Junior Achievement will
present ethics program at VHS By David Lias
Editor Students at Vermillion High School will get a taste of the importance of ethics in the workplace, thanks to a one-day program sponsored by Junior Achievement of Vermillion. The organization will be implementing JA Excelling through Ethics, aimed at teaching high school students the importance of ethics. The program will impact over 430 students, and take place on Tuesday, Jan. 13, at the high school. All VHS students will be taught about the importance of ethics by 15 executive-level volunteers from the Vermillion community. Activities in the classroom will include case scenarios and small group discussion. According to a survey conducted in 2007 by JA Worldwide and Deloitte, "Nearly 40 percent of teens believe that lying, cheating, or violence are acceptable behaviors and are necessary to succeed." This illustrates the need to help students realize the impact ethics has on business and everyday life. The initiative behind JA Excelling through Ethics is to teach students what ethics means, why ethics is important, and how ethics can be used for decision-making. Students who participate in the program will be able to implement these concepts in their daily lives and future work environments. This is the first year JA Excelling through Ethics will be implemented in the Vermillion School District. JA Excelling through Ethics is a key priority for Junior Achievement of South Dakota during the 2008-09 school year, and will help bring ethical education to over 5,000 high school students across the state. Junior Achievement is the world's largest organization dedicated to inspiring and preparing young people to succeed in a global economy. Through a dedicated volunteer network, JA provides in-school and after-school programs for students which focus on three key areas: entrepreneurship, financial literacy and work readiness. Today, 140 individual JA offices reach more than four million students in the United States, with an additional 4.3 million students served by offices in 118 other countries worldwide. For more information, visit www.ja.org. Junior Achievement will use a pre-developed curriculum designed to teach South Dakota students that ethical behavior is essential to their futures. Business executives interact with students in the classroom, with the goal of creating a community business and education partnership. Each classroom volunteer will attend a 30 minute Web site conference call training session before spending an hour with students discussing work and life experiences. Classroom teachers will also attend a brief training session, and will prepare the students about basic ethics prior to classroom volunteer teaching.