November 19, 2007
07-166

Kate Elliot
Communications Specialist

Two Senior Business Majors Place at National Conference

VALDOSTA - Langdale College of Business seniors, Natalie Carrier and Tajuanna Jones, placed as semifinalists at University of Arizona’s Fifth Annual Eller Ethics Case Competition on October 25 - 27 in Tucson, Ariz.

The competition presented students with an ethical dilemma they might face in future professional careers. Twenty two-person teams from universities across the nation each prepared a PowerPoint presentation and an executive summary that demonstrated how they would, as directors, resolve ethical disputes among stockholders and company management. Lawyers and chief executive officers of major national firms judged the presentations on delivery, the depth of analysis and the persuasiveness of recommendations that had to be both ethical and practical in a business context.

“Natalie and Tajuanna did an amazing job representing VSU and showcasing their command of the skills needed to advance in the business world today. The team even placed ahead of Ivy League schools,” said Dr. Donna Cunningham, associate professor of management at VSU and the team’s faculty advisor. “This type of competition helps prepare students for ethical situations they will face in the real world. They learn composure, how to formulate an argument and persuasive communication skills.”

This is the second year VSU has competed in the “E-tegrity” competition, which was formed to challenge students’ moral reasoning and to promote corporate social responsibility. Last year, VSU’s team of Brooks Pope and Prabh Hira presented their solution to the dilemma of whether a neighborhood bank should make mortgage loans to illegal immigrants.

Prior to 2006, the competition had been hosted for three years strictly for students of the University of Arizona’s Eller College of Management. The competition expanded nationally in 2005 amid the wake of highly publicized business scandals and reports of academic dishonesty. Business schools across the nation recognized the need to foster ideals of fair competition, transactional integrity and academic honesty.

The Valdosta State University team competed against teams from universities throughout the United States, including the University of Florida, University of Illinois, Pennsylvania State University, Case Western Reserve University, Rutgers University and Brigham Young University. The teams from BYU won the competition the past two years.

Langdale College of Business Dean Dr. Ralph Allen funded the teams’ participation in the competition both this year and in 2006.

For more information about the competition, go to http://ugrad.eller.arizona.edu/etegrity/competition/ .