When it comes to business and technology, ethics awareness is a good investment. In today’s highly globalized marketplace, ethics plays a major role in business decision-making where a single misstep in judgment can have consequences across the enterprise. Integrity is so vital to our business that we want students to be thinking seriously about ethics before they enter the workforce – especially in the increasingly complex landscape of technology and innovation.
This is where Lockheed Martin’s Ethics in Engineering Case Competition comes into play, taking place this year during national Engineers Week. On February 23-25, 2021, 26 colleges and universities, each represented by a two-student undergraduate team and accompanying faculty, will present their solutions to a fictional case involving ethical, business and engineering dilemmas with a focus on supersonics/hypersonics. Last year’s case focused on artificial intelligence, machine learning technology and large-scaled data analytics.
“This was a valuable opportunity for our students to apply their engineering skills and ethical intuitions in a dynamic environment,” said Ryan C. Cooper, faculty advisor for the University of Connecticut team, at last year’s competition. “I think the students really benefitted from rising to this challenge.”
The annual event compels students to think about the importance of ethics in the workplace and the various dilemmas that can arise, especially in the multifaceted and fast-paced world of technology. As college students ready themselves to enter the workforce, exposing them to real-life ethical dilemmas allows them to develop their own ethical decision-making processes and ultimately search for a strong company culture that mirrors their own value systems.
While this year’s case competition will be held remotely due to pandemic restrictions, the competition normally takes place at Lockheed Martin’s Center for Leadership Excellence in Bethesda, Md. and includes hands-on opportunities for visiting students to learn about the company and its technologies. In addition to attending tours at the Global Employee Operations Center (GEOC) and the Global Vision Center (GVC) in Crystal City, Va., students are encouraged to learn about the role of ethics at Lockheed Martin by participating in an Ethics Awareness Training session, networking with Lockheed Martin engineers and leaders, and visiting a booth showcasing common ethical issues in the business space.
In light of this year’s case topic on supersonics/hypersonics, the event will include keynote speaker Robie Samanta-Roy, Lockheed Martin’s VP Technology, Government Affairs, who will discuss the company’s role in hypersonics as industry and academia continue to push the boundaries on hypersonics development. The event will also include a Q&A session that allows students to ask questions from a panel of Lockheed Martin employees and recruiters.
The case competition is just one example of how Lockheed Martin demonstrates the importance of voicing one’s values in the face of intricate ethical dilemmas in the engineering and business spheres. We look forward to welcoming this year’s participants and engaging with them as they present their creative solutions.