MBA students initiate Queen’s MBA Oath

Posted on May 13, 2011

As they approach their convocation, 63 members of the Queen’s School of Business (QSB) full-time MBA program vowed to use the knowledge and skills they obtained at QSB to lead with integrity in consideration of the greater good by pledging the Queen’s MBA Oath.

An inaugural Queen’s MBA Oath signing ceremony was held on April 9th, 2011. The Queen’s MBA Oath and ceremony was the result of a grassroots movement started by a group of students from the class of 2011 and is the Queen’s full-time MBA class’ adaptation of the MBA Oath Project, a movement started in 2009 at Harvard Business School.

“The Oath is a voluntary pledge for graduating MBAs to make ethically and socially responsible decisions as we pursue business activities to generate value” says Don Sun, who spearheaded the initiative at Queen’s with the support of the Queen’s School of Business Centre for Responsible Leadership and the MBA program administration.

The MBA Oath Project’s mission is “to facilitate a widespread movement of MBAs who aim to lead in the interests of the greater good and who have committed to living out the principles articulated in the Oath”. The Oath is a way of laying out the principles that MBA ought to stand for and an opportunity for students to make a personal commitment to keep them. The MBA Oath has since spread to many schools around the world including, now, Queen’s School of Business.

“I wanted to have an opportunity to make a public and personal commitment to keep a high ethical and socially responsible standard, as a tool and reminder of our duty to society. I also wanted to see Queen’s School of Business take the first steps to putting an oath of honor in place for its MBA programs” said Mr. Sun, who formed a committee and consulted and rallied his classmates to make this initiative a reality.

The School was tremendously supportive of the students’ initiative. “When a handful of students approached me early in the year about the possibility of an MBA Oath I was delighted and supportive. I knew there would be challenges in rallying the class to make it happen, but they did and with flying colours!” remarked Scott Carson, MBA Program Director.

Participating students vocally pledged the Oath and signed a copy of it and a ledger in a ceremony that took place in Ban Righ Hall at Queen’s University. Students will keep their signed copy of the Oath as a reminder of the commitment they made, and a copy of the ledger will be kept on display at QSB’s Centre for Responsible Leadership.

The ceremony, which was highlighted by an address by Mr. Don Drummond, former Chief Economist of TD Bank, was a great success and was a great way to cap off the year for the soon-to-be MBA graduates.

Event organizers hope that this tradition will be adopted by future graduating MBA classes with the support of QSB’s Center for Responsible Leadership.

Any Queen’s MBA alumni who wish to take the Oath are invited to download a copy of the Queen’s MBA Oath and sign it, as well as sign a copy of the ledger housed in the Centre for Responsible Leadership office in Goodes Hall. MBA graduates may also choose to take the Oath through the MBA Oath website by signing their name electronically as a public expression of their aspiration and personal commitments as a professional manager.


Click here to view a copy of the video shown at the Queen’s MBA Oath ceremony, which includes testimonials from students on why they chose to take the Oath.

Click here to read a copy of Don Sun’s address to his classmates.