In light of recent scandals at financial companies, The American College is taking steps to sharpen its focus on ethics.. “For many years the college has looked at ethics as paramount for advisors and agents, and we’ve imbedded that into our curriculum,” says Dr. Laurence Barton, president and CEO of the college. Barton points out that since its founding 1n 1927 as The American College of Life Underwriters, “every graduate has been required to take an ethics pledge at commencement.”In 2001 the college established the James A. and Linda R. Mitchell/American College Forum on Ethical Leadership in Financial Services, an annual gathering for ethics scholars and financial services executives.
“When we hear about one of our graduates who has acted inappropriately or has broken a fiduciary trust, we actually pull their designation and we notify the attorney general and the state insurance commissioner,” Dr. Barton said. “Ethics must be mandatory in every course. By the end of next year there will be an ethics case study in every course at the college.”