Ethics in the Workplace

Program Description (8 credits)

What’s the right thing to do when as an employee you witness illegal actions?  Whose interests should take priority in pricing and hiring decisions? What choices can you make when your supervisor tells you to ignore company policy?  Employees sometimes face situations such as these that suggest a conflict between being a good employee and being a good person.  We will study several approaches to ethical decision making and, through intensive writing and seminar discussions, use these approaches to clarify issues faced at work.  The shared vocabulary and frameworks we develop will allow us to talk and think about ethical issues and write and share personal workplace ethical statements.  Program work will also include reading several Washington State laws related to ethics and exploring issues, choice points, and the roles of moral reasoning and moral leadership at work.

The program will meet on Wednesdays in conjunction with the course Thinking It Through.  We will meet additionally as a program on five Saturdays to deepen our understanding of ethical issues through writing, role-playing, playing and analyzing board games as framing ethical strategies, and other hands-on activities.  In addition, we will focus part of each Saturday meeting on building and strengthening strong college-level writing skills to prepare students for more advanced work.

Credit will be awarded in philosophy (ethics) and ethical decision making.

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