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Faculty lead major demonstration project at American University in DC
by Patricia Boland

The M.U.M. Review    Translate This Article
8 February 2006

Five hundred students at American University in Washington, D.C., and surrounding campuses will participate in a landmark two-year demonstration and research project to create coherence in the collective consciousness of the Washington, D.C., area, and to scientifically document the effects of the Transcendental Meditation program on brain, behavior, and health of college students.

John Hagelin, Ph.D., director of the Institute of Science, Technology and Public Policy (ISTPP) at Maharishi University of Management, is spearheading the project, which has been made possible through a $1.2 million grant to the Maharishi University of Management Research Institute from the Abramson Family Foundation, the David Lynch Foundation, and private donors.

'This high-profile project is sure to ignite a grassroots brushfire among college students nationwide. Many of today's students are seekers of truth and lovers of peace. We will give them the deep experience of truth and peace that they have been looking for,' Dr. Hagelin said.

Many of the students participating in the demonstration project were inspired to learn the Transcendental Meditation technique following the recent speaking tour of University Trustee David Lynch, Dr. Hagelin, and Fred Travis, director of the University's Center for Brain, Consciousness, and Cognition.

The principal investigators of the project are Robert Schneider, M.D., of the University's Institute of Natural Medicine and Prevention, and David Haaga, a professor at American University.

The research will measure blood pressure, health behaviors (smoking, alcohol, and substance usage), psychological stress, emotional intelligence, and academic achievement. Subgroups of students will be studied for brainwave coherence, cognitive intelligence, and, for those with diagnoses of attention deficit disorder and attention deficit with hyperactivity disorder, improvement in attention span.

'Cardiovascular diseases, and many other conditions, are serious concerns for adults, and they begin in childhood, in youth,' Dr. Schneider said. 'One of the main values of this study is that we are looking at true prevention in early adulthood, to prevent problems such as cardiovascular disease occurring later in life.'

Co-investigators from the University are Dr. Travis, Sanford Nidich, and Carolyn King. Additionally, Sarina Grosswald, Ed.D., an expert in cognitive learning and a director of the Maharishi Peace Palace in Bethesda, Maryland, will join the research team. Dr. Grosswald has extensive experience researching the Transcendental Meditation program in schools.

Mario Orsatti of the ISTPP and Linda Mainquist, adjunct faculty at Maharishi University of Management, are directing the teaching of the Transcendental Meditation technique for the 500 students in conjunction with the Bethesda Maharishi Peace Palace.


Copyright © 2006, Maharishi University of Management

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