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Mindful Professor Training Program


The Mindful University Project is offering a Mindful Professor Training for teaching faculty and course instructors at the University. This program is rooted in cutting-edge research and practices and aims to offer participants a variety of tools to access ways to return to calm, be present with themselves and others, utilize mindful leadership skills, enhance teaching effectiveness, as well as learn what actions they can take to support students’ well-being.

The Mindful Professor Training lasts three months, and includes 7 hour-long workshops and 2 one-hour mentorship coaching sessions.

Spring 2024 Schedule

Spring 2024 Training will be held on the following dates in-person on the River Campus:

Thursdays from 12:30-1:30 PM

  • February 1st, 15th, and 29th
  • March 7th and 21st
  • April 4th, 11th and 25th
  • May 2nd


Since the COVID-19 pandemic, faculty and student-facing staff have been vital supports for students. In fact, according to a Healthy Minds Network study conducted in 2020, 80% of faculty and staff reported having conversations with students regarding their mental health, yet only only 30% stated that they had received training on how to support student mental health. Of respondents, also 21% of them reported that supporting students in emotional distress had taken a toll on their own mental well-being1

Research has found that stress and burnout can impact teaching in a variety of ways, including:

  • Can hamper development of relationships and rapport with students
  • Difficulties with providing academic and social supports for students, especially diverse student populations
  • Providing less clear instruction

Can decrease one’s ability to create a safe and inclusive learning environment 2,3.


Mindfulness can support leaders in being more fully present in the moment with what is going on in their inner and outer worlds, as well as be more thoughtful in their responses rather than operate with heightened habitual reactivity 4,5. In the classroom and with students, presence-based faculty are consistently self-aware, manage emotions under pressure with poise and confidence, understand the people they teach, recognize their impact on others, as well as lead with empathy and compassion6. Faculty with these characteristics are more fully present, engender trust, and can increase their positive impact, personal resiliency, reduce stress and anxiety, and support academic flourishing in those that they teach7.

Substantial research has shown not only that mindfulness interventions for teachers can enhance their mental health and provide a more positive classroom environment, and also mindful leaders are deemed as more effective as a result of their ability to exhibit deep presence, self-awareness, emotional stability, and care and concern for the well-being and success of others6. However, limited research exists regarding the impact of mindful-based leadership programs in an academic environment8. While some studies are based in an academic setting with leaders, this is the first known study to investigate the impact of a mindfulness-based leadership program in an academic environment with University professors on faculty well-being, confidence in and comfort with supporting the well-being of students, as well as efforts to promote conditions for well-being in the classroom8.

Participation in our training would be extremely valuable both to inform a future larger-scale mindful leadership training at the University as well as help fill the gap in research in this field.

What You Will Gain

In this transformative experience, you will be equipped with mindful leadership practices and education on supporting students’ mental well-being to assist you with being more fully present, engage in mindful communication, and create a mindful classroom environment to allow your students to thrive. 

✔️ An opportunity to take your teaching to a new level of effectiveness, focus, calm, and clarity as well as improve your overall well-being!

✔️ Armed with new insights and hands-on practices, you will show up in new ways that will support student academic achievement and well-being

✔️ A Mindful Professor sticker to put on your office door!

✔️ A certificate of completion

✔️ Access to a community of mindful professors and monthly continuing education opportunities

Benefits for the Larger Community

✔️ Help to fill a gap in knowledge about how mindful leadership practices can impact faculty mindfulness, well-being, stress, self-compassion, compassion fatigue, and teaching practices, but also improve the well-being and academic flourishing of students. 

✔️ Foster a culture of mindful presence on campus

✔️ Individual transformation that will have a spillover effect on students 

✔️ Form the beginning of a slow professor movement at the University and allow the University to take meaningful action to better support professor well-being and create a healthier institution


Register for the Mindful Professor Training Program

* indicates required

Please direct any training related questions to:

Rebecca Block (

Health Promotion Specialist – Student Well-Being, UHS Health Promotion Office

  1. Boston University School of Public Health, Mary Christie Foundation, the Healthy Minds Network, and Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation. (2021). (rep.). The Role of Faculty in Student Mental Health. Retrieved from 
  2. Becker, E. S., Goetz, T., Morger, V., & Ranellucci, J. (2014). The importance of teachers’ emotions and instructional behavior for their students’ emotions – An experience sampling analysis. Teaching and Teacher Education, 43, 15– 26.
  3. Watts, J., & Robertson, N. (2011). Burnout in University Teaching Staff: A Systematic Literature Review. Educational Research, 53:1, 33-50.
  4. Brendel, W., Hankerson, S., Byun, S., & Cunningham, B. (2016). Cultivating leadership Dharma: Measuring the impact of mindfulness practice on creativity, resilience, tolerance for ambiguity, anxiety, and stress. Journal of Management Development, 35(8), 1056-1077.
  5. Lippincott, M. (2018). Deconstructing the relationship between mindfulness and leader effectiveness. Leadership & Organization Development Journal, 39(5), 650-664.
  6. Archuleta, K., Jennings, C. T. & Cunliff, E. (2019). Mindfulness at Metropolitan Universities. Meditation and Mindfulness in Adult Education, 2019(161), 33-43.
  7. Schwind, J. K., McCay, E.; Beanlands, H., Schindel, L., Martin, J., Binder, M. (2017). Mindfulness practice as a learning-teaching strategy in higher education: A qualitative exploratory pilot study. Nurse Education, Today, 50(1), 92-96.
  8. Lomas, T., Medina, J. C., Ivtzan, I., Rupprecht, S., Hart, R. & Eiroa-Orosa, F. J. (2017). The impact of mindfulness in well-being and performance in the workplace: An inclusive systematic review of the empirical literature. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, 26(4), 492-513.
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