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Excellence Through Ethics Essay Contest
For Immediate Release:
JUNIOR ACHIEVEMENT AND DELOITTE CHALLENGE HIGH SCHOOL SENIORS TO APPLY ETHICAL DECISION-MAKING
Students invited to compete for $5,000 college scholarship in fourth annual "Excellence through Ethics" essay contest
Colorado Springs, Colo. - Junior Achievement (JA) and Deloitte today announced the launch of their fourth annual "Excellence through Ethics" essay contest, in which high school seniors are asked to apply their knowledge of ethical decision-making and share their views on the importance of ethics in business. To enter, high school seniors must compose an original essay of 500 words or less in response to an ethical dilemma posted on Junior Achievement's Web site, located at www.ja.org. Entries must be submitted online and will be accepted starting today, until March 28, 2008.
The winning essay will be selected by members of the Junior Achievement Blue Ribbon Panel on Ethics, comprised of corporate ethics officers and noted academicians. The essays will be judged on criteria that includes how well the student analyzes the situation, presents a well-supported argument in response to the dilemma, and how thoughtfully they articulate the importance of ethics in business.
The contest is part of Deloitte's $2 million commitment to Junior Achievement to promote ethical decision-making among young people. Results of the fifth annual JA/Deloitte Teen Ethics Survey revealed that the majority of teens surveyed (71 percent) feel fully prepared to make ethical decisions when they enter the workforce. Yet, 38 percent of that group believes it is sometimes necessary to cheat, plagiarize, lie or even behave violently in order to succeed. Nearly one-quarter (24 percent) of all teens surveyed think cheating on a test is acceptable on some level, and more than half of those teens (54 percent) say their personal desire to succeed is the rationale.
"This contest gives students a great opportunity to demonstrate their understanding of the critical importance of ethical behavior in the workplace-while they try to earn money for college," said Sean C. Rush, president and chief executive officer of Junior Achievement. "JA's ethics curricula are a key component of our workforce readiness programs. We are proud to work with Deloitte to promote this important initiative and provide young people with ethical decision-making tools."
Business leaders believe that practical application is one of the best forms of instruction. "Applying the ethical decision-making concepts to a real-life scenario, when multiple angles must be considered, is a great way to enhance the learning process," said Ainar D. Aijala, Jr., Global Managing Partner, Consulting, Deloitte and Chairman of the Board, JA Worldwide. "The contest will be a valuable exercise for every student who competes."
Junior Achievement and Deloitte recently launched JA Business EthicsTM in a continuation of their $2 million initiative to help young people make ethical decisions. Developed to address the needs of high school students, JA Business Ethics provides hands-on classroom activities and real-life applications designed to foster ethical decision-making as students prepare to enter the workforce. Students examine how their beliefs align with major ethics theories and learn the benefits and advantages of having a code of ethics. Additionally, Junior Achievement recently updated its original Deloitte-sponsored ethics program, Excellence through EthicsTM, which is available online at ja.org free of charge and provides age-appropriate lessons for students in grades 4-12.
To enter the contest, students must have completed at least one Junior Achievement lesson in ethical decision-making. For more information on the "Excellence through Ethics" essay contest, including the complete contest rules, please visit http://studentcenter.ja.org/aspx/LearnEthics/.
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