Enhancing Mindfulness and Well-Being in Higher Education
Barker, R.K., Tuominen, L.P., Larson, M.R. et al. Enhancing Mindfulness and Well-Being in Higher Education. Int. Journal of Com. WB (2021).
Director Randy Barker, Program Manager Lori Tuominen, and all current members of the Advisory Board (Mimi Rapley Larson, Mary Lee-Nichols, Gloria Eslinger, KP Patterson, and Shevaun Stocker) published a paper in May, 2021. In it, they describe the history up to and including the creation of the Pruitt Center, as well as why Director Randy Barker saw the need to create a unique PERMANENT Model of Well-Being.
Systemic Social and Emotional Learning: Promoting Educational Success for All Preschool to High School Students
Mahoney, J. L., Weissberg, R. P., Greenberg, M. T., Dusenbury, L., Jagers, R. J., Niemi, K., Schlinger, M., Schlund, J., Shriver, T. P., VanAusdal, K., & Yoder, N. (2020, October 8). Systemic Social and Emotional Learning: Promoting Educational Success for All Preschool to High School Students. American Psychologist. Advance online publication.
Joseph Mahoney is a faculty member in the psychology department at UW-Superior and a senior research scientist at the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL). He has presented with the Pruitt Center staff on the topic of social and emotional Learning and we value his academic contributions.
Putting Mindfulness and Well-Being into Practice Through Campus Employment
Krisi (KP) Patterson, director of campus recreation and member of the Pruitt Center Advisory Board, earned her MS in Recreation Management from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. Her capstone was on the topic of implementing mindfulness and well-being in student employment.
Role of Higher Education Post Pandemic: Helping Students Develop Self-Management Skills
Saundra Schrock is the CEO and co-creator of Levelhead and Levelhead-Ed, and has been a partner of the Pruitt Center since 2018.
Levelhead is an app company based in Arizona that has worked in the past with corporations wanting to improve the well-being of their employees. The company wanted to expand into the higher ed arena, thus Levelhead-Ed. The app has a 12-week Learning to Thrive program, with short (3-5 minute) daily exercises for students to listen to and learn about habits of positive psychology. Students may then begin incorporating these skills into their lives from the following ten categories:
- Gratitude (the foundation emotion)
- Focus and attention
- Stress and anxiety
- Your happiness quotient
- Meaning and purpose
- “Stop and smell the flowers”
- Building relationships
- Your personal practice.
Saundra’s paper highlights how UW-Superior students benefitted from using the Levelhead-Ed app.
Three Case Studies: Integrating Mindfulness-based Micro-Lessons into Higher Education
Saundra Schrock is the CEO and co-creator of Levelhead and Levelhead-Ed, and has been a partner of the Pruitt Center since 2018. Saundra’s paper from June, 2020, is a white paper capturing case studies from three different semesters:
- Case Study 1, covering the Spring of 2019
- Case Study 2, covering the Fall of 2019 (including one Criminal Justice class from UW-Superior)
- Case Study 3, covering the Spring of 2020.
UW-Superior had a large contingent involved in Case Study 3, incorporating Levelhead into nine classes (with six professors in various departments – one in social work, two classes in teacher education, two classes in legal studies, two classes in criminal justice, and one class in health and human performance), two sports teams (men’s and women’s soccer), and one intramural student worker group.
Approximately 300 students were involved in this effort, which was the largest cohort Levelhead-Ed had ever launched on a single campus in one semester, and the first time they had ever included student-athletes. A tenth academic class (psychology) was added when the move to distance learning happened in March, 2020.
This case study became interesting in an unexpected way as UW-Superior maneuvered (along with the rest of the world) from in-person learning to remote learning and how it affected the students who were participating in the Levelhead-Ed program, either as part of their curriculum, with their athletic team, or as a student employee.
A Guide to Incorporating Social-Emotional Learning in the College Classroom
Stocker, S.L. & Gallagher, K. (2017, October). A Guide to Incorporating Social-Emotional Learning in the College Classroom: Busting Anxiety, Boosting Ability. Presented at the 16th Annual Conference on Teaching, hosted by the Society for the Teaching of Psychology, in San Antonio, TX.
Shevaun Stocker is the associate dean of academic affairs, faculty member of the psychology department, and member of the Pruitt Center Advisory Board. Her paper on social and emotional learning gives practices specific to learning in higher education.
- Positively Superior, April/May 2021: Welcoming Well-Being
- Next Level Podcast, March 2, 2021: Interview with Pruitt Center Director Randy Barker
- Duluth News Tribune, February 18, 2020: Treat yourself: Duluth experts talk self-care + mental health
- University of California, Berkeley, Greater Good Science Center, January 11, 2019: How Colleges Today Are Supporting Student Mental Health
- Duluth News Tribune, November 6, 2018: Twin Ports higher ed counselors help students in stress-filled times
Helpful information from leaders in the field
- Jim Dan Hill Mindfulness & Well-Being Collection
- Action for Happiness
- Arizona State University Center for Mindfulness, Compassion, and Resilience
- University of California-Berkeley Greater Good Science Center
- University of Wisconsin-Madison Center for Healthy Minds
- UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center
Other tools and resources for meditation and mindfulness
- Ways to Be from A to Z, written by the Pruitt Center’s Lori Tuominen
- Insight Timer
- Mindfulness in the Time of Coronavirus: New Meditation Tracks to Help You Cope
- Movement of Spiritual Inner Awareness
- Calm.com and the Do Nothing for 2 Minutes tool
- Finding the Space to Lead
- GPS for the Soul
- Guided Meditations from Tara Brach
- Ten Percent Happier and the Ten Percent Happier Podcast
- UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center Free Guided Meditations