WMU News

Business dean explores 21st-century ethical challenges

Sept. 3, 2002

KALAMAZOO -- Why is America experiencing such a rash of corporate scandals, and how should the business community respond? The dean of Western Michigan University's Haworth College of Business will explore these and other timely questions at an early-morning presentation Friday, Sept. 13.

Dr. James W. Schmotter will discuss "What We're Up Against: Trends in 21st-Century American Society that Produce Ethical Challenges for Business" as part of the Keystone Community Bank Breakfast Series. The free Haworth College of Business program, which includes a continental breakfast, will begin at 7:30 a.m. in Room 2150 of Schneider Hall on the WMU campus. Parking will be available in the adjacent Fetzer Center lot. Reservations are required and can be made by calling the business dean's office at (269) 387-5050.

"There's a lot of justified cynicism about institutions in our society--teachers strike, priests abuse children, professor plagiarize, accountants can't count," says Schmotter. "That's just one of the factors that help produce the challenges we face today. We'll also explore the demand for instant gratification, our lack of enduring ethical role models, and how the speed and complexity of information today makes careful consideration of ethics more difficult."

Since 1997, Schmotter has been a professor of management and dean of WMU's Haworth College of Business. Before joining the University, he served as dean of the College of Business and Economics at Lehigh University and associate dean of Cornell University's Johnson Graduate School of Management. After receiving his bachelor's degree from Muskingum College, Schmotter went on to earn master's and doctoral degrees in history from Northwestern University.

He has written frequently in the scholarly and popular press on international business and education issues. Schmotter is a contributing author of "The Official Guide to Financing Your MBA" and the Newsweek/Kaplan "Business School Admissions Advisor," and he is editor-in-chief of Selections: The Magazine of the Graduate Management Admissions Council. As a consultant, he has worked for the Institute for International Education, the U.S. Department of Education, IBM, TRW Corp. and various universities around the United States and Europe. In 2001, Schmotter was named Educator of the Year by the West Michigan Chapter of INROADS. He is a member of the Kalamazoo Rotary Club and the Japan-America Society of West Michigan, as well as chairman of the board of directors of Junior Achievement of Kalamazoo and VanBuren counties.

The Keystone Community Bank Breakfast Series at the Haworth College of Business features WMU faculty and alumni speaking about their research and teaching on a variety of timely business issues. The company and college formed the partnership in 2000 to offer monthly presentations that are free and open to the public.

Media contact: Jessica English, 269 387-8400, jessica.english@wmich.edu

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