Lectures focus on ethics

College of Business brings 6 speakers to campus for series.

Top business professionals from Indiana will speak at Ball State in a 2002-2003 lecture series designed to help students dissect how business ethics impact their lives.

The series, "Putting the 'i' Back into Ethics," is sponsored by the College of Business and will feature the first of six speakers today at 4 p.m. in Whitinger Business Building, Room 144.

Today's speaker, Gerry Dick, is the president of Grow Indiana Media Ventures and the host of "Inside Indiana Business with Gerry Dick," Indiana's most watched business program.

Dick's company also heads an Internet site and radio program on business. In addition, Dick has received an Emmy nomination for a 1993 series he contributed to about Indiana companies doing business along the United States-Mexico border.

"The purpose of the speaker series is to give students access to business leaders in the community, discuss a current business issue and give students information about career opportunities in Indiana," said Tamara Estep, director of external relations for the College of Business. Estep is also responsible for coordinating the lecture series.

"We have assembled a group of business professionals to help students detangle, dissect and debate what ethics means to them on an individual basis."

Mike Goldsby, assistant professor for the department of marketing and management, said there is an increased focus on business ethics today in light of recent events such as Enron and the controversy surrounding Martha Stewart.

"Scandals such as Enron remind people of the importance of business ethics," Goldsby said. "These (examples) serve a good purpose in pointing out the weaknesses in our market system and correcting them."

Estep said - after all the corporate scandals - it is more important for students to understand that everyone in the industry will face ethical issues to contend with while on the job.

"It's encouraging to meet with students who are interested in ethical issues of the day," said Goldsby, who will also teach a business ethics class next semester. "This series provides students with a context within which to put the advice and lessons we professors tell them in class."

Goldsby encourages students to take advantage of the lecture series.

"The speaker series is an excellent opportunity for students to hear from people facing the pressures of competitive survival (who will) tell their stories and give evidence that good ethics is good business," he said.

The series, funded by a grant through the university from Lilly Endowment, Inc., is free and open to the public.

Future speakers this semester will include John Harris, a retired chief executive officer of Olive LLP, a regional certified public accountant agency and tax advisory firm in Indianapolis, on Oct. 23. and Anthony Schneider, managing director of Schneider, Huse and Associates, an Indianapolis-based corporate finance advisory firm, on Nov. 18.


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