Section: Features

From meditation to organization: Mindfulness on the Hill

From meditation to organization: Mindfulness on the Hill

Even as Ohio weather starts to warm up and the end of the spring semester is in sight, students can still make room for mindfulness activities amid busy schedules. Luckily, Kenyon offers many opportunities to practice mindfulness here on the Hill, from meditation to workouts. 

Founded by Katherine Coffin ’26, MINDcraft is a new club that focuses on mindfulness and meditation. The group aims to provide students with mental health resources and a safe space to prioritize their mental well-being. “This semester, I sought out to form a new student organization at Kenyon with the purpose of learning and raising awareness of mindfulness practices and skills in order for students to exercise mindfulness and improve their well-being in and outside of the designated meeting space,” Coffin wrote in an email to the Collegian. “I first thought about starting a mindfulness club when I noticed the lack of mental-health resources on campus, specifically ones aimed at helping students on a day-to-day basis with stress, anxiety and depression. The goal in founding MINDcraft Club was to spark campus interest and awareness in mindfulness and meditation and begin to create a culture of open communication and gratitude.” MINDcraft meets on Wednesdays from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the Wellness and Meditation Multipurpose room in Farr Hall.

Another weekly event on the Hill is ‘Thrive Through Thursday,’ spearheaded by Writing Center Director Anna Scanlon. Every Thursday, students can receive support with study skills, writing and time management. The event is designed to be low-stress and student guided, providing students with support from different offices and resources on campus such as the Writing Center, Student Accessibility and Support Services, the Office of Academic Advising, the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and the Center for Global Engagement. The event fosters an inclusive, fun and relaxed environment.

“We hope that students who come to [Thrive Through Thursday] use it as a chance to get support materials, meet with people representing campus resources they may not otherwise take advantage of and recognize that everyone faces different challenges in academia, but learning how to ask for help — and where to find that help — is how you overcome them,” Scanlon wrote in an email to the Collegian

Looking to exercise your mind and body? Students can utilize the plentiful resources provided by the Lowry Center to focus on mindfulness and well-being. KenyonFit offers 10 yoga and tai chi classes each week, from Restorative, to Sculpt and Vinyasa Vitality. These classes are designed to improve strength and mental health in a safe environment. For community members who want to add more variety to their fitness routine, KenyonFit also provides Zumba, spin and many other options. The classes are for all levels of experience, so everyone is encouraged to sign up. “Exercise is an excellent method to relieve anxiety, improve sleep and clear your mind — some class formats, such as yoga and tai chi, focus more deeply on the mind-body connection. These classes help participants to concentrate on controlled breathing and use movement to bring the body and mind inward, away from outside distractions,” Lowry Center Fitness and Recreation Programming Coordinator Tiffany McCallen wrote in an email to the Collegian.

KenyonFit classes can be booked by students and faculty up to 30 minutes in advance on the KenyonFit app, and more information about all KenyonFit offerings can be found online. 

In addition, the Cox Health and Counseling Center provides other self-care offerings for students. Holly Levin, interim director of wellness and associate director of health promotion for the Health Center, strives to incorporate mindfulness into programs offered to students. “We have held mindfulness sessions in the library and outside, and we have gone to several classrooms and team meetings to lead such activities. My goal is to help students see that these are approachable things we can all do when feeling stressed or overwhelmed. Whether you’re in class, the library or in your room, breathing and mindfulness exercises are always available,” Levin wrote in an email to the Collegian.

Students can take advantage of campus resources and opportunities to practice mindfulness and focus on mental wellness in several areas of the College. As the academic year comes to a close, these resources are available and accessible and can serve as a means for students to practice mindfulness at Kenyon.


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