High School Students Deliberate Moral Issues


Farragut High School Takes First place in Annual Ethics Bowl

The UT Department of Philosophy hosted again this year the Tennessee Regional High School Ethics Bowl, an outreach event launched five years ago.  Held at the Crowne Plaza in downtown Knoxville, the spring 2014 Bowl was the largest yet, drawing close to twenty teams from regional high schools to compete in a full day of deliberation, discussion and presentation on a wide range of moral issues.  Judges included UT faculty and graduate students as well as distinguished members of the Knoxville community, including Police Chief David Rausch.  Coached by teachers from their high schools, the teams devote several months to preparation before the competition.  UT graduate students provided training and support for the local high school coaches.  The 2014 winners were:  Farragut High School (first place), Austin East High School (second place) and Oak Ridge High School (third place).


Austin East takes Second Place honors

Ryan Windeknecht, a lecturer in philosophy, and Don Dillard, a graduate student, collaborated to provide excellent organizational leadership for the 2014 event. The Tennessee Regional High School Ethics Bowl was considered a huge success because it afforded an opportunity for roughly a hundred high school students, and many of their parents, to engage in philosophically disciplined moral reflection and discussion.

The annual event attracts bright high school students to UT and to the Department of Philosophy.  And it continues to enrich the high school experience of many students, some of whom now enjoy access, as a result of the program, to pilot philosophy courses in their high school curriculum.

The UT Ethics Bowl is made possible by the support of the UT Humanities Center and private gifts.

Ethics Bowl Third Place winners – Oak Ridge High School