To honor the ethical culture and celebrate the hard work of faculty, staff and students, VSU hosted their annual Ethics Week during the week of Nov. 11.
The week included presentations and a featured guest speaker. These events are intended to bring awareness to ethics, recognize hard work of all employees, and promote the values of integrity, excellence, accountability and respect among the campus community.
One of the events, “snack and learn” even incorporated the new Virtual Reality Lab located in Odum Library. There were three tables that consisted of the VR equipment which portrayed topics about ethics.
Looking at the scenarios and videos through the VR equipment allowed attendees to get a different perspective of situations they may never experience themselves. These situations involved self-sacrifice, bias and decision making.
Heidi Cox, Director of Internal Audits and one of the hostesses for the event, said that this event was a fun and interesting way to teach students about ethics without having people lecture them.
¨With this event we wanted to introduce the VR lab and also help students actually experience some empathy in terms of different ethical dilemmas and how our choices and our actions really make a difference if we are intentional about our values,¨ she said.
The table that really allowed attendees to experience empathy was the table with the topic of bias. At this table people were able to see the perspective of both a woman and a man in corporate America.
During the demo, the woman was being underestimated and overlooked even though she was the head of the company. Many of the attendees were able to empathize and felt very offended, as if the situation was happening to them in real time.
Ethics Week not only affects students, it affects faculty and staff as well. Cox said that Ethics Week ensures that she leads by example.
“If we can plant a seed in anyone to help them realize that our values and our choices and our actions matter then that’s what makes us feel like we’ve done a good job,” Cox said.
SGA President Jacob Bell said that he hopes students take note of the significance of ethical behavior in our community.
“Ethics are really a framework for life, and during this week I hope we as students reflect on what that looks like for us,” Bell said.
Bell also gave examples as to how we can demonstrate ethics.
“As students, we can demonstrate ethical behavior through academic honesty. We can practice ethics in our jobs,” He said. “In the long run, being ethical pays off as employers and those around us take note of how we act and steward our resources.”
Written by Breannia Stillwell, Staff Writer. Photos Courtesy of Prexel.
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