By Deanna Howes Spiro, Director of Communications, AJCU
How is the Jesuit mission reflected in today’s undergraduate and graduate business programs? This issue of Connections focuses on seven Jesuit colleges and universities incorporating justice themes into their curricula; opening new centers for ethics; leading faculty seminars on Ignatian readings; and much more. It is an exciting time for Jesuit business education, and we are thrilled to share the stories of these schools with you.
This month’s issue coincides with the annual meeting of the AJCU Business Deans, hosted this week by Fordham University. Coincidentally, a recent article in The Financial Times cites St. Ignatius of Loyola as a model for modern day management! Georgetown University’s new dean of the McDonough School of Business, Dr. Paul Almeida, cited Ignatius’ entrepreneurial spirit, well-articulated purpose and mission, and global perspective as key to successful business leadership from the 15th through 21st centuries. He wrote:
Indeed, St. Ignatius was the inspiration for another author, Chris Lowney, whose books and articles have guided business students and leaders for more than a decade. A former Jesuit seminarian and JP Morgan executive, Lowney based his best-selling book, Heroic Leadership, on the principles that guided St. Ignatius to found the Society of Jesus and shape it into an organization that is still thriving nearly five centuries later. Of course, it is worth noting that Pope Francis, a Jesuit himself, has been cited by both Lowney and Almeida as a global leader heavily influenced by his Jesuit values and training.
As technology and globalization continue to evolve and influence business programs, one constant is the influence of St. Ignatius in today’s Jesuit-educated business students and leaders. We hope that they will continue to be inspired by their institutions’ shared mission and help it to thrive for the next five centuries.
By Cynthia Littlefield, Vice President for Federal Relations, AJCU
20th Annual AJCU Federal Relations Conference
The Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) hosted the 20th annual AJCU Federal Relations conference from October 3 – 4 on Capitol Hill. The conference was well-attended, with 37 representatives from Jesuit colleges and universities. This year’s conference focused on student financial aid, with a particular emphasis on the Perkins loan program, and updates related to the Dream Act and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
The conference opened with Perkins advocates Representatives Elise Stefanik (R-NY) and Mark Pocan (D-WI), who reiterated their support for Perkins loans, in spite of the undergraduate program’s recent expiration on September 30. Their goal over the next three months will be to assure an extension of Perkins reauthorization. As of this writing, 237 Members of Congress have signed the Perkins support letter, including 45 Republicans.
The conference proceeded with a panel on the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA), led by key higher education staff: Robert Moran, Majority, Senate HELP Committee; Bryce McKibben, Minority, Senate HELP Committee; Amy Jones, Majority, House Education & Workforce Committee; and Christian Haynes, Ranking, House Education & Workforce Committee.
While the panel discussion on campus-based aid generated some partisan disagreement regarding which programs to reserve, all House staff reiterated Chairwoman Foxx’s desire to have legislative language by the end of this year. There was also general consensus that reconciliation discussions for House staff regarding the potential $20 billion cut to education, primarily higher education loans, is now moot given the House leadership’s desire to move forward on the budget and go directly to taxes.
Following the discussion on campus-based aid, Joseph Zogby, Minority Chief Counsel for the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Border Security and Immigration, briefed conference attendees on the Dream Act and DACA. Stephanie Gold, a partner with Hogan Lovells, LLP, followed Zogby’s brief with her own presentation on the higher education implications of Title IX, Gainful Employment, and other legal issues.
AJCU Congressional Breakfast
On Thursday, October 5, AJCU presidents and Federal Relations representatives joined 28 members of Congress (many of whom are alumni of Jesuit institutions), for a Congressional breakfast at the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center. The focus of this year’s breakfast was on the Dream Act, DACA, and general concerns surrounding student financial aid. Two Georgetown University students, one of whom benefits from the DACA program, discussed the current climate on campus due to students’ fears of being deported. The attendees were stirred by his testimony, as well as that of his classmate, who shared his appreciation for the Federal financial aid programs that have made it possible for him to attend college.
Toward the end of the breakfast, Representative Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) addressed the group on the FY18 budget, which was being debated on the House Floor that day. Representatives Mark DeSaulnier (D-CA) and Juan Vargas (D-CA) also spoke briefly about the founding of the Congressional Friends of Jesuit Colleges and Universities Caucus. Finally, Representative Bobby Scott (D-VA), Ranking, House Education & Workforce Committee, spoke on higher education priorities in the upcoming HEA Reauthorization. With nearly 100 guests in attendance, the breakfast was a great success; click here for a full photo gallery.
AJCU will continue to advocate for an extension of the undergraduate Perkins loan program in the fall and winter months ahead. The preservation of DACA protections and the passage of the Dream Act also remain high priorities. Looking ahead to 2018, taxes and the budget will be central to securing the funding and reforms necessary to preserve funding for higher education.
By Alan Miciak, Ph.D., Dean, John M. and Mary Jo Boler School of Business, John Carroll University
Business is a career and a calling. It is the Ignatian heart of the Jesuit business school. The John M. and Mary Jo Boler School of Business at John Carroll University embraces our mission of education for leadership and service in the Jesuit tradition. It inspires our vision to graduate students who live inspired lives.
The challenges facing business and business education today are complex, and we find ourselves in continuously evolving surroundings and conditions; in essence, the “ground rules” are changing. Competing priorities such as resource depletion, technological displacement, governmental regulations, community obligations, employee relations, climate change, and global competition all impact the bottom line. More than ever, a company’s success depends on leaders throughout the organization who understand how to navigate, persuade, and inspire its many stakeholders to influence change. At the Boler School of Business, we come together as classmates, friends, teachers, and mentors to answer an important question: What am I doing with my life? The call to live inspired—or Magis (the greater good), as the Jesuits would say—takes on a central and defining role here.
Taking the Long View
The next generation of business leaders must integrate business decisions within the broader environmental, societal, and ethical context in which today’s businesses find themselves. While this added complexity presents some significant challenges for educators and students alike, there has never been a more exciting time to be part of the global Jesuit network of higher education. A great business education starts and ends with a foundation in liberal arts and sciences. We soundly reject the notion that it must be one or the other, and insist on competency and mastery that is the hallmark of the Jesuit educational tradition.
Historically, American business has demonstrated an unrivaled capacity to innovate and compete, while raising the bar on environment, health, and safety practices. It is time for business to regain the ethical and intellectual high ground by going beyond its legal and regulatory obligations. The growing body of evidence that socially and environmentally responsible business practices create long-term value is compelling. The market will increasingly demand and reward this behavior. Boler is governed by this thinking, and these are the principles that frame our academic, research and community outreach programs.
As leaders of Jesuit business schools, we cannot hesitate to lean into our core values without fear of alienating business and political establishments. We need not be apologists for our system of capitalism, but at the same time, we are called to a higher level of responsibility informed by our Jesuit, Catholic heritage. I favor viewing our role as the educators of responsible capitalists. Imagine the shared value creation and game-changing assets that could be developed in the pursuit of social, environmental and economic justice. Jesuit business schools have the chance to play an outsized role in the move toward responsible business leadership and community stewardship devoted to regional growth, prosperity and service.
Geared for Growth
Outstanding academic programs are the centerpiece of our strategy. From the beginning, our Accountancy program has set the standard for reputational excellence. Since our founding in 1934, Boler’s focus has been on innovative programs that are regionally relevant, while navigating the increasing demands of the globalizing economy. We have integrated business program innovation, advances in socially responsible management, liberal arts education, strong corporate partnerships, and bedrock Ignatian values to position Boler as the region’s conduit to a sustainable future for Northeastern Ohio and adjacent markets.
If you are mechanically inclined, you may know that large gears are designed for speed and small gears for strength. Boler is powered by our Ignatian heart, liberal arts foundation, and amazing alumni who helped to define Cleveland as a 20th century industrial powerhouse and are now redefining leadership in the 21st century.
The Boler Impact
Boler alumni are leading organizational efforts nationally and internationally, ranging from Fortune 500 companies employing thousands of people, to non-profit NGO’s that are improving the lives of people all over the world.
Furthermore, the commitment of Boler students, faculty and staff to serve the community spans the Greater Cleveland region and across the globe. Our local efforts support food banks, shelters and urban gardens. In addition, our Accountancy program sponsors a free tax preparation program (VITA) for low-income individuals.
We want our graduates to succeed in their careers, fulfilling their dreams and ambitions. But professional milestones, however plentiful or notable, will never fully satisfy or define a Boler alumnus. Talk to a Boler graduate five, seven or ten years into their career—as an accountant, financial analyst, operations researcher or brand manager—and they will describe in detail the difference between simply pursuing a career and crafting a well-lived life.
Click here to learn more about Alan Miciak, Ph.D., Dean of the John M. and Mary Jo Boler School of Business at John Carroll University.
By Molly McCarthy, Writer-Editor, Le Moyne College
In the spring of 2010, the Very Rev. Adolfo Nicolás, S.J., former Superior General of the Society of Jesus, gathered with the presidents of Jesuit colleges and universities from around the world at Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City. Fr. Nicolás urged them to strengthen the already rich network that has come to characterize Jesuit education – one steeped in nearly 500 years of faith and service – in order to better prepare their students to embrace the myriad challenges and opportunities of the 21st century. It was a call for collaboration, as well as for bold ideas and visionary leadership, at a moment in history when both were urgently needed.
As Fr. Nicolás addressed those leaders in Mexico, some 2,600 miles to the north, the faculty and administrators in what is now the Madden School of Business at Le Moyne College were asking themselves a similar question: In the wake of the Great Recession and multiple serious, well-publicized ethical breaches at some of the world’s most renowned companies, how could they best prepare their students to be reflective, ethical leaders, men and women as concerned about values as growing a company’s value? It was a subject that was debated often, during meetings and in hallways, in large, structured groups and informal, one-on-one conversations.
The answer they came to was this: They would cultivate those individuals by leveraging the intellectual capacity, moral authority, and rich history of the world’s nearly 200 Jesuit institutions of higher education, just as Fr. Nicolás challenged those present at Universidad Iberoamericana to do. They envisioned the creation of an online repository of business cases, distinct from any that had ever been used before. Written by executives, entrepreneurs and educators from around the world, the cases in this series would emphasize a holistic, values-centered approach to leadership inspired by the Ignatian principles of discernment, justice, compassion and adaptability; they would reflect the Jesuit commitment to lifelong learning, and would be easily accessible to faculty and students at Jesuit colleges and universities around the world.
Fewer than three months after Fr. Nicolás’ address in Mexico City, Daniel Orne, Ph.D., now an emeritus faculty member in Le Moyne’s Madden School, presented his idea of a Global Jesuit Case Series (GJCS) during an annual meeting of the Colleagues in Jesuit Business Education at Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI. The response was immediate and enthusiastic. The faculty at the Madden School soon realized that their peers at other Jesuit institutions of higher education were as hungry as they were for a series of case studies centered on the values and ideals espoused by St. Ignatius Loyola, including moral leadership, social responsibility, and a commitment to sustainability.
The GJCS was formally launched in 2015 with the singular goal of establishing a series of real-world business cases, written by executives, educators and entrepreneurs whose work would place people and planet on equal footing with profit. In the nearly three years since its inception, the GJCS is well on its way to achieving that aim. Its leaders have hired a dedicated staff, built a website, and created pilot cases – all designed to develop compassionate leaders who embrace diversity and globalization.
“What is most distinctive about the GJCS, and what made it such a wonderful project to undertake, is that it investigates the impact of business decisions not just from the perspective of a chief executive officer or shareholder, but of employees, communities, vendors and even competitors,” said Tracy Couto, director of the GJCS. “This approach reinforces the link between prospering businesses and healthy communities. Not only is the GJCS a useful tool for students and faculty members, but it also serves as a conduit for business and social innovation as it contributes to the body of knowledge of what works in business and why, and how different approaches impact individuals, organizations, and society as a whole.”
The faculty members and administrators of the Madden School have continued to build the capacity of the GJCS, raising millions for this initiative, hiring dedicated staff, building a website, creating an advisory board, and developing a companion print publication, The Inner Compass: A Business Magazine with a Social Conscience. They have collaborated with outstanding institutions – including Boston College, Georgetown University and Saint Louis University nationally, and ESADE in Barcelona, Spain, UNISINOS in São Leopoldo, Brazil, and Saint Aloysius University of Mangalore, India, internationally – in creating editorial policies, content and pilot cases for the series. The cases address an array of issues, including moral leadership, ethics, sustainability, and author and leadership consultant Chris Lowney’s four pillars of heroic leadership – self-awareness, heroism, ingenuity and love.
Most recently, the GJCS also established two new collaborations. The first is with the Society for Case Research (SCR). Established in 1978, the SCR facilitates the exchange of ideas leading to the improvement of case research, writing and teaching. The organization publishes three scholarly journals – Business Case Journal, Journal of Case Studies and Journal of Critical Incidents – each of which features original cases designed to be used in the classroom. SCR staff members work with authors on every element of developing a case, including the narrative structure, teaching note, learning outcomes and theory. The second collaboration is with Real Time Cases, which creates video-based case studies that bridge the gap between the classroom and the real world.
“I am proud of the work we have done to develop business cases that broaden the conversation, emphasizing humanity while concurrently fostering innovation and profitability,” said Couto. “Too often in today’s society, we lose sight of the fact that business exists for the benefit of society, not the other way around. These cases are a direct response to that disturbing trend.”
By Natalie Drdek, Communications Manager, Loyola Marymount University College of Business Administration
From conserving water and expanding solar power, to incorporating environmental and social decision-making into investment decisions, Loyola Marymount University’s (LMU) commitment to ethical leadership, sustainability and social responsibility is well documented.
And now, this fall, LMU’s College of Business Administration will launch the Institute for Business Ethics and Sustainability (IBES) – further bolstering the University’s dedication to these guiding principles.
“This institute was founded to advance student learning, academic research and stakeholder engagement in ethics and sustainability for the 21st century organization,” said Jeff Thies, director of IBES and an assistant professor of management. “Because of its impact and power, business has a vital role to serve and advance human flourishing.”
Over the years, LMU and the College of Business Administration have achieved a critical mass of scholars, activities and educational programs centered on ethics, sustainability and values. This new institute exemplifies how the Jesuit mission of academic excellence, service, leadership and caring for the whole person continues to be incorporated into LMU’s business programs.
IBES will bring business leaders, scholars and community members together to enhance student learning, business success and community partnership. The Institute creates a center of excellence by building upon the successes of existing centers (Center for Accounting Ethics, Governance, and the Public Interest and Center for Ethics and Business) – and adding new programs and initiatives into a combined and coordinated effort to study and affect important issues facing our society.
The Institute serves as a place to share ideas, host activities and events, and educate LMU and the general public on ethical and sustainable business practices. It seeks to create strong links between the College of Business Administration and other like-minded centers at LMU, as well as other universities and the broader business community.
“The Institute for Business Ethics and Sustainability will be a game changer for LMU,” said Dennis Draper, dean of LMU’s College of Business Administration. “Our college is in a unique position to continue to build upon industry connections in Silicon Beach, expand our business ethics and sustainability curriculum, and educate students, faculty, alumni and the local community on the latest developments in these three key areas of study.”
Several undergraduate and graduate courses related to business ethics and sustainability are already in place in the College of Business Administration. With the help of advisory committees, the Institute will continue to identify and develop courses that will educate and shape the perspectives of our students as they prepare to enter the workforce.
The Institute will also feature several signature events to advance student engagement and educate the greater community in the study of ethics and sustainability. One event is the Dreier Chair in Accounting Ethics Distinguished Speaker Series, which brings prominent individuals to campus each semester to speak about topics related to accounting ethics, governance, and the public interest. In September, Steven Burdick, executive vice president and CFO of Tetra Tech, spoke on the timely topic of “Environmental, Social and Governance Challenges and Opportunities.”
Another event is the International Business Ethics Case Competition (IBECC), in which student teams from all over the world tackle some of the most pressing ethical issues in global business today. IBECC culminates months of research and discussion about the legal, financial and ethical dimensions of a business ethics problem. During the competition, students propose a solution that must work on all three counts – and meet the satisfaction of a panel of business executives and faculty judges. LMU hosts its own competition to select an undergraduate and graduate team for the international competition.
“Students really benefit from this experience of applying ethical analysis to important business issues and presenting their conclusions before a business audience,” said Thies.
IBECC is the nation’s oldest and most prestigious event of its kind. It was founded by Thomas White, LMU’s Hilton Chair of Business Ethics, who believes that an ethics event should do more than just talk about making the world a better place. The event is sponsored by IBES, the Opus College of Business at the University of St. Thomas (Minnesota), the W. Michael Hoffman Center for Business Ethics at Bentley University (Massachusetts) and the Ethics and Compliance Initiative.
Looking ahead, IBES has other exciting new initiatives in the planning stage such as launching additional speaker series, creating an annual Ethics and Sustainability Symposium, expanding business leader and scholar advisory networks, and implementing additional research initiatives and student engagement programs through industry and community partnerships.
Contributed by Marquette University’s Office of Marketing and Communication
Alyssa Stokx, a student in Marquette University’s Graduate School of Management, remembers long nights that blurred into early mornings spent hunting for signs of fraud in a Milwaukee restaurant’s files and ledgers.
Stokx was working for the University’s Justice for Fraud Victims Project, which turns real-world investigations of potential fraud into valuable learning experiences.
This is experiential learning, and it is something that Marquette integrates into its curriculum with the Jesuit emphases of empathy, diversity and justice. It’s such a priority that Brian Till, Marquette’s James H. Keyes Dean of Business Administration, is offering mini-grants to faculty members who restructure their classes in a way that encourages their students to learn by doing.
“Experiential learning deepens the extent of the students’ knowledge of the concepts,” Till says. “It’s fundamental to the overall direction of the College.”
Stokx and several accounting students partnered with a professional fraud examiner, the Milwaukee Police Department, the District Attorney’s office, and a small local business in need, to conduct an investigation.
Dr. Jodi Gissel, the assistant professor of accounting who brought the program to Marquette, is passionate about the ways that students use skills and know-how acquired in the College to live out the Jesuit value of being men and women for and with others.
The local businesses that became project partners are too small to afford a private fraud investigation, and Milwaukee police often don’t have the resources to investigate these kinds of cases in-depth.
Their investigation complete, Stokx and her classmates presented their findings of fraud to the restaurant owners, along with recommended steps to help them prevent similar instances of potential fraud in the future.
This time, those recommendations amounted to a crash course in segregation of duties — the best practices relating to who manages different aspects of a company’s finances. The students’ findings were also turned over to the DA’s office, which investigated them further to determine if criminal charges were warranted.
“It was really cool, but there also was a lot of pressure,” Stokx says. “If we didn’t do what we needed to, that would affect the business as well. There was more of a sense of responsibility on us. We had to step up.”
Fortunately, many faculty members are big believers in this kind of learning, and already invested in building thoughtful partnerships that yield opportunities for their students to apply what they’re learning. Here are some other examples.
Marquette senior Charlie Murphy walked into the first day of his branding course with Dr. Felicia Miller, chair and associate professor of marketing, expecting to receive his course syllabus, hear a little bit about the class and be on his merry way.
Instead, he watched a clip of his professor on the local news explaining what the class’s project would be for the semester: partnering with the Village of Brown Deer, a northern suburb of Milwaukee, WI, to develop a new brand identity to help the community attract new residents.
“I want my students to get an appreciation for the world outside the Marquette bubble, or whatever bubble they were living in before that,” Miller says. “I try to push them regardless of race, creed or color, to get outside of whatever that bubble is and see the rest of the world.”
The class analyzed findings from focus groups previously conducted by the village, census figures, state of Wisconsin crime data, and other primary and secondary sources to conduct a brand audit and marketing plan. They identified that the village — one of the few racially integrated suburbs in the highly segregated Milwaukee region — needed to fully embrace its diversity in order to have the most accurate and inclusive brand identity.
The student team offered suggestions to the city for how to go about making that happen. Miller then compiled the work into one 35-page document that was presented to the Village of Brown Deer Board of Trustees.
“They gave us free reign,” Murphy says. “[Brown Deer] is a great place to live, and that’s supported by facts.”
Murphy credits Miller’s class with helping him realize that he wants a career in which he can see tangible impacts of the work he does, ideally in ways that improve people’s lives.
“It wasn’t just for the grade,” Murphy says. “We did the project for the community and that just made more sense. I wanted to do well for the people in Brown Deer.”
The door of Dr. Alex Milovic’s office flings open as he announces to anyone in earshot, “She just got a job!” pointing to a girl standing behind his shoulder.
Such informal career-planning meetings — celebratory or not —are a regular occurrence for the director of Marquette’s sales program and adjunct assistant professor of marketing, someone who students describe as an advocate for their interests, futures and general well-being. “He likes to see everyone succeed,” says Thomas Madaras, a junior in Marquette’s College of Business Administration.
When he arrived at Marquette in 2014, to develop the College’s sales program, Milovic set out to show that sales is more than the stereotype of the pushy salesperson working a used-car lot. “I want my students to learn that selling is helping others,” Milovic says. “Empathy is becoming the first word that people associate with sales.”
Companies are begging for college graduates to fill high-paying sales positions, he adds. “Not only is [sales] lucrative; it’s really fun,” Madaras says. Milovic served as his mentor and exposed him to a whole new side of sales that made him want to pursue it as a career.
Milovic introduced Madaras to the field by getting him a job. As part of their course work for his second-level sales course, Milovic’s students were paid to participate in an eight-week sales internship, selling tickets for the Milwaukee Bucks or the Marquette Golden Eagles, or coffee for Buena Vida Coffee.
After his experience in Milovic’s class, Madaras landed himself a sales internship for this summer. And, as expected, Milovic was the first one there to congratulate him.
By Colleen Sabatino, Director of Digital Content, Saint Joseph’s University
In his 2013 apostolic exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium (“The Joy of the Gospel”), Pope Francis called for an examination of the purpose of business and a prioritization of the common good. Though academic and business communities have been making such appeals since the modern business ethics movement began in the late 1970s, there is, according to John McCall, Ph.D., director of the Pedro Arrupe, S.J. Center for Business Ethics at Saint Joseph’s University, still much work to be done.
“Over the years, episodes of scandal have increased awareness of the need for business ethics education,” says McCall, a professor of management and philosophy who holds the John McShain Chair in Ethics.
To answer Pope Francis’ call, many believe that the first step lies with rethinking business education. Since its founding in 2005, the Pedro Arrupe, S.J. Center for Business Ethics in the Erivan K. Haub School of Business (HSB) has been helping Saint Joseph’s to set the example.
“Jesuit business schools are uniquely positioned to lead reform by challenging the standard assumptions of business education and living up to the principles and values espoused in their mission statements,” wrote McCall and Stephen Porth, Ph.D. ’80, professor of management and senior editor of the Journal of Jesuit Business Education, in a summer 2015 article in the same journal. “We must prepare our students to think differently about the nature and purpose of business and to face the ethical and moral challenges of today’s business environment.”
The vision and generosity of Saint Joseph’s alumnus Frank Trainer ’68 challenged the Haub School to develop a center for business ethics. Named in honor of the 28th Superior General of the Society of Jesus, Rev. Pedro Arrupe, S.J. (whose commitment to social justice was unyielding), Trainer intended that the Center would provide students with consistent exposure to ethics discussions in the curriculum and beyond.
“If we can get students to begin thinking about the ethical perspective of real-life business decisions in college and graduate school, then perhaps they will continue to do so in their business careers,” says Trainer.
His hope, shared by Joseph A. DiAngelo Jr., Ed.D. ’70, HSB dean, was for Saint Joseph’s graduates to enter their careers as principled leaders striving to make a positive impact in their communities, workplaces and the world.
Trainer’s challenge has not only been met, it’s been exceeded.
In 2010, just five years into the Center’s existence, HSB (the largest U.S. Jesuit business school) was ranked No. 12 in student exposure to ethics by the Aspen Institute’s global survey of business programs. Two years later, external consultants and renowned business ethicists Norman Bowie, Ph.D. and Joseph DesJardins, Ph.D. completed an external review of the Arrupe Center in which they stated, “In our experiences, few schools have been able to truly embed ethics into the culture of a business school. Discussions of ethics have truly become a part of the culture of HSB.”
Two consecutive AACSB (Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business) accreditation summaries (2010, 2015) concurred, citing the Center as one of the “crown jewels” of the Haub School.
“The Arrupe Center has been immensely successful in realizing Frank’s vision over the past decade,” says DiAngelo. “Not only have HSB’s culture and curriculum been strengthened, but our faculty and students are more cognizant of our mission and eager to contribute to the common good.”
The Center sponsors ethics-focused programming and student competitions and inspired the formation of the Saint Joseph’s student chapter of Net Impact. It was also instrumental in the creation of the Leadership, Ethics and Organizational Sustainability (LEO) major/minor and in making improvements to each department’s course curricula. In 2014, HSB courses earned honorable mention from the Dr. Alfred N. and Lynn Manos Page Prize for Sustainability Issues in Curricula competition.
“Almost every class I took in the business school, whether for my major or not, discussed ethics and ethical practices within the business world,” says LEO alumna and former Net Impact leader Danielle Myers ’13. Now a sustainability and human resource manager for R World Energy Solutions, she says that exposure to ethics and sustainability at Saint Joseph’s influenced her career aspirations.
The heart of the Center’s activity is its leadership. Director McCall has a dual appointment in the College of Arts and Sciences (philosophy) and the Haub School (management) that demonstrates the far-reaching nature of the Center and the University’s distinctive business education model.
Helping to lead the Center’s growth and empowering its unique model for faculty training is associate director David Steingard, Ph.D., associate professor of management. He says, “The Jesuit educational platform and basis in moral philosophy distinguishes Arrupe from other ethics centers.”
To date, more than two-thirds of the tenured or tenure-track business faculty have received one or more Arrupe Faculty Fellowships, which are awarded for research, teaching and professional development. Nearly one-third have participated in an Ethics Across the Curriculum seminar, an intense six-week boot camp for faculty in both HSB and the College of Arts and Sciences, who wish to include or enhance ethics-based content within their courses.
The program has resulted in over 70 publications, 30 conference presentations, numerous research and faculty awards, and the development of over 50 new courses or course modules.
“The most effective way to change the culture of a business school and develop faculty is to provide opportunities to integrate ethics into the curriculum,” says Steingard. “We’re helping faculty put HSB values into action as a direct way to demonstrate who we are and what we represent as a Jesuit business school.”
An earlier version of this article appeared in Haub School Review.
By Joseph G. Eisenhauer, Dean, University of Detroit Mercy College of Business Administration
It is impossible to walk through the University of Detroit Mercy’s Commerce & Finance Building (C&F), home to the College of Business Administration, without noticing signs of faith: the St. Ignatius Chapel, where Mass is celebrated twice daily, stands across the hall from the main entrance. Just outside the chapel, a glass-enclosed cabinet features bronze busts of St. Ignatius of Loyola and Venerable Catherine McAuley (respective founders of the Society of Jesus and Sisters of Mercy), gifts from alumni in honor of the College’s 100th anniversary last year. And inside each classroom, including the high-tech Financial Markets Lab, a crucifix is prominently displayed on the wall.
These tangible signs of faith help to create an atmosphere conducive to spiritual reflection and consideration of the greater good. But the College’s Catholic identity goes far beyond the physical environment. It is evident in the mission statement, which emphasizes the Jesuit and Mercy traditions of our founders, service to society, and spiritual, ethical, and social growth — as well as academic excellence.
In addition to highlighting the mission statement on every syllabus, the College sponsors a half-day retreat each year, giving students an opportunity to reflect deeply on the purpose of their education. At the heart of the mission statement is the phrase, “competence, compassion and conscience.” These three simple words motivate all that the College does, including research, teaching and community engagement.
In another display case, down the corridor from the St. Ignatius Chapel, recent publications from Detroit Mercy business faculty are on exhibit. Many of these articles, such as “Pope Francis and the United Nations: Planet Partners,” are explicitly mission-oriented.
But a closer look reveals something equally important: several of these articles include students as co-authors along with faculty. For example, Dhruv Patel, a business major from Zimbabwe, who served as president of the student government last year and plans to pursue a career in law, published “Benefit Corporations: Fostering Socially Conscious Corporate Leadership” in the Southern Journal of Business and Ethics with his Business Law professor, Evan Peterson. The pair, joined by J.D. / MBA student Joni Hyska, also published “Human Rights Law, Corporate Governance and Globalization” in the Journal of Law, Business and Ethics. By working with faculty on such projects, students not only enrich their research skills and resumes, they participate in a continuous dialogue on social responsibility undertaken by professional scholars and practitioners.
Pass by his classroom on Monday evening or Thursday afternoon, and Rev. Gerald Cavanagh, S.J. can be seen teaching a business ethics class. A pioneer in his field, Fr. Cavanagh pushes students to exercise their consciences by critically applying values to current business issues.
But the required business ethics course is merely a starting point; ethical considerations and case studies are integrated throughout the entire Detroit Mercy business curriculum, right down to the capstone course on strategic management. This continually reinforces the notion that businesses exist to enhance the lives of customers and workers, and that adherence to ethical standards is crucial for that purpose.
To further promote that idea, for one week each spring, the College welcomes back alumni as guest lecturers. Among the entrepreneurs and executives who have donated their time and talent to this effort are corporate social responsibility experts like Eric Hespenheide ’75, Chairman of the Global Sustainability Standards Board, and Jean-Paul Meutcheho ’98, Director of Sustainability at Global Advanced Metals. By engaging with socially-conscious professionals, students develop even greater competence in their academic disciplines, deepen their appreciation of ethics, and build a stronger sense of compassion.
Additional evidence of competence, compassion and conscience abounds in the C&F Building. On the first floor, framed portraits in the Hall of Honor immortalize business leaders who achieved success while demonstrating social responsibility — role models of men and women for others, there to inspire the next generation of business leaders.
On the second floor are the offices of Rev. Phil Cooke, S.J. and Derrin Leppek, co-directors of the College’s Center for Social Entrepreneurship, which provides business training for new ventures designed to have a positive impact on the local community.
And on Saturdays each winter, a computer lab serves as a venue where neighborhood residents receive free income tax assistance from Accounting students.
Other students engage in service learning off campus, at homeless shelters and soup kitchens, or at the Junior Achievement facility in downtown Detroit, where they provide financial literacy lessons to teenagers. Several business majors have even developed these experiences into senior honors theses; for example, former valedictorian Kaitlin Avery, ’13, ’14 wrote, Identifying the Connections between Financial Literacy and Catholic Social Teaching.
The Complementarity of Mission and Quality
Of course, academic quality is a hallmark of a Jesuit education; thus, the focus on spiritual and social values must never compromise educational excellence. This is why several banners in the C&F Building celebrate the College’s success in developing competence, including multiple U.S. News & World Report rankings. The College’s graduate and undergraduate Management programs are ranked among the top 20 in the nation, and the College has the 19th highest pass rate among first-time candidates from small programs on the Certified Public Accounting exam.
Such accomplishments are achieved not despite, but because of the combined focus on faith-based values and academic rigor. Competence, compassion and conscience can and should be complementary, and the faculty and staff of the University of Detroit Mercy’s College of Business Administration work to ensure that students carry this mantra with them for the rest of their lives.
By Dr. Rose Sebastianelli, Professor of Operations and Information Management and Alperin Endowed Chair in Business Administration, University of Scranton
What does it mean to be a Jesuit business school? What role should business faculty play in fostering Jesuit ideals? What are the objectives of a mission-inspired project in teaching? How can the scholarly output of business faculty contribute to the Jesuit mission?
These were some of the questions examined by a small group of faculty in the Kania School of Management (KSOM) at the University of Scranton, who took part in the Business Education for Justice Seminar, which I organized and led with support from the University’s Jesuit Center and the KSOM dean, Michael Mensah, Ph.D., as the “capstone project” for the Ignatian Colleagues Program (ICP).
Inspiration from the Ignatian Colleagues Program
Under the auspices of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU), ICP is an 18-month program “designed to educate and form administrators and faculty more deeply in the Jesuit and Catholic tradition of higher education.” It includes online workshops, reflection papers, seminars and an immersion trip to the United States / Mexico border through the KINO Border Initiative. ICP concludes with a “capstone experience” in which participants plan projects for advancing mission on their own campuses.
Participating in the ICP motivated me, a full professor with almost 30 years of service to Scranton, to understand more fully the Ignatian tradition and consider the ways in which it could (and should) impact my work going forward. In addition to providing a Jesuit-inspired education to students, I wanted to ensure Ignatian values would be passed onto future generations. This would require collaboration with colleagues to create a critical mass of KSOM faculty committed to fulfilling the Jesuit mission through the “service of faith and promotion of justice.” I wanted to exploit the “multiplier” effect so that Ignatian values could be shared as broadly as possible, with colleagues, students, alumni and the business community. I also wanted to include newly-hired faculty with the potential to contribute to the Jesuit mission for many years to come. These goals informed the design of the Business Education for Justice Seminar.
Seminar included education, reflection and action
The Business Education for Justice Seminar involved three components. The first was educational, fostering a deep understanding of Ignatian identity and the Jesuit tradition through carefully selected readings and guided discussion. The second was reflective, encouraging the exploration of what it means to be a Jesuit business school and the role of KSOM faculty in promoting Jesuit ideals. The third involved action, developing proposals to implement specific mission-inspired projects in teaching and/or research. The three intended outcomes impacting mission were: to deepen faculty commitment to the Jesuit identity of KSOM; to increase the coverage of mission-related content (e.g., Responsibility, Sustainability and Justice) in business courses; and to increase faculty scholarly output on research topics that challenge the business, academic and professional communities to consider society and the greater good.
The Business Education for Justice Seminar launched in the fall of 2015 with four junior and senior faculty who represented three of KSOM’s four departments. Participants were Satya Chattopadhyay, Ph.D., (management, marketing and entrepreneurship) and Jordan Petsas, Ph.D., (economics / finance), both associate professors who serve as department chairpersons; and Ozgur Isil, Ph.D. and Yibai Li, Ph.D. (operations and information management), both assistant professors who are newer faculty members at Scranton.
The educational component of the Business Education for Justice Seminar was patterned after that of the ICP. The group met regularly during the academic year to discuss readings grouped by six main topics: (1) Introduction to St. Ignatius Loyola, (2) Jesuit Education: Roots and Riches of Ignatian Humanism, (3) Faith, Secularity and Ignatian Education, (4) A Faith that Does Justice, (5) Catholicity and Jesuit Education: Challenges and Appreciation, and (6) Ignatian Discernment to Advance Mission. The reflective component of the seminar was facilitated by a mini-retreat held near the end of the spring semester in 2016.
Throughout the seminar, several salient themes emerged. It became apparent to the group that social justice addressed only through service activities keeps these issues “extracurricular.” Faculty responsibilities are at the “heart” of a university and can help set the “moral climate” of an institution. Therefore, it is imperative that business school faculty be intentional in what they choose to teach and research. Considering the likelihood that KSOM students will go on to assume influential positions in business and society, KSOM faculty must include content that helps to shed light on the “weighty issues” and foster in students the skill of discernment, the practice of attention, reverence and devotion, and a commitment to the greater good that will guide their future decision-making. KSOM faculty should seek opportunities to address the “big questions” in their scholarship with the goal of expanding the role of business to consider the “authentic good of human society.”
Outcomes: Business Education for Justice
Several mission-inspired projects consistent with these themes are currently underway at the University of Scranton. One is a research project examining the business relevance of reducing the environmental impact of value chains through integration with customers and suppliers (Isil). Another is investigating how different levels of participation in international service programs impacts the justice sensitivity of students (Chattopadhyay). A collaborative effort on the part of operations and information management faculty (Isil, Li and Sebastianelli) is infusing social justice into the undergraduate business core curriculum.
Faculty began to incorporate social justice issues using strategies appropriate for their subject matter in spring 2017. In business statistics, the hidden curriculum approach fosters an appreciation for the “social context” within which statistical methods can be used to analyze data related to issues such as discrimination, income inequality and unfair labor practices (Sebastianelli). In operations management, students are exposed to the environmental and social consequences of economic activity (e.g. climate change, deforestation, loss of biodiversity), as well as how leading firms gain competitive advantage by adopting practices (e.g. reverse logistics, eco-industrial parks, biomimicry) that can mitigate these consequences (Isil). In business information management, students analyze case studies that illustrate the potential ethical dilemmas arising in the IT workplace and e-commerce setting (e.g. showrooming, information privacy, data security).
The inaugural Business Education for Justice Seminar in KSOM is an important first step toward integrating social justice into the core faculty responsibilities of teaching and research. However, developing responsible faculty companions in mission is an ongoing process. Ideally, it involves a way of proceeding, a way of responding, and a way of making choices that is sustainable and consistent with mission. Only then can there be a true faculty partnership with the Ignatian tradition.