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Dickinson College's Ethical Education Earns High Praise

Students in a first-year seminar take advantage of a warm summery day during Orientation Week. Photo by Carl Socolow '77.

Students in a First-Year Seminar take advantage of a warm summery day during Orientation week. Photo by Carl Socolow '77.

College representatives to present about Dickinson's innovative Orientation at a national higher-ed conference

by MaryAlice Bitts-Jackson

Last year, Dickinson launched an innovative Orientation program that helps first-year students reflect on what matters to them most as they begin to develop the skills they’ll need to navigate new experiences ahead. Now, an association devoted to fostering excellence in higher education is spreading the word about Dickinson’s leading-edge ethical-reasoning program so that others might learn from its success.

NODA: the Association for Orientation, Transition and Retention in Higher Education, has invited Amy McKiernan, assistant professor of philosophy, and Josh Eisenberg, former director of student leadership & campus engagement, to present at the association’s 2019 national conference. Held in Houston, Oct. 20-23, the conference will welcome higher-education professionals from across the United States to share leading ideas in higher education.

This honor arises from a presentation McKiernan and Eisenberg delivered at a regional NODA conference hosted last March at Virginia Tech. After discussing students’ responses to Dickinson’s new “Where Do You Stand?” program, McKiernan and Eisenberg invited colleagues at other institutions to also build time into Orientation programming for ethics education. NODA officials named the Dickinson leaders among its 2019 showcase conference winners and extended an invitation to present at the larger conference this fall.

“I am grateful and delighted that NODA selected our presentation for the national conference, and I look forward to talking with colleagues from colleges and universities across the country about the value of incorporating ethical reasoning into new student orientation,” says McKiernan. “I am indebted to the student leaders who have facilitated the ethics sessions at Orientation, as this work would not be possible without our talented staff of student mentors." 


Published August 27, 2019