CMU Students and Staff Logged 1 Million Minutes of Meditation

Logo with the Carnegie Mellon mascot dog in a award cup, celebrating the meditation achievement.
Carnegie Mellon

One million minutes makes for a lot of meditation. Carnegie Mellon University students and faculty have collectively logged that much time meditating thanks to a huge campus initiative.

In 2018, the university teamed up with meditation app Headspace to give free access to all students, faculty, and staff. As a result, 4,000 people enrolled in the app’s program and logged over 90,000 hours.

Alongside its promotion of Headspace for private use, the university also incorporated the wellness practice into both its curriculum and extracurricular offerings. CMU has an in-person, guided meditation weekly. Students can also enroll in classes centered on a variety of subjects, including relationships, mindful living, and stress management.

Graduate student Octavio Mesner lauded CMU’s integration of Headspace and its benefits for students, faculty, and staff.

“I really appreciate the little tips the app provides while I’m meditating,” said Mesner, who meditates in the morning before diving into work on his dissertation. He also said the practice “helps me find stillness when life feels chaotic. I’m learning how to prioritize my time better, too.”

Other universities have started to copy CMU. At MIT, students can attend yoga and meditation sessions in private rooms on campus, thanks to YesPlus, a student organization dedicated to wellness.

The University of Minnesota likewise created mediation rooms inside student housing, while the University of Vermont has an entire residence hall dedicated to wellness and offers private sessions.

While universities seem to be leading the charge on incorporating meditation into people’s daily lives, it’s a practice from which everyone can benefit.

According to the Mayo Clinic, meditation helps promote feelings of calm and peace that lead to better overall emotional and physical health.

And it doesn’t just help while you’re doing it, either. The benefits continue throughout your day and even in the way you live your life. It can help you with stress management, reduce negative thinking or even ease the symptoms of medical conditions, like anxiety, depression, or chronic pain.

If you’ve ever considered meditation, take a cue from the people of CMU and start logging those hours.

Shea Simmons Shea Simmons
Shea Simmons is an Atlanta-based writer who has written about everything from whether Crisco is a good moisturizer to how to KonMari your space. Her work has appeared in Bustle, My First Apartment, and Make It Grateful. Read Full Bio »

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