Patricia Jennings, MEd, PhD, is an internationally recognized leader in the field of mindfulness in education and associate professor of education in the Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia. A regular mindfulness practitioner for more than 40 years, she has spent most of her life exploring how mindfulness can enhance teaching and learning.
Jennings received her doctorate degree in human development from the University of California, Davis, and completed postdoctoral training in the health psychology program at the University of California, San Francisco. She led the faculty team in developing Garrison Institute’s program, Cultivating Awareness and Resilience in Education (CARE), conducting research to examine how CARE may improve teacher-student relationships, increase pro-social student behavior, create a more positive classroom atmosphere, and improve students’ academic performance.
In addition to psychological research, Patricia Jennings has nearly 25 years of research and teaching experience in the field of education. After receiving a master’s degree in education, she founded and directed an experimental school where she developed and field-tested curriculum for children from infancy through 5th grade, applying into her work a variety of contemplative approaches that come from alternative educational methodologies such as Montessori and Waldorf schools. She later served as director of intern teachers at St. Mary’s College Graduate School of Education in Moraga, California, where she taught education courses, supervised student research, developed teacher-training curriculum, and supervised student-teacher training.