Fulfilling the Bill Daniels Vision

April 28, 2016

The Daniels College of Business is proud to be named after Bill Daniels, a man who not only donated generously to transform our institution in an era of change, but exemplified ethics, integrity, honesty and an entrepreneurial spirit in his daily life. Today, we strive to instill those very principles into each and every student who walks the halls of our College.

In 1989, Bill Daniels challenged our College to revamp our graduate business curriculum and incorporate the fundamentals of ethics and values-based leadership. Since then, the Daniels College of Business has seen tremendous change, but ethics has always been at the core of who we are. Today, the world is changing rapidly, and so is Daniels. As we evolve, however, ethics remains integral to our mission and our commitment to students.

Here are some of the ways we continue to fulfill the vision of our namesake in the classroom and across campus:

Curriculum – Ethics is represented in some courses in accounting, finance, marketing, management, law, and business information and analytics. We also have standalone graduate classes on ethics in accounting and finance and one in development for undergraduate finance students. Our Ethics Integration Committee works with faculty to develop new and innovative ways to incorporate ethics into the curriculum, for both graduates and undergraduates. This committee awards several grants a year to enable faculty members to bring their ideas to life in the classroom.

Cocurricular programming – Our renowned Ethics Boot Camp is a required experience for Daniels undergraduate business school students, as part of the business core. Each year, over 500 students, typically in their sophomore year, are lead through a weekend-long program in which students delve into ethical issues with their peers, professors and business professionals to help them develop a lifelong framework for ethical decision making. Ethics Boot Camp focuses not only on ethical case studies involving ethical decision making, but also includes a service component in partnership with the Children’s Hospital of Colorado.

Principle Leadership Ethics Forum – This new program brings together graduate students, faculty and executives in a casual setting to talk about real ethical dilemmas and how executives dealt with them as well as how they would deal with them today with hindsight and perspective. This month, we hosted the first dinner with former CEO and author/speaker Bob Vanourek as the featured executive. Nearly 60 people were in attendance.

Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative Speaker Series – In fall 2016, we will launch this brand new speaker series for faculty and students. Renowned scholars will come to campus to share some current ethics literature and talk about timely issues such as the impact of big data on ethics in business.

Luncheons with Principles – In partnership with the Institute for Enterprise Ethics, the College will launch this series in fall 2016, which will bring together students and faculty from across campus to learn from executives who have intriguing stories to share about each of how the principles of the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative (integrity, trust, accountability, transparency, fairness, respect, rule of law and viability) have guided them in business.

Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative Ethics and Law Workshops – The Denver MBA, which launches in fall 2016, will include a new series of required content workshops that focus on the principles that Bill Daniels lived by—the very principles that guide the Daniels Fund today. The principles will be shared in a broader context in a training session format.

As Daniels begins a new chapter in its history and unveils a new positioning strategy that will enable us to build upon our strengths and elevate the College as a leader in management education, we recognize that ethics will always been one of the hallmarks of Daniels. We offer rigorous education in fundamental business disciplines, but we also believe that one can make a profit while making a difference. We have the opportunity to change the way the world thinks about business by shaping tomorrow’s business leaders.

To learn more about how Daniels integrates ethics into its curriculum and programs, contact Robert Giacalone, Bill Daniels chair of ethics, at robert.giacalone@du.edu.