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UW Team Wins 2022 Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative Case Competition

April 13, 2022
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Members of UW’s winning Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative Case Competition team are, from left, UW students Joe Rubald, of Loveland, Colo.; Sean Donovan, of Centennial, Colo.; Brynn Sedar, of Reno, Nev.; Payson Birkeland, of Aladdin; Ellie Keeler, of Broomfield, Colo.; and Tucker Norman, of Pine Bluffs. (Daniels Fund Photo)

A team of undergraduate students from the University of Wyoming’s College of Business has won the 2022 Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative Case Competition.

The team -- Payson Birkeland, of Aladdin; Sean Donovan, of Centennial, Colo.; Ellie Keeler, of Broomfield, Colo.; Tucker Norman, of Pine Bluffs; Joe Rubald, of Loveland, Colo.; and Brynn Sedar, of Reno, Nev. -- secured the first-ever, top-place finish for UW.

The competition, designed exclusively for business schools that are part of the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative Collegiate Program, challenged nine undergraduate and nine graduate student teams from schools in Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming on their ethical reasoning and decision-making abilities.

The teams were given a thought-provoking business ethics case about a fictional auto parts company. Each team acted as a consulting firm and worked to create a presentation that was judged against the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative principles of integrity, trust, accountability, transparency, fairness, respect, the rule of law and viability.

Their task was to analyze the ethical issues involved and then present their recommendations to a panel of business and community leaders. The ethical issues raised in the case included fair competition, diversity, conflicts of interest and nepotism.

“It was incredibly gratifying to see the students’ diligent preparation translate into a first-place finish. Acting in their roles as ethics consultants, they deeply analyzed the case and smartly drew upon relevant financial, legal and ethical doctrines to make compelling recommendations,” says Chase Thiel, faculty adviser to the undergraduate team and the UW Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative Collegiate Program Professor of Business Ethics. “Then, they did an absolutely amazing job presenting their analyses and recommendations to the panel of judges, which was composed of accomplished business professionals. I couldn’t be prouder of how our students represented UW and what they were able to accomplish.”

The Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative Collegiate Program was established in 2010 by the Daniels Fund -- a fund created by cable TV pioneer Bill Daniels as a way to instill a high ethical standard among college students. The consortium consists of 11 universities in four states.

To learn more about the Daniels Fund and the results of the competition, visit www.danielsfund.org/2022-04-11-university-of-wyoming-wins-undergraduate-daniels-fund-ethics-case-competition.

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