The Belmont Abbey Ethics Bowl Team of Adrianna Hodges, Anastasjiah McGriff, Blake Traylor, Bryanna Farmer, Isabelle Robertson, and Nicholas Oestreich celebrated the North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities’ 50 year anniversary at the annual statewide Ethics Bowl. This year, Belmont Abbey students were invited to discuss environmental ethics with student colleagues and community professionals at the Legislative Complex in Raleigh. 


It is significant to note that the NCICU Ethics Bowl, though a competition in some respects, is aimed at conversation rather than argumentative victory. Teams are judged based on their articulation and application of ethical principles to real-world situations.  Belmont Abbey students received substantial comments from community leaders admonishing their teamwork and professionalism, while helping to contextualize information further.


Belmont Abbey started the weekend with a record of 2-1; we were named the most persuasive team in rounds that discussed religious freedom and deep ecology concepts with William Peace University, as well as hydraulic fracturing with Campbell University. The fourth and final preliminary round challenged students from Belmont Abbey and High Point University to consider the ethical implications of the contested Keystone Pipeline; our students earned one of three ballots and remained within a couple of points on a 90 point scale for a second adjudicator.


Overall, Belmont Abbey successfully led meaningful civic debates about ethical prompts that will be relevant in their lifetimes, while networking with other scholars and community leaders across the state. Students from Wake Forest University and Catawba College were invited to join a final round to consider laws related to the preservation of coral reefs and marine ecosystems.