Contemplative Semester Brings Transformative Educational Experience to Potash Hill

December 13, 2023

We are excited to welcome college students to campus again in September 2024 when the new Contemplative Semester program launches on Potash Hill. This 4-month residential immersion program offers young people a deep dive into mindfulness meditation and community. It will be based in the Serkin Center.

The Contemplative Semester is a transformative educational experience for young adults ages 18 – 25 that targets the primary drivers of their crisis of wellbeing. With a time-tested and research-backed curriculum of mindfulness meditation, relational practices, and purpose discovery, the program imparts a life-long practice of inner freedom, compassion, and equanimity and prepares participants to step into powerful lives of love and leadership. Graduates are equipped as future leaders with the emotional, social, and professional resources and skills to flourish and build a better world for all.

Rooted in Buddhist philosophy and practice, the Contemplative Semester’s 14-week curriculum explores the 8 Fold Noble Path as a framing and includes four weeks of silent retreat along with daily silent meditation practice. Other core topics include nature awareness, ethical leadership, creative expression, and collaborative community building.

“I’m excited to participate in the Contemplative Semester because I think it will give me a unique chance to focus on my practice in a way I couldn’t otherwise,” says Naomi, a 20-year old program participant. “I’m really looking forward to building relationships with other students with similar outlooks and spending time in the mountains as well. I hope this will be an opportunity for me to reflect on and reconnect with my goals after I graduate from college.”

The Contemplative Semester is being launched by the co-founder of Inward Bound Mindfulness Education (iBme), Jessica Morey, along with other long-time iBme staff members. iBme was founded in 2010, building upon a 30-year lineage of teen mindfulness retreats that began in Barre, Massachusetts in 1989. It is from this foundation that co-founder Jessica Morey, who attended her first retreat at age 14, was inspired to launch a nonprofit dedicated to teaching mindfulness to young people. iBme is now an international organization that holds retreats in the US, Canada, the United Kingdom, and online. Its core mission is to guide teens and young adults in developing the self-awareness, compassion, healthy communication, and ethical decision-making needed to improve their lives and communities. For more information, visit

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Photos courtesy of the Contemplative Semester