Biology Department CANISIUS COLLEGE - Spring 2017

In an ever changing world, the Department of Biology at Canisius College continuously evolves to ensure quality in everything we do – the past 40 years have seen a great deal of change in many facets of the program, but the quality has always remained constant. From Al Alexander to Sarah Tulin, the many faculty of the Biology program have established and maintained a very high caliber program. A program’s success is based upon their graduates and this program has risen to great heights because of the overwhelming successes of its graduates – THANK YOU!

The home of our program has changed from Old Main to the Health Science Center, and we are excited to share with you that the program is next up to be phased into the state of the art Science Hall. The architectural plans for our programs’ move have been generated and we look forward to inviting you all to an undergraduate research symposium and tour of the new facilities in the future. Regardless of our physical home, the years have seen programmatic development associated with grant funds from Howard Hughes, NSF and USDA, however in all cases the development of the program was linked with student success.

Over the years we have transitioned to focus on undergraduate student research and in support of that focus the Biology faculty have selected and welcomed many highly effective new members to its ranks. The program is currently at a zenith as it maintains many young faculty whose eagerness for undergraduate involvement in the research labs and continued programmatic development are at an all time high.

Many new programs are in the planning and development phase. Several programs, including the development of experiences associated with an Institute of Sustainability are being focused upon. The sustainability effort is a collaboration between the Environmental Sciences program, the Animal Behavior, Ecology and Conservation program, the Environmental Studies program and the Biology program in which the tenants of service learning and the Jesuit Values are examined and practiced. In these experiences, students from diverse programs are given the opportunity to engage with the neighbors and the larger Buffalo community to act on the mission of the institution – “being men and women with and for others”.

We congratulate you on all of your successes and we thank you for your service to our community and more so, we invite you to become active with your Biology program and we welcome all who accept this invitation.

From the Desks of the Department Chairs:

Greetings to all Biology and Environmental Sciences program graduates!

Drs. Grebenok and Hogan were elected as the department co-chairs in May of 2016.

We have fortunately inherited a program that maintains a high quality, dedicated and eager collection of faculty who have, and continue to drive the program and initiatives to great heights.

Several of these initiatives involve the development and redevelopment of programs that serve the undergraduate population within our program and the institution.

This past academic year Biology faculty Andrew Stewart, Jon O’Brien, Sara Morris, Sue Margulis and Bob Grebenok won external funding from the NSF and USDA. The support was used to further the development of programs including undergraduate student retention and undergraduate student research.

To highlight our research efforts, the department organized a Research Symposium in conjunction with Alumni weekend. Our students presented their research to their fellow students, faculty, administrators, alumni and their families. This symposium is a yearly event and we hope that additional alumni can attend in the future.

Beyond academics, our students continue to impress us with their broad based talents and uses of their time. In addition to meeting all of expectations in the classroom, the students also participate in student government, campus ministry, they compete in NCAA division 1 sports and they engage and serve. This service involves many communities around the globe, accessed through service trips and engagement in our own Buffalo community.

As always, the Department, students and faculty, would not exist as a community without the wonderful interactions we have with you, our alumni. We encourage you to keep us up to date with events in your lives and don't be shy; please share your Alumni profile with us. Please visit our web site and Facebook page to learn more about what we do and how you can become involved.

Thank You!

Current Faculty & Staff

Elizabeth Hogan, Ph.D.
  • Co-chair
  • Neurobiology
Robert Grebenok, Ph.D.
  • Co-chair
  • Physiology / Biochemistry
Edward Kisailus, Ph.D.
  • Immunology
Michael Noonan, Ph.D.
  • Animal Behavior
Susan Margulis, Ph.D.
  • Animal Behavior
Katie Costanzo, Ph.D.
  • Entomology / Ecology
Lisa Morey, Ph.D.
  • Molecular Biology
Andrew Stewart, Ph.D.
  • Population Genetics / Evolution
Jonathan O’Brien Ph.D.
  • Freshwater Ecology
Daniel Haeusser, Ph.D.
  • Microbiology
Sarah Tulin, Ph.D.
  • Developmental Biology
Jason Mayberry, Ph.D.
  • Physiology
Kristen Covino, Ph.D.
  • EcoPhysiology / Avian Biology
Mary Culp, M.S.
  • General Biology Laboratory
Larry Tassini
  • Director of Biology Laboratories
Colleen O’Hara
  • Administrative Associate
Sara Morris
  • Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs
  • Ornithology / Avian Migration

Previous Faculty and Staff

  • Susan Aronica / Physiology / passed
  • Ann Wright / Education / passed
  • Barbara Hanson / Microbiology / retired living in Texas
  • Lisa Antozewski / Developmental Biology / moved working in Pittsburgh
  • Paula Dehn / Environmental Toxicology / moved working in Kentucky
  • Sai Chidambaram / Physiology / retired living in Western New York
  • John Kalb / Developmental Biology / passed
  • Pamela Lein / Neurobiology / moved working in California
  • Darold Batzer / Ecology / moved working in Georgia
  • Joe Tomasulo / Anatomy & Physiology / retired living in Western New York
  • Chris Fialkiewicz / Administrative Associate / passed
  • Nancy Wohlschlag / Laboratory Manager / passed

Contact Us!


Students Engaged in Research

Fall Research Symposium

More than 125 students, alumni, family members, faculty, and administrators of Canisius College attended the poster presentation given by 23 Canisius research students. The students presented results from their research carried out throughout the year under the guidance of the Biology faculty.

Paul Hart ('17) discusses his research with Gabby Bartheleme ('17) and family

Lana Aquila ('17) discusses her research with Dr. Peg McCarthy (Academic Vice President of Canisius College) and family

Andrew Beiter ('17) discusses his research with Drs. O'Brien and Stewart and Kyle Samson ('17)

Josh Harkins ('17) discusses his research with John Sebastiani ('14)

Dr. Hogan's research team, L to R - Mia LaMarco ('17), Nate Rexinger ('17), Dr. Hogan, Eva Gorney ('17) and Dilpreet Kaur ('17)

Christian Montes ('18) discusses his research with AnneMarie Block ('75)

Faculty Spotlight

Dr. Dan Haeusser

Q: What experiences did you have that made you want to go into microbiology?

A: I started at Juniata College with a Biochemistry Program of Emphasis. My interests to that point were mostly in chemistry. I ended up being able to get a research position in a molecular biology lab that worked on yeast. This was my entry introduction to microbes. Once I arrived at graduate school through one of the labs I did a research rotation and worked on bacterial cell division and I quickly became passionate about bacteria. My research advisor’s interest in it certainly helped me to appreciate it more and make me want to pursue it

Q: Why Canisius?

A: For me the overriding Canisius commitment to Jesuit principals is something that is a unique strength for a campus our size. In terms of the Biology department, I will paraphrase something I’ve heard Dr. Stewart succinctly remark that I utterly agree with. We have large school department opportunities in a small school culture. Really the best of both worlds. We offer a very complete span of biology with an array of courses that in most cases you wouldn’t find at a small school. Yet we also keep small class sizes and individualized student-centered mentorship

Q: What does your research focus on?

A: Bacterial cell division and viruses that infect the bacteria to alter their cell shape or division. This is basic science research to understand how bacteria function, but the systems bear relevance to things found in all life. And as something essential for bacteria to survive, targeting their division is attractive for novel antibiotic development. So it helps others involved in that kind of work to understand how the bacteria normally divide.

Q: Who is your favorite scientist?

A: Jaques Monod. He was a biochemist/molecular biologist involved in figuring out the basic science of genetic regulation in bacteria and bacterial viruses. Yet as with most of such basic science, the work had profound impact on all sorts of biology including medicine. He was a superb scientist, but he also knew how to relax and had lots of interests in the humanities and politics that intersected with his scientific view of the world. He fought Nazis as part of the French Underground, fought for women’s rights, and later smuggled scientists out of the USSR.

Q: What do you like to do outside of Canisius?

A: Read and write, I write book reviews whenever I can find the time. I also enjoy crosswords, cooking, and film. My wife and I are both quite active at our church, where I sing in the choir. I enjoy baseball, hockey, tennis, boxing and gardening.

Laura Cavallari ('18) conducting the interview with Dr. Hauesser

Alumni Spotlight – Gary Wieczkowski ('64)

Dr. Gary Wieczkowski ('64) is a treasured Canisius Biology Department alumni who has lived the motto of Canisius College (men and women for and with others). Gary has demonstrated this by his actions both in his personal and professional life. We are very proud of Gary's actions and equally proud that he is representing us in all that he does. Below are a selection of questions and answers that provide a glimpse into Gary's life - thank you Gary.

Q: What is your greatest accomplishment

A: I would have to say that foremost in my/our (my wife and I) accomplishments are our children.

Jeffrey received his BA from Geneseo and graduated from the Law School at Syracuse University. He practices in Buffalo.

Neil received his BA from Canisius College and received his Master’s Degree in Fine Arts from UB. At Canisius Neil was inducted into Sigma Tau Delta, the English Honor Society.

Julie received her BS from Cornell University and received her Ph.D in Anthropology from the University of Georgia. Julie is following in my footsteps as an educator, and is an Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology at SUNY Buffalo State.

Q: What are some of the trials and triumphs of your position? What are challenges and successes?

A: I received my DDS degree from SUNY at Buffalo in 1969. While a student I was senior class president and in my senior year was editor-in-chief of the MeDentian, the combined yearbook of the medical and dental students. As a senior I received the Dental Alumni Association Award for University Participation.

Professionally, my greatest satisfaction came during my tenure at the School of Dental Medicine at UB, both as a classroom and clinical teacher, and as Chair of the Department of Operative Dentistry. I loved teaching, and would not trade it for any other profession. The joy of teaching is what made my career valued.

My greatest personal challenge occurred in the fall semester of my sophomore year at dental school. I developed asthma a few weeks before midterm exams, and I missed about six weeks of school. As a result, I earned ‘D’s’ in pharmacology, microbiology and pathology, all medical school courses. Because I could not be promoted with the 3 D’s, I was given the opportunity to take the spring semester courses, and, if I did well, I would be allowed to repeat my sophomore year. I did both, but the challenge was the fact that my wife was pregnant and we had to face an additional year of school and more loans.

Q: How did your Canisius experience prepare you for your career?

A: The rigor of the biology program taught me good studying habits and the importance of keeping up with the material. The department was like a ‘family’, with the faculty and staff caring about us and the students really sticking together through it all. My broad experience at Canisius taught me the value of learning - from religion to science to the humanities - and how to put that knowledge into action.

I now spend my retirement time with our grandkids. I volunteer at Friends of Night People, and am and altar boy, a eucharistic minister and lector at St. John the Baptist Parish in the Town of Tonawanda. I am also the care-giver for my 69 year old brother Paul, who suffers from early onset Alzheimer’s disease, has a seizure disorder, and has cognitive problems.

Congratulations Graduates

Class of 2016

Grants & Awards

Drs. Andrew Stewart, Jon O’Brien, Sara Morris and Sue Margulis – (NSF $1,000,000)

The overall goal of the Canisius Science Scholars S-STEM grant is to increase both retention and success (in all measures) in all student populations. To further these goals, the NSF funds will be used to provide substantial scholarship support of biology and environmental science students, as well as numerous academic activities. These activities include the development of a student-centered learning community, which will include a) sections of existing courses designed to accommodate the entire annual Science Scholars cohort, b) social activities, designed to nurture within- and between-cohort interactions and camaraderie, as well as student-faculty interactions, outside of the formal class setting, and c) academic and career mentoring. The results of this work will generate presentations and publications, so that other institutions can utilize successful elements of the program.

Dr. Robert Grebenok - (USDA $750,000)

This research grant explores eco-physiological mechanisms affecting the abundance of pest species on human food crops. It is based on the fact that all insects require sterols, and that plant-feeding insects typically obtain sterols from their food plants. Exploiting this need offers a novel, target-specific and environmentally friendly approach for controlling insect pests of human food crops. This research explores the potential of using plants with sterols that insect herbivores cannot readily use to control insect herbivore activity on these plants. Our research team, as part of a collaborative group, including faculty and students from Texas A&M University, Cornell University and the Max Planck Institute (Jena Germany) will use this award to support various research activities associated with the control of herbivorous insects. The results of our work will generate publications and presentations.

Undergraduate Senior Awards:

Presented to Graduating Seniors who have demonstrated the work ethic and ideals typical of the categories

TriBeta Fialkiewicz Award for highest GPA – David Kerling

Department Excellence in Research – Josh Harkins

Nancy Wohlschlag Award for Distinguished Research Outcomes – Lanni Aquila and David Kerling

Al Alexander Award for Outstanding Research Accomplishment – Andrew Beiter

John Kalb Award for Exemplary Research Accomplishment – Kyle Samson

Faculty and Student Research Publications:

Canisius students in Bold Font (examples)

Costanzo, K.S., R.A. Dahan, and D. Radwan. Population level consequences and intersexual differences due to varying photoperiods in Aedes albopictus and Aedes aegypti. (2016). International Journal of Tropical Insect Science 36: 177-187.

Hayes, L., Weening, A., and Morey, L. M. (2016) Differential effect of estradiol and bisphenol A on Set8 and Sirt1 expression in ovarian cancer. Dose Response. April; 1-7

Burton, K., Shaw, L., and Morey, L. M. (2015) Differential effect of estradiol and bisphenol A on Set8 and Sirt1 expression in prostate cancer. Toxicology Reports. Feb; 2: 817-23.

Costanzo, K.S., S. Schelble, K. Jerz, and M. Keenan. The effects of photoperiod on life history and behavior in Aedes albopictus and Aedes aegypti (Diptera: Culicidae). 2015. Journal of Vector Ecology 40: 164-171.

Behmer, S., Olszewski, N., Sebastiani, J., Palka, S., Sparacino, G., Sciarrino, E and Grebenok, R. Plant phloem sterol content: forms, putative functions, and implication for phloem-feeding insects. Frontiers in Plant Science, (2014), 4, 370.

Robbins, L. and Margulis, S.W. 2014. The effects of auditory enrichment on gorillas. Zoo Biology. 33: 197-203.

LaDue, C., Madden, M., Perkes-Smith, L., and Margulis, S. 2014. Behavioral changes associated with pregnancy and infant development in captive gorillas. Animal Keepers’ Forum, 41:80-83.

LaDue, CA, Scott, NL, Margulis, SW. 2014. A Survey of musth among captive maleelephants in North America: updated results and implications for management. Journal of the Elephant Managers Association.25: 18-24.

LeFauve, MK, and Margulis, SW. 2015. Functionality in tool use in Western lowland gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla). Animal Behavior and Cognition.2: 96-104.

Robbins, L. and Margulis, S.W. 2016. Music for the birds: effects of auditory enrichmenton captive bird species. Zoo Biology. 35: 29-34.

Parker, L.E., and Sara R. Morris. 2016. Practical Experiences and Co-Curricular Activities in Undergraduate Biology Programs. American Biology Teacher 78:719-724.

Morris, S. R., K. G. Horton, A. K. Tegeler, and M Lanzone. 2016. Individual Flight Calling Behavior in Wood Warblers. Animal Behaviour 114:241-247.

Morris, S. R., K. M. Covino, J. D. Jacobs, and P. D. Taylor. 2016. Autumn migratory patterns of the Blackpoll Warbler at a continental scale. The Auk. 133:41-51.

Covino, K. M., S. R. Morris and F. R. Moore. 2015. Patterns of testosterone in three Nearctic-Neotropical migratory songbirds during spring passage. General and Comparative Endocrinology. 224:186-193.

Morris, S. R. and B. A. Stumpe. 2015. Limited impact of a residential wind turbine on birds on an off-shore island in Maine. Northeastern Naturalist 22:95-105.


Canisius Students in bold font (examples)

Ryan Koch, David Kerling, Courtney Marlinski, Molly Christie and Jonathan M. O’Brien. 2015. Nitrate loading reduces the capacity for nitrate uptake in epilithic biofilms. Society for Freshwater Science Annual Meeting. Milwaukee, WI

Molly Christie, Courtney Marlinski, Ryan Koch, David Kerling and Jonathan M. O’Brien. 2015. DOC and CPOM alter invertebrate community composition and food web dynamics in an urban stream. Society for Freshwater Science Annual Meeting. Milwaukee, WI

Chertoff, S, Margulis, SW. The effects of light and height on the feeding preferences of common vampire bats. National Conference: August 2016: Animal Behavior Society Meeting, Columbia, MO

Musik-Kotlowski, E., Margulis, SW. Investigating maternal styles in Western lowland gorillas. National Conference: August 2016: Animal Behavior Society Meeting, Columbia, MO

Andrew Beiter, Lisa Nelson, Grace Lindsay, Robert Grebenok and Andrew D. Stewart. 2017. Analysis of Drosophila melanogaster viability on different dietary sterols. Midwest Ecology and Evolution Conference. Champaign-Urbana, IL

Kyle Samson and Andrew D. Stewart. Relative body-size scaling in Drosophila melanogaster. Midwest Ecology and Evolution Conference. Champaign-Urbana, IL

Quantitative Analysis of sterol in plants whose C8,7 isomerase has been eliminated. Josh Harkins, Ivy Chen, Keyan Salzman, Spencer Behmer and R. Grebenok. Ignation Day Presentation, Canisius College and presentation at Rochester Academy of Sciences (2015)

The Impact of Dietary Sterol Structure on Insect Development. Alexis Grebenok, Rebecca VanLaken, Angela Martin, Spencer Behmer and R. Grebenok. Ignation Day Presentation, Canisius College and presentation at the Rochester Academy of Sciences (2015)

The Physiological Function of Phloem Sterols in Higher Plants. Palka Sydney, Tubridy Alex, Turco George and R. Grebenok. Ignation Day Presentation, Canisius College (2014)


Giving Day is April 26th (see page below and link to our giving day page - you can use this link on Giving Day). Giving Day provides you an opportunity to donate to a specific program or activity in our Department (see programs listed below). The donations are used to further the programs and projects that are a huge part of the success that our students enjoy. Please donate if you feel you can assist us in moving forward - all levels of donation help our students achieve their dreams - Thanks for your support!

In addition, the Department is looking for ambassadors to donate to the Biology program and to use their social media accounts to challenge other Canisius Biology Alums to donate to their favorite program (Biology Ambassadors). Please contact Bob Grebenok at if you are interested in serving as a Giving Day ambassador for the Biology Department – Thank You!

Causes in the Biology Department supported by your gifts include:

Susan Aronica Fund for Student Research Travel – established to provide funds for students to travel to meetings to present the results of their research projects

Dr. John Kalb Memorial Fund – established for the purpose of furthering the Biology Departments educational goals

Biology Student Research Fund – established to provide funds to purchase supplies for students to work with Biology faculty on research projects that lead to presentation or publication

Ann Wright Fund for Mentoring Learning Program- established to support this outreach project begun by Dr. Wright in 2011 to promote STEM learning through inquiry-based experiments designed to engage elementary and middle school students. Canisius undergraduates develop and demonstrate scientific experiments for students in various Buffalo Public Schools and Community Centers, hoping to build a community of urban science learners.

Thank You to those who have donated in the past to support activities in our program

  • Adrian J. '73 and AnneMarie W. '75, PhD Block
  • Pasquale V. '71, MS '73, DDS and Joan Bochiechio
  • Marcy J. Bubar-Jordan '99, PhD and Jeffrey Jordan
  • Gaetano '66, MBA '84 and Mary Anne Candino
  • Constant Contact, Inc
  • David Holmes
  • Tracy Holmes
  • Robert J. Nowakowski '67
  • Lyndsey M. Pierson '12
  • Martha E. Stauffer
  • Andrea Z. Thiede
  • Lawrence Tassini
  • Dr. Gergory J. Castiglia, University at Buffalo Neurosurgery Inc.
  • Lindsay M. '06, DVM and Randy Vanvolkinburg
  • Ammar H. Alsalahi '13
  • Gaetano '66, MBA '84 and Mary Anne Candino
  • Marianne Frieri MA '70, MD
  • Dennis P. Heimback '53, MD
  • Janice L. Hoeltke Schifferli '01, DO
  • David Holmes
  • Lisa C. Kozlowski '84, MD
  • Robert J. Nowakowski '67
  • Martha E. Stauffer
  • Rachel L. Todtenhagen '00
  • Dr. Gergory J. Castiglia, University at Buffalo Neurosurgery Inc.
  • Donna A. Volpe '83, PhD
  • Mary P. Wright

In Memorium - Susan Aronica and Ann Wright

When Dr. Aronica died last February, she left a lasting mark on the biology department by her dedication to the department – students, faculty, staff, and curriculum. One of the relatively new faculty members commented that he hoped he was able to have half the impact over his career that Dr. Aronica had had on the department. Her impact is most obvious among the biology alumni who graduated in the last decade and who benefitted from her high standards, her advocacy for students, and her wicked sense of humor.

Dr. Aronica regularly taught in the introductory sequence (originally BIO101 and 102, and later in BIO112 and 211) as well as upper level courses in physiology, endocrinology, and cell biology. Her students often were heard muttering about her high-level expectations in the halls of Health Science, but were equally likely to be heard thanking her after taking the MCAT or after completing some of their medical school courses. She wanted to students to understand how systems worked and to think about how changes in a system would affect their function. Thus, she liked asking exam questions that disrupted one specific molecule and to have students discuss what results might be expected based on that change. While students were initially trepidatious about her courses and her reputation as a hard teacher and grader, they would hear from other students that Dr. Aronica truly cared about her students and would work to help them learn material.

Perhaps the most gratifying part of her job was mentoring students in her research lab. Her first research team was recruited during her first year at Canisius and it provided a model for a tight-knit, peer-mentoring model. She truly enjoyed research and loved seeing students learn how to ask and answer questions about how specific chemokines were affecting human health. While she was at Canisius, she published eight articles with a total of 19 different students, and five of the articles had one of her students as the lead author. She had an uncanny ability to have students work on independent projects that could be combined into publishable manuscripts. She always talked about papers in terms of the lead author – like Peter’s paper, Eric’s paper, Naz’s paper, or Kelly’s paper. She took great pride in the fact that her students were often mistaken for graduate students at the Endocrine Society conferences and were often recruited for post-doctoral positions as juniors or seniors at Canisius.

None of the descriptions thus far provide a clear idea of the colleague and friend that we lost last February. Susan was known for being gruff, tenacious, decisive, genuine, passionate, Sicilian, supportive, encouraging, accepting, loyal, intimidating, change-averse (a.k.a. the traditional use of the word “conservative”, which is a hoot to describe Susan), funny, wry, witty, hilarious, and impish. She could be a very forceful defender of the department and the biology students, but she had a great sense of humor. She once called a student in his dorm room when his classmates shared that he was sleeping in rather than attending her class. For many of the biology faculty, we miss her laugh that would echo down the hallway.

William Authur Ward wrote: “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” Dr. Aronica was a masterful teacher. She inspired her students, and she inspired her colleagues. The biology will try to continue to live up to her expectations for the college, the biology department, and most importantly for our students. We hope to inspire as many others as she did.

Dr. Ann Wright, Professor of Biology, passed away on August 6th, 2016, after a valiant battle with acute myeloid leukemia. For over twenty years, Dr. Wright shared her passion for teaching anatomy and physiology with countless students in her classes at Canisius College.

She worked diligently to improve student learning by creating active learning experiences which engaged her students in the teaching-learning process. Her efforts to create effective learning strategies in physiology classes resulted in numerous grants, published papers, and the honor of being named an American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology education fellow in 2015.

Dr, Wright espoused the Jesuit ideal of using one’s gifts for the service of others and the benefit of society through her outreach activities with primary and secondary schools. She dedicated much of her time to developing and overseeing the Mentor Learning Program (MRB), an after-school program for elementary and middle-school children in Buffalo Public School and Community Centers designed to generate an interest in science. Under the mentorship of Dr. Wright, Canisius College undergraduate students developed hands-on, inquiry-based “experiments” for students to perform. Anyone visiting the MRB would witness the excitement and enthusiasm of young “scientists” as they performed these experiments. Dr. Wright’s devotion to this program continued throughout her illness, as she mentored and advised undergraduates involved in the MRB during her hospitalization at the Roswell Park Cancer Institute. The Biology Department considers the MRB to be Dr. Wright’s legacy and we are dedicated to making sure this program continues. Please consider supporting this program by contributing to the program during the Annual Giving Day.

Dr. Wright will be greatly missed across campus for her kindness, her can-do attitude, and her willingness to volunteer for projects and committees. Her approach was always one of collegiality, with an intention to work hard. Colleagues from numerous departments and offices have expressed how unassuming and helpful she was on the projects she completed. We have lost a genuine, friendly colleague whose attitudes toward learning and toward service will continue to inspire us.

Honor Society

Beta Beta Beta (TriBeta)

TriBeta is an honor society for students, particularly undergraduates, dedicated to improving the understanding and appreciation of biological study and extending boundaries of human knowledge through scientific research. Since its national founding in 1922, more than 200,000 persons have been accepted into lifetime membership, and more than 670 chapters have been established throughout the United States and Puerto Rico, including the Canisius College, Alpha Theta chapter founded in 1941. Members of the Canisius chapter are inducted based on their commitment and involvement in the Biological sciences, society events, and community service. In addition, members also participate in fundraising events, such as our annual Variety Show, a campus wide talent show. Last year, the society raised over $1,500 to help improve the lives of orphans in Poland and in previous years the money has helped support Habitat for Humanity and medically underserved patients in Nicaragua. The society has a strong presence on the Canisius campus and within the Biology department where members continually work to promote both the college and society's missions.

TriBeta plays football against other Canisius College groups – seen here TriBeta playing against Chemistry majors involved with the American Chemical Society (ACS) in the fields adjacent to Lyons Hall (Faculty also participate).

Other clubs:

  • Society of Pre-Health Professionals
  • Women in Science
  • Grad Club
  • Colleges Against Cancer
  • Minorities in Science

Invitation to Visit

We welcome all visitors to our Department. If you are an Alumni who wants to see your old lab or a prospective student who wants to attend a class, please email or call Colleen O’hara at or 716-888-2550 to ensure that your needs are met – we look forward to seeing you.

Thanks and we look forward to seeing you!

Created by Vincent Bargnes ('17) and Robert Grebenok PhD


Created with images by ataribravo99 - "niagara falls waterfall" • akasped - "Clouds"

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