Vaishali Mamgain is an Associate Professor of Economics and the Director of the Bertha Crosley Ball Center for Compassion at the University of Southern Maine. She received her PhD in Economics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; her past research focused on the contributions of (im)migrants and refugees in the Maine economy; her current research is in contemplative pedagogy. A leader in the field of contemplative education, she is passionate about deconstructing epistemology and “decolonizing” contemplative practices to help educators create a more inclusive, creative, and joyful learning environment.
She also facilitates compassion training and anti-oppression workshops for corporate and nonprofit organizations in the US and abroad, specializing in somatic and immersive nature training to undo (internalized) oppression, and help vision different, more equitable, loving societies. She serves on the Board of Directors of CMind: The Center for Contemplative Mind in Society, and is a frequent contributor to programming. She is also faculty and Board member of the Courage of Care Coalition where, with others, she designs and facilitates trauma informed courses to resource participants especially global majority (aka BIPOC) and climate justice activists.
A working contemplative, she has meditated, wandered and ‘retreat’ed for many years. In 2017, she completed a three year meditation retreat at Samten Ling Retreat Center in Crestone, Colorado and now lives on a beautiful island in Maine where she enjoys swimming in the sea, admiring seaweed, running, hiking, singing, and cooking.