About Mindful UNC
Mindful UNC has a history rooted in the study of contemplative practices in higher education. Many of the founding members come out of the professional society, the Association for Contemplative Mind in Higher Education (ACMHE), where academics come together to “transform higher education through the recovery and development of the contemplative dimensions of teaching, learning and knowing (contemplativemind.org).”
One outcome of the ACMHE was the creation of an annual mid-Atlantic regional conference, started in 2015. UNC hosted the conference in 2018, Contemplative Practices for 21st Century Higher Education (contemplative.web.unc.edu), with attendees from across North America, as well as from Europe and Australia. During the conference, many interested UNC faculty and staff shared their passion for different areas of contemplative practices and their application to teaching, research and service. After the 2018 conference, the core group of UNC attendees and additional interested UNC faculty and staff came together to create a space to explore these ideas in community. Mindful UNC is the culmination of this idea.
A steering committee formed with the intention to create a community of practice that invites UNC-affiliated groups and individuals to share contemplative practices through a central hub, including Internet-based resources, community learning gatherings, and unique events.
Tina Craven, MPH Practicum Coordinator at UNC-CH Gillings School of Global Public Health. Interests include the intersection of mindfulness and creativity, and utilizing mindfulness as tool to support mental health.
Suzanne Kennedy, PhD, NBHWC-certified health and wellness coach, Administrative Director, Children’s Research Institute, School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics. Interests include promoting children’s health, and developing individual as well as leadership skills to promote wellbeing among peers and colleagues in the workplace.
Robin Sansing, Clinical Instructor at UNC-CH School of Social work. Interests include utilizing mindfulness practices in the classroom as well as applying mindfulness to social justice change and activism.
Millie Tan, Undergraduate Coordinator for Political Science Dept. Interests include restorative yoga, meditation, and practicing mindfulness – learning to pause and be present on daily basis.
Meenu Tewari, Associate Professor or economic development and global studies in the Department of City and Regional Planning. She is interested in understanding processes that foster inclusive, equitable, locally rooted and income distributing forms of development. She is also interested in the role of empathy and contemplative practices in creating connection and positive change.