were released. The retirement of “Where leaders are made” and subsequent release of “Go Exploring” in 2012 and “Discover” in 2013 was seen as a detrimental blow to tradition as Canisius continued its soul-searching “walk-about.” Canisius seemed to have rid itself of growing pains as Canisius dropped the five hundred thousand dollar outsourced campaign, and turned inward to reshape its identity. By the end of 2014 the Career Center, Tutoring Center, Campus Programming Leadership Development, and Residence Life were rehashed into the Griff Center for Academic Engagement and Student Life, creating a more streamlined and economically efficient cohort of student-needs outlets. Financial Aid, Student Accounts, and Student Affairs all shifted, maneuvering around the redrawn bureaucratic lines.

Studio fit for ESPN By Dominic Chamberlain Sports Editor

You can tell a good television production from a bad one. When you watched last night’s NFL season opener between the New England Patriots and Pittsburgh Steelers you saw a professional sports broadcast at the highest production level possible. But when you watch your local High School football team on local access television, you get half of the production the folks at NBC put on last night, if that. Along at the top of the sports production world is ESPN, they are after all the worldwide leader in sports. If you need proof just watch any broadcast they put on the air. Everything from their weekly Monday Night Football broadcasts to their NBA coverage and even down to the Little

Since 1933

League World Series is top notch television. Over the summer, Canisius got a studio fit for those types of broadcasts. Take a trip into Science Hall and walk down past the plant wall to the room filled with monitors, computers and boards with flashing lights and

Studio fit for a King

buttons. If you turn around and walk back to the plant wall and look to the right of the bay of computers, you will see a room with a big green wall and three robotic cameras. All of this is now available to Canisius and its students to put on those high quality broadcasts. see ESPN @9

Photo: Dominic Chamberlain

Canisius College, Buffalo, N.Y.

The hallowed halls of Canisius College.

The rebalancing of budgets, repositioning of staff, and the overall reshaping of campus seems to be showing signs of progress. In 2013 the endowment had regained much of its lost strength with $94,479,000 in total. By the end of the 2014 fall semester another $10 million had been added in net value puting the college over its much needed hundred million dollar mark. Having only been in office one year, Vice President for Business and Finance Marco Benedetti achieved remarkable growth by tapping into willing donor base and, more importantly, creating a more diverse balance of assets in the endowment’s portfolio. This year, President Hurley proudly announced

that the College’s growth has continued at a sustainable rate and is now at $108 million in net value. Despite all hardships, Canisius has risen in the rankings placing 451 in 2010 and rising to 435 nation wide according to US News “America’s Best Colleges” in 2015. Financial footing is strong, and Canisius is on pace to maintain a balanced budget; “We are in the best position we have been in, in the last five years,” said Hurley. Much like the rest of Buffalo, Canisius has put its past behind it and is now marching forward to a brighter future.

Rustbelt Renaissance in the Harbor By Nathan Ress & Malachite Karpie Jones Editor-in-Chief

From bartenders to Bylsma, the Canalside hype is real and only just getting started. Far past the bustling realms of Elmwood and Hertel, a new visitor destination has emerged seemingly out of the rubble at the foot of the downtown corridor. The Erie Canal Harbor, or Canalside as it’s becoming locally known, is wrapping up its first full summer with complete attractions following a massive $52 million renovation haul that began in 2012. When construction was finalized this past spring, it didn’t take long for Buffalonians and tourists alike to flock to the Queen City’s new gem. Complete with several Buffalo-oriented businesses, new restaurant experiences, and massive green space beside the Skyway for concerts and festivals, Canalside will have hosted over one thousand events and seen over one million faces visit their attractions by the time 2015 comes to a close. Canalside has become so much more than a couple water-

front restaurants and mom-pop shops in such a short period of time. Built in 1825 as the western terminus of the Erie Canal, it served as a hub of commercial prominence until its steady decline in the 1920s. Fast forward to 2005, the Erie Canal Harbor is little more than a massive parking lot and collection of debris from the Memorial Auditorium’s demolition. New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo and local business figures have recognized the area’s potential for economic growth in Western New York. Ten years and $52 million later, the Erie County Harbor Development Corporation (ECHDC) has completed their initial renovation of the 12.5 acre Inner and Outer Harbor Kathy Hilliman, an experienced sailor with the familyowned-and-operated Spirit of Buffalo, spoke highly of the Harbor’s new changes and influx of clientele it has brought to Buffalo’s premier tour vessel. “It’s been wonderful, our business is easily the best it’s ever been. The three years of renovation and waiting were absolutely see Harbor @ 3 Design 2015 Annie Niland

The Griffin Volume LXXXVI, Number 1  

The Griffin is the student-run newspaper of Canisius College. 9/11/15 issue, the first of the Fall '15 semester.

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