Thank you for your interest in Palm Beach Atlantic University’s interdisciplinary and research-oriented master’s program. Unlike many practitioner-oriented programs, such as most M.B.A. or Organizational Leadership/Studies programs, PBA’s M.S. in Ethics & Organizational Behavior with a Certificate of Graduate Studies in Leadership is focused on critical evaluation and learning centered around theories and their underlying philosophical assumptions generally, and the implications of implementing theory in practice within the organizational and social context. This research-based program focuses on the entire spectrum of human beliefs, attitudes, intentions, and behaviors. You will have an opportunity to expand your thinking on difficult issues affecting society and organizations today by understanding the problems of theories often taught as factual and by expanding your awareness of philosophical assumptions, logical fallacies, and the use of cleaver language and other spurious arguments that influence people. The culminating event in our program is the Capstone Project or Thesis, which is intended to prepare you for new and exciting opportunities.
Our program is uniquely focused on creating logical and innovative thinkers who can see through the fog and hear through the noise of societal influences that are often presented as truth yet are inherently flawed or deceptive. We believe we are creating the thinkers that the university was intended to develop. Our students ask the big questions. Is a certain theory valid, logical, and cogent? What are the philosophical assumptions of these theories and the methodology used to develop and research the validity of such theories? How are these concepts put into practice and what are their real purposes? How do these practices affect the individual and are the results commensurate with both the theory and the philosophies that undergird the theories? How and why did these theories come to exist and why? How do the resulting practices affect people of different ethical positions and is the influence on society for the good of both the individual and the organization? These are questions of science, politics, and philosophy that are aimed to confront the most controversial issues of our day. Our students are developed to ask these and other challenging questions, scrutinize arguments, and to not skirt respectful debate for comfort.
It is our intention that our students become aware of things they would not otherwise see and be able to articulate alternative and logical arguments based on a new way of thinking that seems to be diminishing in our society today. Our M.S. in Ethics & Organizational Behavior stands apart from trade-oriented programs in schools of business, health sciences, law, and education. Our students are not taught to simply understand the tools or laws they can utilize in the organizational context, but instead, they are encouraged to critically analyze problems, scrutinize possible solutions, and develop new ways of thinking and unique solutions that benefit both the individual and the organization. Our students do not seek to simply understand certain “expert” and theoretical solutions. We encourage our students to search for the often hidden problems, to search for the truth and the good, and to cultivate resolutions to difficult and challenging problems facing our society and the world today.
We hope you will consider the extraordinary journey that our M.S. in Ethics & Organizational Behavior offers. However, as I often remind my own students, this journey, as it is philosophically oriented, comes with some risk. This is the risk that you will learn new things and consider issues in new ways in which you cannot undue. You will see the world around you in a new light, understand your own bias, and see things you could not see before. The risk is that this new understanding cannot be “unseen.” Ignorance may be bliss to some, but we aim to remove our students from the shadows that obscure truth and to offer them a fresh way of thinking that can then be applied to help create solutions to the paramount problems facing organizations and society in general. If you have questions about this unique program, please feel free to reach out to me at Kirk_Mensch@pba.edu.
Kirk G. Mensch, MBA, PhD’s
Phone: (717) 376-9784
Professor and Director of Graduate Programs
The Catherine T. MacArthur School
Palm Beach Atlantic University