UCCS places second in the 9th annual Business Ethics Case Competition

uccs team


Eight southern Colorado colleges and universities competed on UCCS campus for the 9th annual Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative at UCCS Case Competition on Friday, October 25. A record-46 students participated in the case analysis among three tracks: undergraduate 2-year, undergraduate 4-year and graduate. Participants formed teams of two or three students and each group had access to faculty advisors for counsel.

Students traveled from across southern Colorado to present their case recommendations to a panel of judges, made up of business professionals from Colorado Springs and around the U.S. Each presentation required stakeholder assessment, ethical reasoning and business decision-making skills.

The undergraduate 2-and-4-year teams were tasked with resolving an incident with Atek International, a government contracting firm who just discovered that their new employee posted sensitive company information and politically-charged opinions to a personal Facebook page.

The students addressed a tricky multilevel managerial situation involving social media use, company nondisclosure policies and communication guidelines. Students also provided social media guidelines for Atek International to prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future.

The graduate teams offered recommendations to University Hospital, a research hospital that realized 100 of its patients were recently exposed to prion disease, which is a deadly condition similar to mad cow disease. Graduate students presented their resolutions, recognizing the predicament between disclosing information that could save lives or concealing information and saving the organizations’ reputation.

“Many of the students worked on their cases between midterms, other classwork and work obligations and all of the teams represented their school with professionalism,” said Tracy Gonzalez-Padron, director, Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative at UCCS. “Each student demonstrated an understanding of principle-based ethics and decision-making in business – something employers will notice!”

The competition concluded with an awards reception and dinner in the Upper Lodge where business judges, faculty advisors, UCCS College of Business administration, case competition teams and their guests recognized the 2019 Case Competition winners:

Undergraduate 2-Year Track

  • 1st Place: Pueblo Community College - Persephone Haskell, Sandrah Burrier, Zebulen Garcia; Faculty Advisors: Tony Mitchell and Renee Gust
  • 2nd Place: Pikes Peak Community College - Sarah Bardo, Sheyenne McGhee, Jillian Wood; Faculty Advisors: Konrad Schlarbaum and Bruce McCluggage

Undergraduate 4-Year Track

  • 1st Place: Western Colorado University - Ian Wilson, Audrey Coffey, Evan Leathers; Faculty Advisors: Michael Vieregge and Jeff Dykes
  • 2nd Place: University of Colorado Colorado Springs - Nathan Sanders, Brad Baker: Faculty Advisor: Sloan Gonzales

Graduate Track

  • 1st Place: Western Colorado University - Christina Bruno, Robby Brower, and Kenny Middleton; Faculty Advisor: Jeffery Dykes
  • 2nd Place: University of Colorado Colorado Springs - Nicole Tugg, Jess Clute, and Jessica, Ekman; Faculty Advisor: Meghan Stidd

Students represented eight southern Colorado institutions, including: Adams State University, Colorado State University-Pueblo, Fort Lewis College, Odyssey Early College, Pikes Peak Community College, Pueblo Community College, UCCS and Western Colorado University.

The judging panel consisted of 12 business members. The majority of the panelists were from the Colorado Springs community:

  • Patrick Arbuckle, Huginn(S4)
  • Caitlin Campbell, Tower Financial Partners
  • Lori Coughlin, Peterson AFB
  • Kim Dushinski, Premier Roofing Company
  • Dana Hagood, USAA
  • Jacque Jewell, FedEx Services
  • Liz Moore, UCCS College of Business retiree
  • Henry Eric Peitz, Arbitrator for the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority
  • Craig Ritza, Buckley Air Force Base
  • Otto Sunday, United States Air Force
  • Karen Watson, MileHigh Fleet Solutions, LLC
  • Matthew Whitaker, Image Owl, Inc.

“We are very proud of this year’s case competition teams,” said Eric Olson, interim dean, UCCS College of Business. “As a College, we are delighted to promote these important discussions on our campus and across southern Colorado. A special thank you to all of the participating schools, the business judges and the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative at UCCS for making this year’s competition a success.”


The Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative at UCCS is a resource for principle-based ethics education, serving students, educators, and business community. The UCCS College of Business is one of eight original participating schools in the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative Collegiate Program that now includes ten participating business schools and one law school. Since 2016, the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative at UCCS has partnered with schools of the Southern Colorado Higher Education Consortium to expand principle-based ethics education. College presidents select one faculty member to be an Ethics Champion for their campus. For more information, visit https://businessweb.uccs.edu/resources/ethics/

The UCCS College of Business was established in 1965 and has more than 1,300 undergraduates and 350 MBA and distance MBA students. The College of Business and Administration awards the Bachelor of Science in Business and Bachelor of Innovation degrees. The Graduate School of Business Administration awards the Master of Business Administration and Master of Science in Accounting degrees. More than 10,000 alumni of the College of Business live and work around the world. For more information, visit https://businessweb.uccs.edu.

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