An interview by, CHC, CCEP, Chief Engagement & Strategy Officer, Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics & Health Care Compliance Association.
AT: You run an interesting program for business school students at Xavier University in which they spend a week in London and Paris examining how business ethics issues are managed. What was the genesis of the program?
PF: The first thing I’d like to say about this trip is that ethics and compliance (E&C) professionals and their spouses are very welcome to join us on our next 10-day program March 4–13, 2022. E&C professionals, students, and faculty gain tremendous insight into organizations that value values. Our daily briefings offer an excellent introduction to E&C for those new to the field and great benchmarks for corporate comparisons for attendees with more developed programs. After successfully completing the trip, participants receive a Certificate in International Ethics and Compliance from Xavier’s Leadership Center. You can find out more information at www.xavierlondonmba.com. Unfortunately, we aren’t able to make the trip in 2021, but I look forward to returning to Europe in 2022.
The genesis of this trip started after I spent a semester in Vienna as a junior in college and caught the travel bug. Since coming to Xavier in 1983, I’ve visited and led trips to Munich, Japan, Singapore, and now London (30 times) and Paris (14 times). In 2006, I began taking undergrads to London for three weeks each summer. That program was so successful, I started this International Ethics MBA class in 2009.
AT: How has the program evolved through the years?
PF: Originally, I only taught in London over our 10-day spring break, but every year the group wanted to also explore another city, in particular Paris. In 2014, the City of Lights was added to the program. Several Xavier business school faculty members, along with at least one E&C professional who is invited to be our Ethicist in Residence, also participate in the trip. They provide insight during our briefings and facilitate collegial discussions afterward. In addition to briefings at major corporations, law firms, and nongovernment organizations, we have a panel discussion on ethics and compliance at CY Cergy Paris University. I teach a three-day course at that law school’s Master’s in Ethics and Compliance program each December. It’s great to see my French law students again in March and have them socialize with the American business participants.