Patricia Saunders Earns PhD and Publishes Book on the Maharishi Effect

Patricia Saunders Earns PhD and Publishes Book on the Maharishi Effect

MIU doctoral graduate Patricia Saunders

The cover of An Antidote to Violence

Patricia speaking at the 2020 Graduation Awards Ceremony

Patricia Saunders received her PhD degree during the 2020 MIU graduation ceremonies and an Outstanding Student Award in the Maharishi Vedic Science department.

Patricia studied classical music in London and began her career as a concert pianist and composer. But when she learned the Transcendental Meditation® technique, she decided to devote her life to teaching it. She taught the TM® technique in her hometown in England and also worked on projects for the UK Transcendental Meditation organization.

When Maharishi announced the Invincible America Assembly in 2006, Patricia came to Fairfield to join. When she arrived, she was impressed with the quality of teaching and knowledge in the Maharishi Vedic Science department, so in 2007 she began her master’s degree in Maharishi Vedic ScienceSM.

“I gained such very deep insights into Veda and Vedic literature from the professors that I really never looked back,” said Patricia. Her PhD dissertation researched and documented her experiences of higher states of consciousness while reading the forty branches of the Vedic literature in sequence, as designed by Maharishi, in conjunction with her practice of the TM and TM-Sidhi® programs during the Invincible America Assembly.

While working on her thesis, Patricia also coauthored the book An Antidote to Violence with Barry Spivack. The book examines 20 peer-reviewed studies of the Maharishi Effect and how it reduces societal tensions.

Patricia explained that “The book has three aims: to inspire scientists to inspire scientists to investigate collective consciousness, to inspire them to examine the research that shows how the TM technique and its advanced programs influence the collective consciousness, and to encourage governments to create the Maharishi Effect in their own countries.”

Although Patricia has given up her musical career, in her free time she has composed several orchestral and choral pieces which were performed in Iowa. She also had two of her plays performed in Fairfield, while another received an honorable mention in a Writers Digest competition for stage plays. In addition, her poetry has been published in several online journals.

Mohamed Hassan—From Architect to Software Developer

Mohamed Hassan—From Architect to Software Developer

MIU student Mohamed Hassan

With Adjunct Professor Jim Bagnola during a Leadership for Technical Managers class

Mohamed (front center) in his first class, the Science and Technology of Consciousness, with students and teaching assistant Christine Albers (top center)

MIU student Mohamed Alfidil Hassan left his war-torn country of Sudan in 2016 to seek a better life and career opportunities in the US. Even though he had a green card and a degree in architecture, he couldn’t find a job in his field, so he took a customer service position in the airline industry working 14-17 hours a day to support himself and his family.

Then a friend told him about MIU’s new Master’s in Software Development program and encouraged him to apply. Mohamed knew he had to earn a US degree to find a better job and, after doing some research, he realized the IT job market offered great opportunities. MIU’s master’s program does not require experience in software development, and Mohamed passed the aptitude test for problem solving skills and enrolled in the summer of 2019.

“Software development is nice, it’s interesting and beautiful, and I enjoy working with computers,” he said. “The fun part is that it is challenging, and I love dedicating myself to something that stimulates me intellectually.”

Mohamed only knew about meditation from movies and TV shows, but when he learned the Transcendental Meditation® technique he realized it helps him with fatigue and exam anxiety.

“Meditating for 15 or 20 minutes settles me down and helps me focus,” said Mohamed. “I think it will help when I graduate, move to a new city to start a new job, and have to learn everything about a new company and environment.”

Mohamed feels confident he can find a job because he is gaining the most up-to-date knowledge in software development.

“To study for one year and get an interesting and challenging job that starts at $65,000 instead of $40,000, work 8 hours a day versus 17 hours, and have paid holidays and health insurance, that’s great!”

Mohamed is finishing his courses in August and will be applying for JavaScript developer positions.

MIU Offers Three New Online Degree Programs This Fall

MIU Offers Three New Online Degree Programs This Fall

The audio/video booth in Dalby Hall is now equipped with sophisticated equipment for live-streaming online courses

The number of students in online programs is expected to continue growing

Students in an aromatherapy class (pre-COVID-19)

Creative writing students with faculty member Leah Waller (pre-COVID-19)

MIU is launching three new master’s programs this fall, bringing the total number of degrees available online to 12.

The management department is presenting a master’s degree in leadership and conflict resolution, which will aim to train students in leading one’s workplace toward a harmonious and conflict-free environment. This program is unique because it integrates inner transformation with practical strategies to resolve conflicts that arise daily in the workplace and elsewhere.

Another graduate program launching in the fall is an MS in aromatherapy, which will integrate the science of essential oils with Maharishi AyurVeda® and modern medicine. The program will focus on the therapeutic uses of essential oils and will be the only MS in aromatherapy in the country that is accredited by one of the six official regional accrediting bodies. One of the goals of the program is to have students understand common diseases from the modern medical perspective.

“Most people who come for alternative therapies, including Ayurveda and aromatherapy, have chronic diseases and are looking for complementary and alternative options,” said Dr. Kormal Marwaha, co-director of the program. “This makes it really important for any wellness consultants, including aromatherapy practitioners, to understand the diseases their clients have and then make appropriate recommendations.”

One more graduate program being introduced is the low-residency MFA in creative writing, which will offer tracks in fiction, poetry, and creative non-fiction. The program places a strong emphasis on the writer and the exploration of the creative process. Furthermore, a strong lineup of published authors will mentor students, including numerous local writers and MIU alumni.

“We’ve been seeing a surge in our online enrollment in recent years, and we’re expecting a further increase—upwards of 57 percent—for this fall,” said Rod Eason, vice president of enrollment. “Leading the way are our highly popular programs in integrative medicine, which bring together the most ancient and the most modern approaches to health and wellness in a complete educational package, suitable for existing healthcare professionals as well as those who may wish to launch upon a new career.”

In addition, the Cinematic Arts and New Media Department has just launched an online version of their BA program. The program is focused on helping students build a portfolio and find internships. Specializations include cinematic arts and film, digital music and sound design, and digital arts.

The Transcendental Meditation® technique and Consciousness-BasedSM education play important roles in all of these online programs. Visit MIU online learning to learn more about these and other programs.