Selwyn Students Soar in the Ethics Olympiad

Published on Friday, 21 May 2021, 3:03 p.m. Print Article

For the first time in Selwyn’s history, we entered a team in the Ethics Olympiad and we are very proud to announce that they came an impressively close second place. 

Congratulations to our ‘ethletes’ Poppy Jones, Evelynn Turin, James Boland, Sean Hollier, Luke Cameron-Smith and Linda Pham.

As a result, Selwyn College has earned the right to compete in the final of the International Ethics Olympiad, which is taking place at the end of July and will feature teams from all over the world including countries like Hong Kong, China, Australia and Canada.

The team’s support teachers are Lawrence Mikkelsen and Aliesha Simmons.  Aliesha watched the event via Zoom and says that our Selwyn ethletes ‘were phenomenal to watch - so perceptive, eloquent, and collaborative’. One of the judges was lost for words and kept repeating "Wow. That was so good". They have been told that the session was one of the strongest any of the judges had ever been to.

They were given 8 ethical cases to discuss in preparation, including topics such as  The Korean Pop Industrial ComplexThe Tiger King, The Ethics of Truth and Public Safety during the COVID-19 Pandemic,Dating After Prison, Gaming platforms and shocking speech, and they  worked extremely hard in four 3 hour intensives which certainly paid off for them as the day was extremely challenging. There were four heats where each team received a case and ethical question. They had to give a 5 minute developed response including the key moral considerations, potential approaches based on various ethical frameworks, before attempting to reach a well-developed answer to the question - the aim was to reach the "correct", ethically sound answer. The opposing team offered a constructive critique followed by a response, and finally they faced a 7 minute period of questions from the adjudicator.

Once again - well done to our team of talented ‘ethletes’!

Left to right: Luke Cameron-Smith, Sean Hollier, Evelynn Turin, James Boland, Linda Pham, Aliesha Simmons, Lawrence Mikkelsen and Poppy Jones (absent from photo)

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