Koru Mindfulness Class: Learn to Meditate


Koru logo

Many students feel overwhelmed by academic and social challenges, seek tools to calm a racing or ruminating mind, have trouble sleeping, may be overly self-critical, or may simply yearn for more focus and calm in their lives. This term SHAC will offer a class with these students in mind, Koru Mindfulness: Time to (learn to) Meditate.

A Koru (Māori for “loop”) is a spiral-shaped fern frond symbolic for balanced growth and stability. The class offers an evidence-based introduction to mindfulness and meditation skills which can be helpful for students who are feeling stressed and pressured, or who just want to get more satisfaction from their college experiences. Participants will learn a variety of mindfulness skills to practice, both in and outside of this 4-week class, ideally leading to better management of emotional stress and experiencing healthier lives.

How to proceed, if interested:

  • Attend four 75-minute classes in the SHAC Group Room
  • Complete 10 minutes of homework (meditation!) per day
  • Notice what happens

Winter Term 2020 Schedule: 

  •  Section I: Wednesdays, 1:15-2:30pm, weeks 2-5 (Jan 15, 22, 29, & Feb 5)

                Register: here

  •   Section II: Tuesdays, 4:00-5:15pm, weeks 6-9 (Feb 11, 18, 25, & Mar 3)

                Register: here

[Note that 9 spots are reserved for students and 3 for staff and faculty]

For more information contact Betsy at: betsylanegetaz@carleton.edu

History and Research about Koru:

Koru was initially developed and then further refined over 10 years by Holly Rogers, MD; Margaret Maytan, MD; and Libby Webb, LCSW, all of whom work (or have worked) at the counseling center at Duke University, so they understand college students and their experiences.  Please visit the Koru Mindfulness website for more information. 

There have been thousands of studies on the effects of mindfulness and meditation.  Some of these studies seem particularly salient for the Carleton community.  One randomized, controlled study, looked at the effects of the Koru program itself. Findings include medium to large effect sizes on 4 metrics:  mindfulness, self-compassion, perceived stress, and sleep. 

Additional findings (citations available on request) of other recent studies of the impact of brief mindfulness training include:

  • a 2 week mindfulness training was correlated with a 16% increase in GRE reading scores and reduced mind wandering (2013).
  • brief mindfulness training reduced the negative outcomes associated with stereotype threat (2012).  
  • a brief mindfulness meditation practice reduced implicit race and age bias (2015).
  • mindfulness practice reduced aggression in college students (2016).

All these outcomes contribute to the equitable, inclusive, and supportive community we aspire to at Carleton, in addition to increasing every individual’s capacity to better manage stress.