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Fall Ethics Events

The next few weeks will be busy for the Center for Ethics.

Students for Ethics has joined with Alpha Pi Iota, the health professions student club, to sponsor a discussion of the ethics of physician assisted suicide on Tuesday, 9/22/15 at 7 PM. The discussion will focus on Brittany Maynard and her decision to end her life with PAS and her advocacy of legal PAS.

On Tuesday, 10/6/15, the Center for Ethics will be hosting a Conversation on Animal Welfare and Christian Ethics. This will be a panel discussion focused on the Evangelical Statement on Responsible Care for Animals. This statement was written by several evangelical leaders in conjunction with the Humane Society of the United States and will be released at the end of September. the discussion at Taylor will be the first of a series of discussions across the country as a part of the Every Living Thing campaign being coordinated by The Clapham Group. Taylor University’s Dr. Jim Spiegel will be on the panel along with Reasa Currier of the Humane Society of the United States; Dr. Charles Arand, member of Humane Society Faith Advisory Council and Professor at Concordia Theological Seminary in St. Louis; and Abby Skeans of The Clapham Group. the discussion will be at 7 PM in the Recital Hall.

On Monday, 10/19/15, Dr. Nancy Jones will be coming to Taylor for the second annual Walter Randall Lecture on Ethics and Research. Dr. Jones is a senior health science policy analyst at the
National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities of the NIH. her topic will be “Navigating the Nexus of Science and Ethics”. We will meet at 4 PM in Euler 109.


Annual Report 2014-2015

The Annual Report of the Taylor University Center for Ethics for 2014-2015 is available by clicking on the Annual Report heading or at this link. Read about what the Center has been doing in the past academic year.


Students for Ethics sponsors discussion of religious freedom

Students for Ethics has sponsored several student discussions focused on the ethical issues related to current events throughout the year. The most recent discussion on April 22 featured a faculty panel of Dr. Jim Spiegel, Dr. Nicholas Kerton-Johnson, and Dr. Stephen Phillips addressing the issue of religious freedom in relation to the recently passed Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act. There were over 40 people in attendance and excellent participation in the discussion.


Taylor University Ethics Bowl Team Wins the National Championship

2015 national champion Ethics Bowl team

Congratulations to the Taylor University Ethics Bowl team who won the national championship on 2/22/15.  They won all three qualifying matches (against Duke, Santa Clara and Texas Pan American).  Then they defeated Villanova in the quarter-finals, Indiana University in the semi-finals, and Whitworth University in the championship match.  The competition took place at the Hilton Hotel in Costa Mesa, California.  32 teams total, all having qualified by finishing among the top teams in their region.  There are ten regions nationwide, with several hundred teams competing across the nation.



The cases topics at nationals were the following (two cases covered per match):

  • The ethics of unpaid internships
  • The use of ancient artifacts (Roman lead ingots) for scientific purposes
  • The ethics of “prescriptive planting” farming technology
  • The killing of civilians in war
  • Parental rights of rapists
  • Fracking
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Minimum wage
  • Horse slaughterhouses
  • Stealth (undercover) journalism
  • Media use of “crowdsourcing”
  • Transgendered people and public bathrooms

Team roster:

Jess Biermann, Senior (Philosophy)

Nathaniel Cullen, Senior (Philosophy and Environmental Studies)

Kasey Leander, Junior (Political Science, Philosophy, and Economics)

Davis Meadors, Senior (Philosophy)

Caleb Nagel, Senior (Political Science)

Mark Taylor, Senior (Philosophy)

Veronica Toth, Junior (English)


Non-roster E-Bowlers who were on the Fall regionals team and made the trip to nationals, supporting the team in various ways:

Kyle Carruthers, Senior (Professional Writing)

Lydia Grace Espiritu (Philosophy)


Jim Spiegel is the coach.

Katie Duncan is the assistant coach, and she led the team in the Fall when the team qualified for nationals.


Taylor Univeristy Ethics Bowl team qualifies for national competition at 2014 Regionals

2014 regional ethics bowl team








The Taylor University Ethics Bowl team took second place in the Midwest Regional Ethics Bowl competition on November 1, 2014 which qualifies them for the national competition in Costa Mesa California on February 22, 2015. Taylor University was one of 15 schools competing in the regional competition. The team was coached this year by Katie Duncan. Students on the team include:

Veronica Toth (Junior, English Lit)

Kayla Gotha (Senior, Political Science)

Kasey Leander (Junior, History/PPE)

Joe Kasper (Senior, Chemistry/Math)

Mark Taylor (Senior, Philosophy)

Jess Biermann (Senior, Philosophy)

Nathaniel Cullen (Senior, Philosophy)

Davis Meadors (Senior, Philosophy/Bib Lit)

Caleb Nagel (Senior, Political Science/History)

Lydia Grace Espiritu (Junior, Philosophy)

Seth Brandle (Junior, Political Science)

Blair Hedges (Sophomore, English)

Stephen Weick (Senior, Philosophy)


Annual report for 2013-2014

The annual report of the Taylor University Center for Ethics for 2013-2014 is now available on the Annual Report page. Copies of the Integration of Faith and Living statement and the Five Year Vision are included with the annual report.


5 year vision for the Center

The steering committee for the Center for Ethics has developed a five year vision for the center. This vision is now posted at Five Year Vision.


Integration of Faith and Living

The Center for Ethics has developed a statement titled “Integration of Faith and Living at Taylor University: Why an Emphasis on Ethics is Essential to Taylor University’s Mission” that discusses why a focus on ethics and helping students develop Christian moral character is essential to the mission of Taylor University. This statement has been presented to and approved by the Provost council of the university. You can read the statement by clicking on the title or find a link on our Ethics Resources page.


Ethics Bowl team wins regional competition

Congratulations to the Taylor University Ethics Bowl team. This past Saturday, November 9, the they won the regional championship for the second consecutive year and for the 3rd time in the last four years. This qualifies Taylor to compete in the national Ethics Bowl competition which is scheduled for February 27, 2014 and will be held at the Hyatt Regency Riverfront Hotel in Jacksonville, Florida. Taylor University will be one of 32 schools in the national competition with each school allowed to enter just one team. Taylor University entered three teams in the regional competition and placed first, third and fifth. Our teams had a combined record of 8 wins and 1 loss.

Twenty teams participated in this year’s Central States Regional competition. The other schools involved were Bellarmine University, Belmont University (two teams), Butler University, College of Mount St. Joseph (two teams) DePauw University (two teams), Eastern Kentucky University, Illinois Wesleyan University (two teams), Indiana University, Ivy Tech Community College, Marian University, Northern Kentucky University, University of Louisville, and Xavier University.

The members of the Taylor University Ethics Bowl team who competed were:
Team 1:
Suzanne Neefus (Senior, Philosophy)
Stephen Weick (Junior, Philosophy/History)
Joe Kasper (Junior, Chemistry/Math)
Blair Hedges (Freshman, Political Science)

Team 2 (first pace in the regional competition):
Nathaniel Cullen (Junior, Philosophy/Env. Studies)
Kyle Carruthers (Junior, Philosophy/Pro Writing)
Davis Meadors (Junior, Biblical Literature/Philosophy)
Lydia Grace Espiritu (Sophomore, Philosophy)

Team 3:
Jess Biermann (Junior, Philosophy)
Kasey Leander (Sophomore, History/Political Science)
Mark Taylor (Junior, Philosophy/Biblical Literature)
Veronica Toth (Sophomore, English Literature)

The cases debated at this year’s competition were excruciating as always, including the following:
Should bone marrow extraction and transplantation continue to be governed by the National Organ Transplant Act of 1984?
Should a particular business owner disclose his employees’ salaries when giving them the rationale for his company’s budget cuts?
If autonomous (computer-guided, self-driving) cars become standardized, should humans be forbidden by law to drive?
Do American consumers have a moral duty to find alternatives to clothing produced in sweat shops?
Other cases pertained to issues as wide ranging as surrogate motherhood, animal welfare issues, and child obesity public service commercials.


Students for Ethics Discussion

What collective obligations do we have towards protecting the health of others?

 Is healthcare a right? Whose obligation is it to provide for healthcare?

 Join the discussion in Euler 108 tomorrow night at 7pm or simply join the discussion on here!

Students for ethics