The Best Course of Action

Louis Peter D'Elia, Richard Gunter, Timothy R. Wiseman


This case describes the ethical and legal challenges facing Dr. Caroline Webster, Director of Graduate Business Programs at MNU.  She was facing one of the more unpleasant tasks of her job in determining how to proceed with a complaint by one of the university’s master’s students by the name of Bob Golden.  Although a solid and intelligent student in his own right, Bob continuously challenged his grades, causing some faculty and administration to grow weary of his seemingly constant complaints. Dr. Webster wistfully recalled no less than a dozen unrelated prior instances.  However, this current complaint was beyond Bob’s normal grievance.  During a conversation with Dr. Webster, Bob claimed that the instructor for his current course, Adjunct Professor Joe Thomas, had a criminal past.  After a quick and rather basic search, it turned out that Professor Thomas had indeed been convicted of a felony approximately a decade and a half earlier.  Naturally, Dr. Webster took the matter up to Dr. Donald Hess, Dean of the MNU Business School, who was now faced with the decision of whether or not he needed to terminate the employment of Adjunct Professor Joseph Thomas.  Collectively and apart from the grading complaint, they also had to decide on the proper course of action as a follow-up to Bob Golden’s allegation.  The class which Adjunct Professor Thomas taught was the final and capstone class of the MBA program at MNU.  Ironically, the class was one with a considerable focus on ethics and morals in business. 

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