Claudia Calero is a Clinical Psychology Masters student with the SMBI Program at TC. She received a Bachelors in Religious Studies with a Minor in Psychology from the University of South Carolina. Originally from Nicaragua, she has lived in the United States for 32 of years. She has worked as a Family Care Worker for Child Protective Services of San Mateo County in the San Francisco Bay Area prior to joining the United States ARMY and moving to South Carolina.
Hayley is getting her Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology and Education with a Concentration of Spirituality Mind Body. She is also interning at NYU Langone Medical Center administering examinations to patients/research participants and doing research for Alzheimer’s Disease. Hayley previously taught students the art of storytelling to develop their personal narratives, socio-emotional learning and communication skills. Hayley has a mindfulness practice through yoga, meditation, and art and is looking forward to continually cultivating the mind body connection.
Sungmi Hong is a long term meditation practitioner. She is an artist, an art educator and a freelancer writer. As a writer, she has interviewed spiritual leaders and meditation teachers from different religious and non-religious traditions in USA. Her monthly column has been published in the magazine called Modern Buddhism since 2012. She received her B.F.A. in illustration from School of Visual Arts, her M.A. in art and art education from Teachers College, Columbia University. Her scholarly interests focus on aesthetic experience of young children, holistic education through integration of art, mind-body and spirituality.
After working several years as a preschool teacher, Kathleen loves play therapy, laughter, and evoking the inner child as methods to unleash one’s intuition and to connect to universal source! She is currently pursing her Master’s in Clinical Psychology and Education within the Spirituality Mind Body Institute (SMBI). She has a long-standing fascination with esoteric traditions, healing crystals, and intuitive experiences. She also holds an internship with SMBI hosting events and guest lecturers and is a great enthusiast for Jungian Psychoanalysis.
Marguerite Pintauro is a student in the Spirituality Mind Body Institute Master’s Degree Program in Clinical Psychology and Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. She received a BS in Psychology and Visual Arts from Fordham University. Her research interests focus on child studies, centering on attention problems associated with ADHD, ASD, learning disabilities and other psychiatric disorders. She has a passion for developing complementary programs for children focused on spirituality, yoga and mind-body based practices that help supplement and reduce the use of psychiatric medications. She is a volunteer on the milieu therapy staff for Mount Sinai St. Luke’s Hospital’s Comprehensive Adolescent Rehabilitation and Education Service (CARES), assisting adolescents struggling with mental health and substance abuse issues.
Carly is a first year Master’s Student in the Clinical Psychology and Education program at Columbia’s Spirit Mind Body Institute (SMBI). She received her undergraduate degree from SUNY New Paltz in Psychology and Disaster Studies. Her research interests include integrating the use of spirituality and contemplative mind-body techniques in both clinical practice and special needs therapies for children. She currently is a Research Intern in NYU’s Integrative Health Department examining the effects of meditation and mindfulness on stress levels in youth recovering from traumatic brain injuries and their caregivers.
It has been obvious to me throughout my life that connecting to the world on a universal energy level has both guided and enlightened me. As a main organizer and facilitator for Hearing Voices Network of NYC, one of my personal and professional goals is to normalize hearing voices, seeing visions, intuition, and other unusual or extreme experiences, which I believe can be an extension of the human experience. I look to connecting with those who are willing to roll up their sleeves and have open conversations about the vast dimensionality of our human experience and the universe at large.
It’s fitting that I’m writing this on Mother’s Day, my favorite day of the year; a day that I get to celebrate my good fortune of being the mother of three amazing children. My name is Jan Fielder and I am incredibly fortunate to have had the opportunity to be a stay at home mom for the past 23 years! My children have been my greatest source of joy and have taught me life’s most important lessons. What a journey it has been and continues to be. I am a Life and Wellness Coach. I work with individuals and families who want to mange their stress and anxiety without medication by incorporating mindfulness and spiritual practices into their lives. It is my vision that one day spiritual healing will be an acceptable alternative therapy for those suffering from mental illness. It is my passion to help people find inner peace so they can be their best self and face each day with hope. I was drawn to this program because of the struggles my family endured while attempting to get appropriate help for my son who struggled with emotional problems. After years of traditional therapy including alarming amounts of medication with little or no relief, I finally realized that there was nothing a pill or talk therapy could do for my son. I realized that the healing had to come from within. By incorporating mindfulness practices into his life, my son has been able to find peace and healing. His story, our family story has inspired me to give hope and healing to those who may be suffering as we did for so many years.
More about me…I love to hike and cross country ski. I’m committed to overcoming my fear of mountain biking this summer!! I feel most at peace in the mountains. I believe that truth is power, that we are all here for a special purpose and that each person we meet is our teacher and student. I can’t wait to meet all of you!!
Lauren Foley, originally from Rhode Island, is a first-year master’s student, specializing in General Psychology and concentrating in Spirituality Mind Body in the department of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Teachers College, Columbia University. She received a BA in Political Science from Villanova University in 2011. Her interests are in holistic wellness through the integration of mind, body, and spirit, including such practices as yoga and meditation as well as nutrition.
In addition, Lauren enjoys traveling and the heightened awareness that results from experiencing other cultures, their cuisine, and their way of life. Working as a tour guide, Lauren spent one year in Barcelona, leading American students throughout Europe. She also spent five months living with a family in Salamanca, Spain learning Spanish and taking courses at the University of Salamanca. She now inhabits New York City’s Upper West Side and is looking forward to furthering her knowledge and understanding of spirituality and psychology at TC Columbia’s Spirituality Mind Body Institute this upcoming summer.
This program starts a new chapter for me. I have been searching for what the next phase of my life would be for quite some time and when I read about this Master’s Program last winter, I knew I had found my next step. I first came to New York City 17 years ago after graduating from Harvard with a BA in Psychology. I came to the city with the naivete of a small town girl from NH. But, with the grit and exuberance of a young person, I embraced city living.
I pursued a career in finance for much of my 20s, with a front row seat to the incredible volatility of the Internet craze, along with the utter heartbreak of September 11 2001. Despite that heartbreak, 2001 was a transformative year for me. I got married, left Wall Street and attended Parson’s School of Interior Design. My primary occupation for the past 10 years has been raising my children, Caia and Quinn. I also served on a non-profit Board, a responsibility that was rewarding both personally and professionally. My job description as a parent is to raise happy, conscious citizens of the world. I have found a wonderful intersection between parenting and mindfulness, and it is this intersection that allows me to be present with my family in the midst of this busy life in New York City.
Hello! My name is Angelica and I am thrilled to be an integral part of the Spirituality Mind Body network at Columbia! My journey into understanding the mind-body link began at a very early age, and was originally instilled in me while in utero by my intuitive and free-spiritedmother. It has been said that I am aptly named, as I experienced a spontaneous healing miracle. For the past 6 years I have been pursuing careers as both a Licensed Master Aesthetician, and more recently, a Licensed K-12 Health Teacher. My aesthetics career satisfies my creativity, and being a health teacher has awarded me the opportunity to mentor several adolescents and support the development of finding their innermost self. In teaching Health Education, especially at the high school level, one cannot delve very far into the issues and topics of health without addressing mental health and the emotional and spiritual landscape. It has become my goal to learn counseling techniques to foster and facilitate others to seek a life of meaning and balance at an early age, and to inspire others to live in a higher state of consciousness for a more purposeful, enlightened world. Through the practices of stilling the mind, meditation, and visualization, I have learned to trust and live by the intuitive information that springs forth from these practices. The more I listen to the thoughts and feelings that surface within, the more authentic my life becomes. Beautiful scenery and music is what recharges and nourishes my soul. Pursuing the Clinical Psychology and Counseling Spirituality Mind-Body Masters Degree at Columbia is without a doubt, a time for evolution, growth, introspection, and community. I very much look forward to the time, space, and opportunities this program provides to forge meaningful connection with individuals of like-mind, heart, and spirit! Namaste!
Julia is a feminine coach, celebrating and empowering feminine essence in women. She is a founder of HappyFeminine programs, JourneyDance Guide and certified teacher of Art of Feminine Presence practices. Combining movement, awareness and leadership practices, she empowers women courageously step into their feminine essence and to become authentic leaders of own life.
Julia has been working on coaching individuals in personal leadership development on a daily basis, integrating spiritual growth into their lives and creating long-term results.
At the same time, she is a world traveler for 10 years, visiting and volunteering in countries around the world. Creating communities of powerful authentic leaders around the world.
Our youngest child left home for school and then the dog died; the nest was empty and my career as a full-time, stay-at-home mom had ended. What in the world was I going to do to fill my days? It wasn’t too hard to figure out. I started practicing yoga, and became a yoga teacher. Yoga introduced me to meditation, and after several years I became a qualified Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction teacher. I am interested in the intersection between yoga, meditation and mental health, and went on to get a degree in mental health counseling. I also like to hike, swim, cook, and travel – especially in the company of family and friends. I look forward to being part of the SMBI community, and to continuing to explore how yoga and meditation can help therapy patients reduce anxiety and depression.
Jennifer Drapkin, M.S., is a third-year doctoral student in clinical psychology at Teachers College, Columbia University. She received her B.A. in psychology from Yale University, her M.S. in journalism from Columbia School of Journalism, and her yoga instructor certification from Laughing Lotus College of Yoga in New York City. As writer and editor, Jennifer has been published extensively in Psychology Today, The Smithsonian, and Mental_floss Magazine. As a yoga instructor, she's taught at the Urban Yoga Foundation and in New York City public schools, specializing in kindergarten through 5th grade. Jennifer believes that a good life should be divided between enjoying the world and saving the world, if you're doing too much of either one, then you're missing something. She's thrilled to have the opportunity to study the connection between mind, body, and spirit at Columbia. Jennifer hopes that by building better inner worlds, we can build better outer worlds, too.
Tomas is a PhD student in Dr. Lisa Miller’s Spirituality and Psychology Lab. His research is in curriculum development, focusing on teaching spirituality from a scientifically grounded perspective. Tomas previously worked as Lab Coordinator for the Social Psychology department at the University of Sydney, and tutored social psychology and the psychology of learning at UCLA, where he majored in psycholobiology and marine biology. In his earlier life Tomas also competed as a professional skimboarder, and spent two years solo traveling through India, Africa, Asia, Europe, Australia, and South America.
Javad Ahmadi is a first year Doctoral student in Art/ Psychology with focus on Jungian Dreams. He received his masters in Clinical Psychology From Teachers College in May 2015. He is interested in Healing effects of Darkness , Spiritual poetry of Rumi and Jungian Dream Therapy. He is a poet and a writer. He lives in Connecticut with his two kids Amin and Kiana. You can find more about Javad on his blog Call me Javad.
Clayton McClintock, M.T.S., is a third-year doctoral student in clinical psychology at Teachers College, Columbia University. He received a B.A. from Dartmouth in English and an M.T.S. from Harvard in psychology and religion. His primary research interests include spiritual practice, pathways in mind-body medicine, and mindful engagement.
Larissa Portnoff is a first-year doctoral student in clinical psychology at Teacher’s College, Columbia University. Larissa graduated from University of Denver in 2011 with a B.A. in Psychology. Her undergraduate research looked at the MAOA gene in juvenile female offenders with Dr. Julia Dmitrieva. In the years following graduation she worked at UCLA as a research assistant to Dr. Miklowitz, Dr. Feusner and Dr. O’ Connor examining severe mental illness in youth and adult populations. In the CHAMP clinic she examined the psychoneuroimmunology of pediatric bipolar disorder and how neural correlates of psychosocial treatments respond in the prefrontal cortex and limbic systems.
Currently, she plans to continue using novel techniques to understand the factors that pervade severe mental health disorders and the role of spirituality in youth. When are developmentally sensitive periods? What makes a child prone to risk or resilience for psychopathology? How does this fit into the context of the socio-cultural environment? Presently, she is the managing editor for the APA journal Spirituality in Clinical Practice and developing a psycho-spiritual intervention centered on interconnectedness for the SMBI Wellness Center.