Fulbright Project: Self Care and Creative Practice

Week 1: Cork City, Ireland

Douglas Street

I’ve come to Cork, Ireland for 6 weeks to work with the Crawford School of Art and Design, the MTU academics and a variety of Master’s students to learn and discuss how self care can be a creative practice. Teaching Well-being pedagogy, resilience theory and meditation and mindfulness practices we are exploring the art of being whole, and present. And, investigating rejuvenation, relaxation and replenishing teaching practices and self care commitments. What a beautiful community and city! So peaceful here ( and I love the rain). Everyone I’ve met is friendly and grateful for the “art of the pause” that can allow learning and unlearning. I am working with 30 faculty members and staff, and have 4 small groups that meet weekly, a weekly open meditation practice and a variety of class lectures across the schools and programs. I’m even going to give a careers talk for graduating MA students. Feeling very at home.

Each morning I walk the labyrinth at Saint Fin Barre’s Cathedral

Labyrinth St. Fin Barre – 1000 years old
Cathedral St. Fin Barre
Walking along the River Lee to the BlackRock Castle Observatory
Nano Nagle Place Garden
View from the meeting room MTU Crawford

Feeling honored to be here on a Fulbright, to offer these ideas and practices that I’ve been learning and sharing, absorbing and being changed by.. for almost 40 years. Am so grateful to Louise Foott, Head of department of Arts and Health Education at MTU Cork. Between us we came up with this project, and she has worked tirelessly to bring me here. And in-between the coffees, visits to the English Market, the teaching and meetings this first week of the project, I walk along the river feeling “grand”.

#fulbrightspecialist, #fulbright, #exchangeourworld #mindfulness #positivepedagogy #positiveeducation #contemplativepractices #Prattinstitute

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About Rhonda Schaller

Rhonda is a long time meditator, artist and educator teaching visualization, mindfulness and meditation as life and art practices for over 30 years. She is a certified visualization meditation and qualified Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction teacher. She is a Visiting Associate Professor and Assistant Vice President for Resilience, Wellness & Well-being at Pratt Institute; founder of the Meditation Incubator project, and a Made in NYC fellow. She chairs the Pratt Resilience, Wellness and Well-being Council, founding chair of the Mindfulness Initiatives in Student Affairs Committee, and Mindful Pratt community. Rhonda was recently awarded a Emily Hall Tremaine Grant for her Mindful Collaboratory project, a national training and study for artists and arts leaders in meditation and mindful community building. She was also awarded a Fulbright Specialist grant to bring contemplative and wellbeing pedagogy into faculty teaching and learning at CIT, Ireland. She is the author of Create Your Art Career (2013, Allworth Press), Called or Not, Spirits are Present (2009, Blue Pearl Press), and contributed chapters for The Mindful Eye: Contemplative Pedagogies in Visual Arts Education (2018, Common Wealth Pub) and Starting Your Career in the Fine Arts (2011, Allworth Press). Her artworks are in the permanent collections of Memorial Art Gallery University of Rochester and Dartmouth University's Medical School Art of Healing Gallery.
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