In spring 2022, Mind & Life launched a pilot mentoring program to support and grow the pool of Global Majority investigators in contemplative research, particularly those who attend the Mind & Life Summer Research Institute (SRI) and those who may seek funding from our grants. This program is based on Inclusive Contemplative Leadership and Mentorship, defined as mentorship which draws from the lineages and experiences of both the mentor and mentee. This type of mentorship broadens the scope and understanding of contemplative practice to contribute to ever-expanding diversity, equity and inclusiveness. An interdisciplinary working group developed the program in 2021 led by Dr. Kamilah Majied, and a successful pilot program was run in 2022.  

In this thought-provoking blog, Dr. Kamilah Majied, Program Development Lead Consultant and inclusivity and equity consultant, reflects on her experiences with the program and shares her insights.

This program provides a unique opportunity to receive mentorship from experienced Global Majority investigators in contemplative research, and support to seek funding from Mind & Life grants. 

During the year-long program, you will delve deeper into your own contemplative practice and strengthen your leadership skills, leading to a greater sense of personal agency, belonging, and community. The program focuses on developing academic and leadership strategies for aspiring and current global majority contemplative scholars, incorporating inclusivity and liberation pedagogy into its framework. 

The program is a one-year commitment starting in May 2023 and includes support for participating in Mind & Life’s 2024 Summer Research Institute and guidance in applying for the Francisco JK. Varela Research Grant. For more information, email

Participants in the 2023 program


  • Doris F. Chang, New York University
  • Cheryl Woods-Giscombe, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
  • Mays Imad, Connecticut University
  • Steven Oliver, Salem University
  • Ram Mahalingham, University of Michigan
  • Jeffrey Proulx, Brown University


  • Maha Al-Suwaidi, University of California, Los Angeles
  • Mansi Brat, Kean University
  • Rui Machado, Federal University of Pampa
  • Christa Mahlobo, University of Pennsylvania
  • Felipe Mercado, California State University
  • Edgardo Ramirez, University of California, Los Angeles

Leadership and Mentorship Program Working Group

Inger Burnett-Zeigler, PhD

Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University

Doris F. Chang, PhD

New York University

Convening Faculty, Grantee, Reviewer

Grant Jones

The Black Lotus Collective; Harvard University

Grantee, Reviewer, Steering Council Member

Yoona Kang, PhD

University of Pennsylvania

Convening Faculty, Grantee, Reviewer

Kamilah Majied, PhD, PhD

California State University, Monterey Bay

Convening Faculty

Dominique A. Malebranche, Ph.D.

Pepperdine University

Planning Committee Member, Reviewer

Vaishali Mamgain, PhD

University of Southern Maine

Kedrick Perry, PhD

Loyola University

Juan Santoyo

Universidad de Antioquia; Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Grantee, Planning Committee Member, Reviewer