A new center at Cal Poly Pomona will offer students an opportunity to take a deeper look at important issues facing Californians.
The California Center of Ethics and Policy (CCEP) was launched with the financial support of a university emeritus faculty member and will be fully operational in spring 2019.
The CCEP held its first event on Oct. 9 – an election fair that included a voter registration drive and representatives for and against propositions on the Nov. 6 ballot.
Philosophy Professor Michael Cholbi, director of the CCEP, said that while many universities have similar centers, Cal Poly Pomona’s is distinct in that it focuses on ethics and political issues in which California has a role to play. The center plans to tether its program to a different theme each year.
For the 2018-19 academic year, the focus will be on healthcare access and healthcare justice. The 2019-20 session will grapple with war and the military in California culture and the economy.
“We want to try to help students and other members of our campus community be more engaged and think more deeply about the ethical issues we face,” Cholbi said. “We feel the center fits well into the university’s Strategic Plan and has the potential to create students who are effective leaders and reflective citizens.”
Components of the program include a semester-long three-unit advanced seminar, in which students must apply to be fellows, and a student conference that will feature original research. Experts also will come to campus to give public lectures related to the seminar’s focus.
“What we’re doing is a strong fit for the direction the university is heading,” he said. “Of course, we need to train people to be engineers and for other professions, but we also need to teach them to be democratic members of society.”
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