By Lori Bredemeyer, Student Reporter
Recent national corporate scandals have challenged ACU teachers and students to deal with ethical issues.
The bankruptcy of several companies like Enron and WorldCom and allegations of insider trading on Wall Street have business professors focusing more on ethical behavior and instilling Christian values in the classroom.
Darryl Jinkerson, assistant professor of management, worked for Arthur Andersen for 14 years and lost his job when the company folded after a series of high-profile scandals in May. He said he uses his experiences with the company as examples to students.
“One message I tell my students now is to not put too much faith in any company,” Jinkerson said. “I worked for a company with 85,000 employees-a $10 billion company that had an impeccable reputation, and in less than a year that reputation was totally trashed. All of a sudden for the first time in my life, I was unemployed.”
Dr. Bill Fowler, chair of the Department of Accounting and Finance, said in an email that he is teaching students to build a relationship with Christ to help guide them in making decisions in the business world.
“I think we prepare students by encouraging them to submit their entire life to the lordship of Christ,” he said. “I tell them that they need to decide that they are not for sale, that they will not compromise their values..”
Jessica Vizcaya, sophomore marketing major from Mount Vernon, Wash., said she has begun to learn about ethics in her business management class.
“We’ve just started talking about what decisions you make out in the world and if they’re ethical or not,” she said. “We’ve talked about what’s right and wrong and what you should and shouldn’t do. My accounting teacher talked about how if you make a mistake, that’s one thing, but if you cover up a mistake that’s something else.”
Vizcaya said she transferred from a private secular school, and values and ethics are more closely analyzed at ACU.
Jinkerson said he encourages students to stand by their faith.
“I try to instill in my students that you do not have to compromise your ethics or your integrity to be successful,” he said. “I think that’s key. We need to tell them that you can be a Christian and be successful. It’s important for us to be the pillars of Christian morals and ethics.”