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Mindfulness Day with the Dean

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is “the awareness that emerges through paying attention on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgementally to the unfolding of experience moment to moment” (Jon Kabat-Zinn). Mindfulness meditation practices aim to enhance participants’ awareness of body sensations, sounds, thoughts, and emotions while continually focusing on the breath (Lam, Kolomitro & Alamparambil, 2011). Mindfulness training works, at least in part, by strengthening the brain’s ability to pay attention. Recent neuroscience studies have found that practicing mindfulness meditation on a regular basis actually changes the physical structure and functioning of the brain.

Why Mindfulness for Social Work Students?

Mindfulness practices can help you to be a better social worker by increasing your self-awareness, self-care, and self-compassion and help you acquire two key engagement skills: listening and empathy. Specific mindfulness practices have also been shown to promote empathy to decrease implicit biases.

Join Us

College of Social Work Interim Dean, Dr. David Dupper, will facilitate an experiential workshop that will discuss barriers and myths about mindful meditation, as well we a discussion of cutting-edge research on the science of mindfulness practices with a focus on the mechanisms in the brain that are impacted by mindful meditation. Students will actively participate in a number of mindfulness practices including mindful breathing, body scan, eating meditation, and walking mediation.

The workshop will be held on March 26 from 12pm-4pm at the Nashville campus. Preregistation is required. RSVP to Tiffany Toney at

Lunch will be provided. Please notify Tiffany Toney if you have any dietary restrictions.

Field students: With your field instructor’s prior approval, your attendance may count as field hours.