Training of Trainers workshop: strengthening ethics at CUEA
Globethics.net in collaboration with Arigatou International held a ‘training of trainers' workshop from 13-16 March 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya. The training was provided for the staff of the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA), a Globethics.net partner institution and member of the Globethics Consortium on Ethics in Higher Education.
The Training of Trainers workshop started on 13 March 2018 with a conference on 'Integrating Ethics in Higher Education'. Representatives of many other universities from Kenya, including Strathmore University, joined the Conference on Integrating Ethics in Higher Education and expressed their interest in the Globethics Consortium and the Training of Trainers workshop.
During his speech, Obiora Ike, Globethics.net Executive Director, emphasised the role of teachers as a key element to change societies through the education of the next generation—the leaders of the future. He also described the university as a "citadel that builds up culture, humanity, knowledge and civilisation and as an open space for talent, innovation, youth and leadership". He asked how universities could play this role without first integrating ethics in their institutions and teaching.
The CUEA facilities closed during the three-day event and all staff were invited to attend—a total of 120 professionals.
Delegations of students from different departments were also invited to attend the workshop so as to involve all the stakeholders at the university in order to integrate ethics successfully.
The aim of the workshop was not only to reinforce the importance of ethics in education but also to provide the teachers with the knowledge, skills and resources to embed ethics into their teaching methods and to pass the values of their university on to their students.
The team conducting the workshop was composed of Globethics.net experts and a team from Arigatou International led by a training expert from Sri Lanka. This collaboration was very beneficial for the participants because it allowed the team to show the importance of ethics in higher education and also ethics education as a fundamental concept.
Globethics.net experts lead the workshop, which involved questioning the participants' practices and posing ethical dilemmas for them to work on and resolve together. Dr Ignace Haaz, Programme Executive Online Ethics Library and Publications Manager at Globethics.net, set the tone of the event by introducing ‘ethics as a concept' and its importance in education and research. Professor Chidiebere Onyia, Globethics Consortium Steering Committee Member and curriculum developer addressed challenges of staff-students relationship and behaviours.
The second theme of the workshop concerned integrating ethics in the institution. This was conducted by Globethics.net expert, Ms Nadia Balgobin, who spoke not only about the context of education institutions but also of business, as many of the students leaving university go on to set up their own businesses.
This training was the first step in an action plan designed by Globethics.net experts to integrate ethics curriculum at CUEA. Through this exercise CUEA will obtain three beneficial outcomes that will serve to improve CUEA's global ranking and reputation and place it as a leading Catholic University in Ethics in Higher Education in East Africa. These outcomes are:
- The integration of ethics in their academic policies and procedures:
- The teachers and supervisors applying ethics in their teaching courses and research work; and
- Policy-makers designing their education programme in line with their ethics policies.