Harvard Grads Sign MBA Oath

A New York Times article from May 29 titled “A Promise to be Ethical in an Era of Immorality” has generated quite a bit of buzz over the past few days.

According to the story, nearly 20 percent of this year’s graduating class have already signed “The MBA Oath,” a voluntary student-led pledge that the goal of a business manager is to “serve the greater good.” It also promises that Harvard MBA’s will act responsibly, ethically and refrain from advancing their “own narrow ambitions” at the expense of others.

You can read the whole story here. The following is a statement from Max Anderson, one of the student organizers of The MBA Oath, in response to the slew of comments the story has generated.

“Some of you have said that it is the system that is corrupt and we can’t change it. Maybe you are right, but we are actually looking for long-term systemic change. We know this isn’t the total answer. Far from it. There are no silver bullets. But we have to start somewhere. Why not start by stating our values and aspirations. Sure it will be hard to keep these. But if it weren’t hard it wouldn’t mean anything.”

For anyone put off by the fact that the article says nearly 20 percent of the class has signed, meaning 80 percent did not, Anderson clarifies that they just launched this initiative last week and they graduate next week, but the numbers are already closer to 30 percent.

Watch your back, Gordon Gekko!


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