Students encouraged to become integrous leaders and 'integrity tigers'

The Integrity Roundtable Luncheon was hosted by CEO of Go Media Co. Gregg Ostro and the Honors College.

Photos by Ralph Freso / Slideshow

Ethical in academics, honest in personal work, intentional with friends.

These are some of the examples Grand Canyon University students gave when asked how they practice integrity at an intimate luncheon with Gregg Ostro, president and CEO of Integrity Summit and GO Media companies.

After several days of events promoting honesty and genuineness in all aspects of life for Integrity Week, the Honors College wrapped up the campaign with a discussion between Ostro and students on what they learned and practical ways to live out integrity.

 “For me, this is a labor of love, to carry the torch of integrity to tomorrow’s generation,” said Ostro. “It’s not just understanding the definition of the word but understanding how it is operational.”

Ostro engaged students with a questionnaire on integrity displayed in various aspects of their life. He presented different academic, professional and personal scenarios in which students reflected on how they would react and respond. It allowed them to understand how well integrity is incorporated in their work and what steps may be necessary for them to practice increasing integrity in their lives.

Gregg Ostro encourages students to become "integrity tigers."

“My goal is having them think tangibly about it – what are you going to do today? It is the key to happiness, opportunity and great relationships,” he said.

In a world of artificial intelligence, caring about integrity is a big issue. Resources that quickly and efficiently complete one’s work for them are readily available everywhere and at all times. It’s becoming difficult to avoid the temptation of relying on these online platforms. That is why the biggest currency one can have is integrity, Ostro told students.

“You are not going to get to where you want to be without being trusted, and you cannot be trusted unless you have integrity. The change starts with yourself because you can only control your integrity.

"Be an integrity tiger."

Sophomore Honors College student Parker Pastrell shares with the group what integrity means to him.

When creating his Integrity Summit, Ostro asked, "How do we bridge to human beings?" He thought it was necessary to create an integrity mascot that would leave individuals motivated to do and be more. After researching animals, he discovered tigers are often recognized as the most noble and true to their character. From that came the integrity tiger, Ostro explains.

"Walk the talk of integrity, even when others do not. Be an integrity tiger," Ostro said.

After reflection time, Ostro followed up with more questions, but this time he had students think about moments when they experienced a lack of integrity shown to them. Students shared with one another and then discussed with the whole group.

The exercise allowed students to see and learn how a lack of integrity can have an impact on more than one individual and can affect more than just the immediate subject at hand.

“When you reflect on how you’ve been done wrong, you also learn who you don’t want to become. It comes down to you doing the right thing," he said.

“What are you going to do today to advance in integrity? Who do you want to be?”

Gregg Ostro concludes the luncheon event by stressing the importance of integrity in all areas of life.

Ostro concluded by posing these open-ended questions, encouraging students to leave thinking about the best possible practices to grow integrity and character.

From the Integrity and Character Fair on Monday, when students made their pledge of integrity by signing a banner and networking with a list of departments, to attending various sessions offered daily throughout the week by different colleges, GCU students learned the meaning of integrity, how to practically apply it to all areas of life, and how to practice becoming integrous leaders.

“I feel that they are accepting of what we talked about. They are ready to immerse, learn, grow and be real. They opened up and talked about integrity in their lives and went as far as to make a personal commitment to be better, to have more integrity in their lives,” Ostro said.

GCU staff writer Izabela Fogarasi can be reached at [email protected]

Related content:

GCU News: GCU students sign on to stress integrity in academics, work - GCU News

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