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Anthropology, philosophy students participate in bioethics competition

The+winning+team+of+the+Bioethics+Bowl+Tournament+receive+awards.
Jack Sarnese
The winning team of the Bioethics Bowl Tournament receive awards.

Students from AACC’s Biological Anthropology course and Introduction to Philosophy course participated in a Bioethics Bowl Tournament for their final on Thursday.

Assistant anthropology professor Amy Carattini and philosophy professor Kevin Murphy merged their courses to host AACC’s first Bioethics Bowl Tournament involving four mixed teams of students from each class.

“[We gave students] these case studies which have no easy answer,” Carattini said. “You think not only as an individual, but as a team. … They, kind of, wrestle with what their individual stances are.”

The competition required students to be well-educated on four topics involving anthropology and philosophy. In each round, the professors would randomly select a question. The two teams discussed their responses, viewpoints and the ethical reasonings behind them.

Murphy said the professors plan to continue hosting tournaments at AACC because “students need more controversy in their lives.”

“It seems like a lot of people are comfortable in their own, sort of, bubble,” Murphy said. “I think the interaction and the learning of things that are controversial forces that bubble to burst … and  confront these really profoundly difficult moral dilemmas. … That’s the whole purpose of a moral dilemma, when your values clash … and there is no good answer.”

Jude Worth, a second-year transfer studies student on the winning team, said “having a space for talking about these hard topics … is really great.”

“You get to test your public speaking skills, memorization, teamwork, you know, [and] working with people that might not share the same views as you,” Worth said. “These are things that you’re going to be doing in life. I think it’s awesome that there’s an opportunity for people to get to try those things.”

Nicolas Carico, a second-year music student and captain of the winning team, said the tournament “was a good experience” and should continue in the future.

“I had a great time,” Carico said. “I think the topics were a very good set for … the anthropology and philosophy class coming together. [There are] ethical considerations surrounding all of these things that relate to anthropology.”

 

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