Younes smelling neroli flowers in Algeria before collecting them for distillation

Preparing his model for the runway to present his collection at the 2014 EcoJam fashion show in Fairfield

Working on his portfolio at the MUM art studio


Playing music with his brother Amine and Karen Aoki, both MUM faculty

MUM student Younes Kouider has always been an artist. Taking after his father, who illustrated children’s books, Younes started making art as a young child. He also has been playing music most of his life. His family practices the Transcendental Meditation® technique, so Younes came to MUM at 18, following his older brother Amine.

When he first enrolled at MUM in 2010, Younes pursued a BFA and graduated in 2014. Then he returned home to Algeria to manage the family’s essential oil manufacturing business while his parents worked in Tunisia. For three years, Younes learned about botanicals and oil distillation and even introduced soap-making to the business.

In 2017 Younes learned about MUM’s new MA in studio artprogram, which allows students to focus on artistic exploration and create a substantial body of quality work. When his parents returned to Algeria to take over the business, Younes was able to come back to MUM in February, 2018.

“I love this school so much,” said Younes. “There is something magical about it. And the experience of Transcendental Meditation helps so much in the studio. When you have deep meditations in the morning and in the afternoon, your artistic quest is so much easier. Your emotions are settled, your senses become more refined, and you know exactly what to do. It’s effortless.”

Younes is grateful for his art teachers who are guiding him in creating a consistent portfolio, which he can use to apply for an MFA program. In his free time, he enjoys playing music with his brother Amine and other musicians.

Younes has also been involved with Enlightened Leadership International, the next generation of leaders to support the TM organization, and he hopes to participate in charitable work on behalf of the organization.