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University of Arkansas at Little Rock

Ethics Team Qualifies for Nationals

A team of UALR philosophy students competing against squads from 15 universities in Texas, Oklahoma, and Arkansas has qualified for the National Ethics Bowl Competition in the spring.

“To succeed at Ethics Bowl you need to demonstrate to the judges high-level critical thinking and superior skills of argument and persuasion. This is a terrific success for the outstanding students and faculty in the department “said Keith Robinson, professor and chair of the UALR Philosophy and Interdisciplinary  Studies Department. The regional contest was held Oct. 17 and the national event will be on Feb. 28 at San Antonio.

The Ethics Bowl is a competitive tournament in which undergraduates have the opportunity to discuss complicated ethical issues. Some of the ethical questions discussed at the regional event included:

  • Whether businesses should offer paid maternity leave to employees.
  • The ethical status of street art – is it a public service or an act of vandalism?
  • The ethics of the academy: two topics (a) plagiarism and (b) whether student loans should be “forgiven.”
  • The ethical treatment of animals in scientific experiment.

The UALR team competed in round-robin debates against teams from Brazosport College, Oklahoma Christian University, and St. Mary’s University, the host team.

The 2012 UALR Ethics Bowl Team members are:

  • Rachel Horton of Little Rock, a senior liberal arts major.
  • Georgette Huyler of Little Rock, a senior with a philosophy major and psychology minor.
  • Angela Johnson of Little Rock, a junior with a double major of philosophy and psychology.
  • George Wilson of Mountain Pine, a freshman majoring in political science with a philosophy minor.

The team is trained and mentored by Drs. Allison Merrick and Roxy Green, both assistant professors of philosophy at UALR.