Skip to content
Contact USI

Getting to know Jill Oeding

August 2, 2018

She comes equipped with an ethical toolbox, courage and a passion for helping others. Dr. Jill Oeding, assistant professor of business law, teaches students the importance of thinking before acting using a series of questions for ethical decision making. Let's get to know more about Oeding.

Tell me a little bit about one of your favorite research projects

I have research projects on ethical decision making, and those have been my favorite, because I can bring what I've learned into the classroom. One had to do with regret, and how regret plays into a person's ethical decision making, and whether or not they think they'll regret a decision in the future. I share a real story with the classroom.

One time I was at a park, and this man had a heart attack. I had to think "Am I going to try and save this man's life?" I knew that if I didn't, I would regret it for the rest of my life. I had two or three seconds to make that decision. It's a powerful story to bring into the classroom, because I now have nothing to regret.

Something else I teach is having an ethical toolbox. I want students to have questions ready in the forefront of their minds when they face an ethical dilemma. They may only have 2-3 seconds, like I did, to contemplate a decision.

Some of my questions are, "Would I regret this?" "Would I regret not doing this?" Another one is, "Am I treating someone else how I want to be treated?" A student favorite is, whether or not they would want that action posted on the front page of the news. That's the one that usually sticks with them.

What tips or tricks have you picked up from your job?

Students need to be interested and engaged. I use the Socratic method of teaching, where I ask questions. I teach through asking questions. I also have a rule that they can't be on their cell phones. If I see them on their cell phones, I will actually take off points. That works really well because I have students that'll come up to me and say, "I didn't realize how much that cell phone was hurting me in other classes."

What's the most important personal attribute that you feel you bring to your job?

I believe courage is important, because of the world we live in. Sometimes we need to do things differently than what others are doing. Sometimes people are doing the wrong thing. It takes a lot of courage to be willing to be different.

What are three interesting facts about you?

I love to travel. I love to talk about my Christian faith.

I love to bake.

What topic could you spend hours talking about?

My faith; I could talk about it for hours.

How many national parks have you been to? Have you kept track?

We haven't really kept track. I would say around 20. I love Yellowstone, that's my favorite. Once we visited Yellowstone we were hooked. We love wild animals.

What is one goal you want to accomplish in your lifetime?

One of my goals is to do a mission trip overseas. I'd also like to be a speaker on parenting.

How many kids do you have?

I have two, and I've made a lot of mistakes, but I have great kids. I feel like people are confused about parenting today. They think that if you just give, give, give to kids, that's the best thing for them, and it's not. I think that less is more and it's important to teach them to be responsible, considerate of others and to have a strong work ethic.

What is one thing everyone is obsessed with that you just totally don't get the point of?

Social media. I don't do social media. I'm just too busy.

What's your favorite activity to do locally and why?

I love to volunteer and help people in need. I help at Uncharted International and at the rescue mission. My husband and I just started volunteering at the Youth Care Center. So many of those kids have had such a different life than what my kids grew up with. They just need someone to care about them. A passion of mine is helping youth.

Recent Stories