The Hoffberger Center has many programs and activities for students to help them learn about the kinds of ethical issues and problems that arise in business and the professions.
The University Ethics Seminars were established in 1991 to provide an informal setting for the University community to meet on a monthly basis during the academic year to discuss a range of topical ethical issues. Seminar speakers have included University faculty and administrators, colleagues from our sister institutions, and notable leaders in business, law, government, health care, medicine, journalism, law enforcement and local non-profit communities.
The setting of our seminars is informal and the format is designed to encourage members of the audience to engage in critical discussion with the speaker and among themselves. The opportunity for our students, faculty and staff to hear presentations by leaders and practitioners in a number of professions has established our University Ethics Seminars series as one of the more popular and recognized programs on the University calendar. Our seminars have attracted an annual attendance of well over five hundred.
All University Ethics Seminars are free and open to the public. Refer to the Hoffberger Center Calendar for seminar dates.
Moral Dimensions of Mozart's Don Giovanni
Andrew Balio and Marcus Stenz discuss the ethical issues in Don Giovanni, a two-act opera about the licentious nobleman Don Giovanni. He abuses, manipulates, and outrages everyone with whom he crosses path. He meets with his demise when he encounters something that he cannot kill or outwit.
Ethics and Politics
Nationally recognized political science professor, José Florencio Fernández Santillán, joins the College of Public Affairs as a Fullbright Scholar. José is a political science professor and researcher at Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education, Mexico City and Harvard University.
"The relationship between Ethics and Politics dows not have one definition and solution. Based on the ideas of Professor Norberto Bobbio (1909-2002) from the University of Turin, where I studied, I will expose the way in which some classical authors interpreted this relationship between Ethics and Politics, among them, Thomas Hobbes, Jean Bodin, Benedetto Croce, Hegel, Machiavelli, and Max Weber. What characteristic of the so-called "School of Turin" in Political Thought and Ethics is order when its members like Norberto, Bobbio, Alessandro Passerin D'Entréves, Renato Treves, and theri Professor Giole Solari, studied, wrote, and exposed their ideas. I wil try to honor their legacy in my presentation."
Violence Against Women: Is It a Man's Issue?
Ron Kipling Williams is a poet and solo performance artist who also teaches writing composition at University of Baltimore. He has been published in the Welter magazine, and he facilitated this panel discussion.
The Ethics of American Diplomacy
Josh Kassner and Steve Scalet led a conversation and debate with David Milne on the Ethical Challenges for America's Foreign Policies. David Milne is a senior lecturer in modern history at the University of East Anglia. He is the author of America's Rasputin: Walt Rostow and the Vietnam War and senior editor of the two-volume Oxford Encyclopedia of American Military and Diplomatic History. Josh Kassner and Steve Scalet are both professors in the Division of Legal, Ethical, and Historical Studies at the University of Baltimore.
The Private Benefit of Public Art
The Baltimore Love Project expresses love by connecting people and communities across Baltimore City through love themed murals.
"The first time I shared the Baltimore Love Project with a well-known journalist, their response was, 'Who gives a #$%?' The question is appropriate with the unimaginable injustice that is happening in the world. Art will not give us universal education opportunities, stop police brutality, or undo centuries of racism. I believe it can do so much more! With a tour of public art from around the world, and your own UB neighborhood, I will share how beauty will save the world."
He engaged in discussion regarding what art is and what value it holds.
We offer student assistant positions and one student fellowship (per year) to students who wish to pursue an interest in the study of ethics within the classroom and the application of ethics as practiced in the Hoffberger Center. Students are selected on the basis of their academic credentials along with the commitment and skills that they bring to the center.
- To involve a number of students from the three academic divisions of the University (law, liberal arts, and business) in the Hoffberger Center's annual program of events and activities.
- To develop a network of students to gather and disseminate information for and about programs and events.
- To build an alumni source for future speakers and sponsors in the Baltimore community.
- Center gains input of many students.
- Allows the students to relate to the Center on a personal level.
- Center constantly recruits interested students to bring new thoughts and ideas.
Each year, the Hoffberger Center for Professional Ethics hosts several Ethics Bowl competitions, including the Maryland High School Ethics Bowl and the Community College Ethics Bowl. These competitions are designed to give students the opportunity to hone their analytical and critical-thinking skills in a team environment. Ethics Bowl participants take ethical cases covering a broad range of issues, consider their merits, and identify how these issues should be addressed, before qualified judges. The result is a robust dialogue that encourages students to think and communicate clearly and effectively, while practicing civility and consensus building.
Maryland High School Ethics Bowl
The University of Baltimore’s Hoffberger Center for Professional Ethics hosted and sponsored the 2019 Maryland High School Ethics Bowl competition on Saturday, Feb. 2. in the William H. Thumel Sr. Business Center, home of the Merrick School of Business on the UB campus. Eight teams from six Maryland high schools competed, including:
- Baltimore Polytechnic Institute
- Gerstell Academy
- Liberty High School
- Mercy High School
- Our Lady of Mt. Carmel School
- Sparrows Point High School.
Gerstell Academy was the winning team (for the second year in a row) and will advance to the regional playoffs.
14th Annual Community College Ethics Bowl
The University of Baltimore's Hoffberger Center for Professional Ethics held its 14th Annual Community College Ethics Bowl on Saturday, November 11 in the William H. Thumel Sr. Business Center. The day-long event is one of the longest-running collegiate-level ethics competitions in the country, and has provided an opportunity for hundreds of Maryland community college students to hone their analytical and critical-thinking skills in a team environment. Teams from the following community colleges participated:
- Anne Arundel Community College
- Baltimore City Community College
- Community College of Baltimore, Essex Campus
Congratulations to the Baltimore City Community College Team, winners of the 14th Annual 2017 Community College Ethics Bowl!
UB Goes to the 2016 Southeast Regional Ethics Bowl
Six students from UB led by coach and Hoffberger Center Director Fred Guy, represented University of Baltimore at the 2016 Southeast Regional Ethics Bowl Competition in St. Petersburg, Florida. They placed 5th place with a 3-1 record and advanced to the national competition.
The Catherine Gira Excellence in Ethics Award is funded by an annual donation from Dr. Catherine Gira, co-founder of the Hoffberger Center for Professional Ethics, former Provost of the University of Baltimore and retired President of Frostburg State University. Dr. Gira's wish is to recognize and reward students who best demonstrate excellence in ethics while serving his or her local community. The center is grateful to Dr. Gira for her continued support of this most worthy scholarship
Open to all undergraduate, graduate and law school students (full or part-time, at least six (6) credits each semester). This scholarship ($500) is given at the beginning of the fall and spring semester.
Eligibility will be a 3.5 or higher GPA along with a demonstrated excellence in writing and an established record of promoting ethical awareness and resolving ethical issues in his or her community.
Applicants are required to submit a three- to four-page essay, along with two letters of recommendation and a letter of application to the Hoffberger Center for Professional Ethics, H. Mebane Turner Learning Commons, Room 300.
The fall application deadline is July 15 and spring application deadline is Dec. 15.
The goal of the Hoffberger Center's Community College Partnership Program is to encourage and assist area community colleges in initiating and maintaining ethics programs programs on their campuses. This program has proved to be enormously successful since its inception in 1996-97, thanks to the hard work of our colleagues at our local community colleges. The center has helped produce and sponsor Ethics Weeks, Ethics Essay Contests and The Community College Ethics Bowl.
With the help and continued support of the center, Ethics Weeks have become a popular staple on area college campuses. Keynote speakers of national reputations in a variety of fields have been guests at recent community college Ethics Weeks.
The center has also been successful in starting and sponsoring Ethics Essay Contests on community campuses. These contests are widely publicized and draw a large number of entries every year.
- Anne Arundel Community College
- Baltimore Policy Academy
- Baltimore City Community College
- CCBC Catonsville Campus
- CCBC Dundalk Campus
- CCBC Essex Campus
- Howard Community College