For-Profit Ethics Case Summary

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What are the ethical boundaries of a sponsorship of a nonprofit organization and a for-profit organization? Case study 3-D presented by Patterson & Wilkins (2014, p. 70) is concerned with the University of Phoenix’s sponsorship of nonprofit organization that provide free preschool for children living in poverty. The University of Phoenix maintained a close relationship with the nonprofit organization and was heavily promoted as part of the sponsorship agreement. Many people question the ethical implications of partnerships between nonprofit and for-profit organizations, and many have particularly criticized the University of Phoenix for various reasons. Micro Issues First, the University of Phoenix typically caters to low-income students,…show more content…
The current political climate has many citizens who dislike corporate influence and distrust large organizations in general. For example, a sponsorship from a Wall Street business for an education-based nonprofit would likely be distrusted. Social responsibility plays a large role in the appropriateness of sponsorships. Patterson & Wilkins (2014, p. 72) give the example ethically questionable situation of Budweiser sponsoring football tailgating at a university. The sponsorship would not be appropriate since it could lead to underage drinking and drunk driving. Non-profits should do in-depth research, such as reading news articles and viewing advertisements, of the for-profits that want to sponsor them by checking their mission statements, business practices, and their overall public image. Phoenix University is not an inherently bad corporate citizen, but it would be a stretch to consider them the model corporate citizen. The main issue is the lack of social responsibility in their targeting of a specific demographic using the sponsorship like an advertisement for a service that many low-income families will not be able to afford (Patterson & Wilkins, 2014, p. 59). Motives matter since they influence how a corporation will conduct business and the overall character of the corporate
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