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Union hosts Ethics Bowl Regional Saturday



Fourteen colleges and universities from the Northeast will come to campus Saturday for the regional competition of the Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl, a fierce intellectual matchup that requires months of preparation on a set of challenging questions.

Teams of students will debate 15 cases that address ethical dilemmas, ranging from attractiveness discrimination in hiring to the freedom to burn the Qur’an.

“Ethics Bowl presents fascinating cases,” said Mark Wunderlich, visiting assistant professor of philosophy and the team’s advisor. He also cited cases that examine the voting rights of college students, the treatment of endangered pink river dolphins in Brazil, raising children without gender roles and how bodies of the dead are treated.  

“Hosting the regional competition is an honor,” Wunderlich said. “It also means a lot to us because we get tremendous support from the entire campus community. Our students have been working impressively hard, and that support is essential.”

Union’s team members, and their majors, are: Pieter Boskin ’12 (biochemistry, philosophy), Bui Duy Thanh Mai ’12 (Asian studies, philosophy), Alana Curran ’14 (neuroscience), Samuel Fein ’12, (political science), Yaqi Gao ’15, Jordon Hastings ’13 (economics), Trevor Martin ’14 (philosophy), Melissa Moskowitz ’14 (political science)  Katherine Murray ’13 (psychology), Remy Ravitzka ’15, Daniel Roginski ’12 (math), Lea Tessitore ’12 (political science) and Ryan Vineyard ’12 (political science).

Union is one of 10 schools hosting Ethics Bowl competitions around the U.S. this fall.

Some 40 faculty, staff and members of the Schenectady community are volunteering their time to judge and moderate the matches.

Union’s young ethicists will square off in three rounds against teams from Buffalo State College, Colgate University, Dartmouth College, Franklin Pierce University, Husson University, Manhattan College, Marist College, Moravian College, Notre Dame of Maryland University, Stevens Institute of Technology, St. John’s University, the University at Buffalo and Villanova University.

The all-day event features opening remarks in Reamer Campus Center Auditorium at 7:45 a.m., followed by competing rounds in the Humanities Building and Lippman Hall.

The last round of competition is set for 5 p.m. in Humanities Room 115, concluding with the championship award presentation at 6:30 p.m.

The top-scoring 32 teams in the regional bowls will qualify to compete in the national championship at the annual meeting of the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics in Cincinnati in March.

For details on Saturday’s event, including a list of cases with abstracts, click here.