This panel will present lived experiences and views of three faculty members who participated in the Building Just Communities Grant. This presentation details the wide impact of that grant and its expansion to nurture and support college students and faculty of color at five diverse institutions. Presenters will address the following questions: How do we, as teachers, become centered and remain grounded in the face of dehumanizing ideologies and practices, limited resources, and devalued presence? How do we negotiate/manage our vulnerability and be authentic as persons of color, while forging bonds and honoring identity with students of color without excluding others? How do we create contemplative healing communities and develop partnerships on and off campus, and why is this important? They will offer suggestions and strategies for how this kind of community can be established, deepened and strengthened using spoken word, role play and contemplative practices.


Dr. Renée A. Hill is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at Virginia State University in Petersburg, VA. Hill is the director of the Oasis, the mindfulness/meditation center on campus, has taught courses on the Philosophy of Compassion and the Philosophy of Peace, and infuses contemplative practices throughout all of her courses.


Stephanie Briggs, assistant professor English, Community College of Baltimore County, utilizes arts-based practices to foster community, social action, and compassion among students. She facilitates the Contemplative Community Circle for faculty/staff and received a Center for Contemplative Mind in Society’s Building Communities Grant: “Practical Empowerment: Building Contemplative Communities With Students of Color.”


Dr. Michelle Chatman is Assistant Professor in the Crime, Justice, and Security Studies program at the University of the District of Columbia. She integrates jazz, mindfulness, and contemplative writing into her courses restorative justice and urban inequality. In 2017, Dr. Chatman became a Research Fellow in The Robert Wood Johnson Interdisciplinary Research Leaders (IRL) Program. Her research focuses on the integration of mindfulness and restorative justice as a means of addressing violence among African American youth.


Please indicate your top three workshop choices on your registration form. You will be attending two 90-minute workshops in the afternoon as part of the Mindfulness in Education Symposium.

Super Early Bird: $125 (Before Feb. 22)
Early Bird: $175 (Feb. 23 – Feb. 28)
Regular: $250 (March 1 – March 9)


March 17 @ 13:00
1:00 pm — 2:30 pm (1h 30′)

Workshop Room

Michelle Chatman, Renee Hill, Stephanie Briggs