The National and Regional High School Ethics Bowls are competitive yet collaborative events in which students discuss real-life ethical issues. In each round of competition, teams take turns analyzing cases about complex ethical dilemmas and responding to questions and comments from the other team and from a panel of judges. An ethics bowl differs from a debate competition in that students are not assigned opposing views; rather, they defend whichever position they think is correct, provide each other with constructive criticism, and win by demonstrating that they have thought rigorously and systematically about the cases and engaged respectfully and supportively with all participants. Data from NHSEB surveys shows that this event teaches and promotes ethical awareness, critical thinking, civil discourse, civic engagement, and an appreciation for multiple points of view.
NHSEB’s goal is to do more than teach students how to think through ethical issues: It is to teach students how to think through ethical issues together, as fellow citizens in a complex moral and political community.
The NHSEB is modeled on the Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl (IEB), and we are indebted to their sponsor, the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics, and to the IEB’s creator Dr. Robert Ladenson, for their example, inspiration, and assistance.
The NHSEB is run by Dominique Déry, the program’s Director, with advising and support from an Executive Committee at UNC Philosophy and the UNC Parr Center for Ethics as well as an external Advisory Committee. Topic-specific committees (such as Outreach, Fundraising, Resources, and Rules) are formed as needed.
2018-2019 NHSEB committees and members:
Dominique Déry | Parr Center for Ethics
Dominique received her PhD in political theory from Duke University in 2015. Her dissertation, “Civic Friendship and Democracy: Past and Present Perspectives” focused on several accounts of the meaning and importance of things like care and compassion in healthy and diverse democratic communities. She has worked for Transplanting Traditions Community Farm, the Kenan Institute for Ethics, and The David M. Rubenstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Duke University.
Katie Fanfani Bunyea | Parr Center for Ethics
Sally Moore | Parr Center for Ethics
Geoff Sayre-McCord | UNC Philosophy
Sarah Stroud | Parr Center for Ethics
Steve Swartzer | Parr Center for Ethics
Rob Willison | Parr Center for Ethics
Mark Doorley | Villanova University
Richard Greene | Weber State University
Kyle Robertson | University of California, Santa Cruz
Inspired by the aims and values that govern the National High School Ethics Bowl (NHSEB), the Marc Sanders Foundation is pleased to sponsor prizes for the finalists and semifinalists in the NHSEB National Bowl, held each Spring at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. The Marc Sanders Foundation aims to stimulate renewed appreciation for philosophical issues and the skills needed to fruitfully explore them, and is delighted to support the excellence and hard work of high school students across the country in this annual competition. The Marc Sanders Foundation also helps to fund our financial aid program that helps qualifying teams travel to the Nationals. We are grateful for their important support.
At the 2019 Nationals, the finalists (two teams) and semifinalists (two teams) will be awarded with a prize of $2,500 per team.
Congratulations to the four teams that received the Marc Sanders Prize at the 2019 National High School Ethics Bowl:
- Jesuit High School (OR)
- Choate Rosemary Hall (CT)
- St. Petersburg High School (FL)
- Colorado Academy (CO)
Photography provided by Steven Swartzer and Caroline Carpenter.
Photography provided by Terry Ciszek