Lakewood student Megan Clift was a member of a team from the University of San Diego that placed first in the California Regional Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl on Dec. 6 and will now go to the Fifteenth National Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl Championship Competition in March. Clift is a 2005 graduate of Lakes High School. She is a senior at USD.
During the competition, teams are judged on their answers to a wide range of complex and controversial ethical issues drawn from politics, campus life, science, business and current events.
The USD team of four students defeated a team from California State University, Chico, in the final round of the competition that took place at the National Hispanic University in San Jose. Ten teams from California competed in the day-long event, including San Jose State University and last year’s regional winner, California State Polytechnic University Pomona, which USD defeated in the first match.
“Our intense study of ethical theory and practical ethics and our hard training for this event paid off,” said USD Associate Professor of Philosophy Mark Woods. “I can’t begin to tell you how proud I am of the students. They earned this. It is a victory for USD and something the students will always carry with them.”
The USD team competed in five matches, each of which was 80 minutes long. Questions posed to the team included those on whether undocumented students should be allowed to attend public universities and the ethical issues surrounding the production of biofuels. A second team from USD took part in the early rounds of the competition.
The competition started in 1993 as an intramural event at the Illinois Institute of Technology organized by its Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions and has grown to be a national competition that now includes 10 regional bowls around the country prior to the national competition next spring. The event develops students’ intellectual abilities and reinforces their sense of ethical commitment. Answers from the students are judged are on a variety of factors including intelligibility, relevance, and thoughtfulness.
The University of San Diego is a Catholic institution of higher learning chartered in 1949; the school enrolls approximately 7,500 undergraduate and graduate students and is known for its commitment to teaching, the liberal arts, the formation of values and community service. The inauguration of the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies brings the university’s total number of schools and colleges to six. Other academic divisions include the College of Arts and Sciences and the schools of Business Administration, Law, Leadership and Education Sciences, and Nursing and Health Science.