For the past three years, Xavier University has sent a five-person team to the Regional Ethics Bowl, Central States in Indianapolis. On Saturday, November 12, the team qualified for the first time in the school's history for the National Ethics Bowl, placing second out of 22 teams.
The students prepared for six weeks before the competition, with each student taking charge of at least 3 of the 15 ethical case studies, all dealing with contemporary ethical dilemmas that have appeared in news outlets over the past year.
“The shared background of solid training in ethics from Xavier’s Philosophy Department allowed this team to flourish where others floundered,” said advisor Dan Dwyer.
Team members are:
22003 (Annandale, VA) Phil Chevalier, senior philosophy major, Captain, third year on Ethics Bowl team
46077 (Zionsville, IN) Chris Dobbs, junior biology and philosophy major, second year on Ethics Bowl team
02857 (Scituate, RI) Rory McGuire-Krueger, sophomore, philosophy major
44133 (North Royalton, OH) Patrick McBride, senior Honors Bachelor of Arts program and philosophy major
46227 (Indianapolis, IN) Eamon Roach, senior philosophy and biology double major
"It is exciting after three years to move on to Nationals,” says Chevalier. “Ethics is central to discussions that seem to be shaping the direction of America and of universities, so I'm glad Xavier has recognized that and sent an Ethics Bowl team."
The National Ethics Bowl will take place March 1, 2012 in Cincinnati at the Netherland Hilton, as part of the meeting of the Association of Practical and Professional Ethics. In the IEB, each team receives a set of cases which raise issues in practical and professional ethics in advance of the competition and prepare an analysis of each. At the competition, a moderator poses questions, based on a case taken from that set, to the team. Questions may concern ethical problems on wide ranging topics, such as the classroom (e.g. cheating or plagiarism), personal relationships (e.g. dating or friendship), professional ethics (e.g. engineering, law, medicine), or social and political ethics (e.g. free speech, gun control, etc.) A panel of judges may probe the teams for further justifications and evaluates answers. Rating criteria are intelligibility, focus on ethically relevant considerations, avoidance of ethical irrelevance, and deliberative thoughtfulness.