Area High School Students Explore Global Ethics Issues at Rowan Workshop

Students from four area high schools confronted major ethical issues at the inaugural Ethics and College Skills Workshop. Photo Credit: Rowan University

GLASSBORO, N.J. – Eighteen high school students from throughout South Jersey researched and addressed pressing ethical issues such as children’s rights, social media censorship, the banning of plastic bags and straws, and US world obligations during the first-ever Ethics and College Skills Workshop hosted by Rowan’s Philosophy & World Religions Department in the College of Humanities & Social Sciences earlier this summer.

During the one-day workshop, students in ninth through 12th grades spent the day at Rowan learning about major ethical theories, including utilitarianism, social contract theories and virtue ethics, among others.

“We then applied those theories to issues relevant to high school students, such as salaries and fairness, environmental ethics, free speech and social media, drug testing on high school campuses, and driverless cars,” Philosophy Professor Ellen Miller, chair of the Department of Philosophy and World Religions said in a press release from the University.

Miller and Kathleen Miller, an adjunct philosophy professor, led the workshop with assistance from recent graduates Mahaa Ahmed and Alec Nathan and senior philosophy major Gina Magliocco.

Students worked in small groups as they explored and debated some of the most pressing ethical and ideological issues facing our world today in areas of business, environment, science, and free speech.

Sponsored in part by a grant from the Philosophy Learning and Teaching Organization (PLATO), the free workshop also helped students gain skills needed for college success. Among them: critical thinking, ethical leadership, public speaking, teamwork, creative problem-solving, research skills, and multi-cultural understanding.

The day included a tour of Rowan and lunch on campus.