Business Program

FASPE changed the way I look at business ethics. Doing good is a duty we all bear. FASPE was one of the most influential events of my professional life.
Jean-Marc Chanoine
2016 FASPE Business Fellow

FASPE is an intensive, two-week study program in professional ethics and ethical leadership. FASPE is neither a Holocaust studies course, nor a genocide prevention program. Rather, the curriculum is designed to challenge Fellows to critically examine constructs, current developments and issues that raise ethical concerns in their professions in contemporary settings in which they work.

FASPE Business challenges its Fellows to recognize their responsibility to act as ethical leaders in their business careers. FASPE begins by examining the actions and choices of German businesses and business executives in enabling and executing Nazi policies. FASPE then draws on this historical example to help Business Fellows grasp their role and responsibility as individuals with influence in their communities and to lead them to identify and confront the ethical issues currently facing businesses and business professionals.

Each year, FASPE Business awards fellowships to 14 to 16 graduate business students and early-career business professionals. Fellows spend two weeks in Berlin and Poland, where they visit key sites of Nazi history and participate in daily seminars led by specialized faculty. The program couples the power of place with academic rigor and many informal opportunities for creative exchange.

FASPE draws on a large pool of applicants, whose diverse backgrounds and interests enrich discussions both inside and outside the seminar room. Business Fellows travel with Journalism and Law Fellows, allowing them to broaden their understanding of the role of professionals over shared meals and activities and in several interdisciplinary seminars. FASPE Fellowships are fully funded so that financial ability does not affect participation.


FASPE Business applicants must be actively pursuing a career in business and fit into one of the following three categories: 1) be enrolled in an MBA or MSc program at the time of their application; 2) have completed their MBA or MSc degree between May 2019 and January 2021 and be working as a business professional; or 3) have completed an undergraduate degree in any field between May 2016 and May 2018 and be working as a business professional.

FASPE seeks Fellows who are about to embark on their career as professionals, are interested in engaging in discussions with their co-Fellows and faculty, and who have the intellectual and emotional maturity to unpack difficult and controversial issues responsibly and respectfully in small group settings. FASPE selects its Fellows on the basis of their academic background, personal and professional experiences, capacity for leadership and ability to contribute to the program and the alumni community. All applications are welcome and reviewed.

(Application deadline: January 27, 2021)

Changes to the 2021 Fellowship

In the interest of both ensuring the safety of all participants, and creating a meaningful, enriching program that allows Fellows to experience the full FASPE curriculum, including the power of place and the impact of being a member of an in-person learning community, we would like to announce the following changes to the 2021 FASPE Business Fellowship:

The program will launch with a virtual workshop in the spring, and culminate with an intensive week in Germany and Poland in the fall, visiting key historical sites in Berlin and Krakow, as well the site of the Nazi extermination camp Auschwitz.  Fellows will participate in rigorous seminars led by experts in their respective fields and examine the roles their professional counterparts played in Germany and elsewhere from 1933-1945, and then draw on historical, cultural, philosophical, literary and discipline-specific sources to explore the ethical issues facing their fields today.

Virtual Workshop: 
FASPE Business will begin with 3 consecutive days of virtual workshop on the following dates:

May 23 – 10:00am-4:00pm EST

May 24 – 10:00am-4:00pm EST

May 25 – 10:00am-4:00pm EST

These interactive and dynamic sessions will provide the opportunity to learn about the history of the Nazi-era from experts, to understand more deeply the significance of the sites we will visit, and to engage in challenging and thought-provoking discussion of contemporary ethical issues with Fellows, faculty, and guest speakers.   The 3-day workshop will be followed by once-a-month 90 minute sessions on the following dates:

June 28 --10:00-11:30am EST

July 22 -- 2:30-4:00pm EST

August 18 -- 10:00-11:30am EST

September 21 -- 2:30-4:00pm EST

*Participation in the virtual programming is required in order to participate in the in-person travel portion of the program.

In-Person Programming:  
Travel to sites of historical significance in Germany and Poland will take place October 9-17, 2021.

*All participants must have received the COVID-19 vaccine prior to travel.

APPLICATION DEADLINE EXTENSION:  Applications will be accepted until 11:59pm EST on Wednesday, January 27, 2021.  Applicants will be notified of their status by the beginning of April.

To learn more about the application process please go here.

To view photos of the 2019 Business program and to read about the experience, please go here.

FASPE Business Fellows examine topics such as:

  • the complicity of German businesses and business executives in the design and execution of Nazi policies
  • legal compliance and corporate social responsibility vs. ethical behavior
  • the meaning of ethics in business in the absence of a code of conduct
  • the ethics of technological and business innovations
  • navigating multiple loyalties to stockholders, customers, employees, vendors and communities
  • recognizing multiple motivations and ensuring that motivations align with personal and institutional morals
  • tactics to address ethical issues within larger corporate institutions
IG Farben factory near Auschwitz.German Federal Archive / BArch, Bild 146-2007-0058 /
CC-BY-SA 3.0

FASPE Business Fellows now hold positions at major financial institutions, global businesses, non-profit organizations and consulting firms. Through their shared FASPE experience, Fellows form long-lasting relationships and deep bonds that grow over time. Business Fellows participate in formal and informal networks that provide support throughout their careers.

The Business program was initially developed in consultation with faculty from the University of Virginia Darden School of Business and the FH Wien University of Applied Sciences for Management & Communication in Vienna.

For more information on how to apply to FASPE Business, please click here.