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Vol. 16, #2 October 4, 2000
Copyright 2000, Maharishi University of Management


University Accreditation Extended for Additional Ten-Year Period

Dr. James Receives $335,000 Grant for Biodiversity Research in Philippines

Faculty, Former Student Present Research at NIH

New Recreational Trail Borders Campus on North and West

Reconstruction of Men's Dome Begins

University Alum, School Teacher Win Second in Triathlon

68 New Students Enroll in Computer Science Co-Op

Demolition Relocates Several Departments

College of Maharishi Consciousness-Based Health Care To Offer Weekend of Discovery Oct. 6-9

Yogic Flyers Invited to Scenic Dubrovnik

University Accreditation Extended for Additional Ten-Year Period

Following a thorough review in March by a team of educators representing the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, the primary accrediting body for the middle U.S., the University received official word in August that its accreditation has been extended for 10 years--the maximum allowable period.

In addition, the University received authorization to offer the M.A. in computer science and the M.A. in web design via distance education, in addition to the M.B.A.

"The team of experienced educators who came as part of our 10-year comprehensive visit was very impressed with what they saw here and especially with the people they met," said Craig Pearson, executive vice-president. "They particularly commended the unusually harmonious atmosphere among students, faculty, and administration and the faculty's global vision for the University."

The visiting team looked at all aspects of the University, its curriculum, pedagogies, strategic planning, finances and fundraising, faculty credentials and research, and approaches to assessment.

A particular point of focus was assessment--that is, demonstrating that students are indeed learning what the faculty are trying to teach. According to Mr. Pearson, academic institutions nationwide are being asked to assess learning in a systematic way in order to judge effectiveness.

In response to this new emphasis on assessment, the University faculty and deans have spent several years developing assessment procedures and instruments in all the departments. The visiting team said that the University had done a good job of implementing assessment across the curriculum.

Another important component of preparing for the accreditation visit was developing a strategic plan that focuses on all aspects of the institution, especially enrollment growth.

Mr. Pearson said that this strategic plan is helping the University chart its progress and that the systematic organizing efforts have helped contribute to recent successes in enrollment--as has the demolition of old buildings and construction of new buildings according to principles of Maharishi Sthapatya Veda design.

Mr. Pearson said that a main purpose of accreditation visits is to help the University systematically evaluate its progress and to make helpful suggestions. One recommendation of the visiting team was that the University add more trustees. Mr. Pearson said that this suggestion was implemented and has already given great impetus to growth

"We feel very fortunate to be affiliated with the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, and we have benefited from its guidance for many years now," Mr. Pearson said.


Dr. James Receives $335,000 Grant for Biodiversity Research in Philippines

Faculty member Sam James recently received a grant of $335,000 from the National Science Foundation to conduct a biodiversity survey of the northern and western Philippines--a project that will offer extensive fieldwork opportunities for students.

The survey was inspired by and may ultimately be useful to the Philippines in understandin the problem of earthworms that are ravaging the ancient rice terraces. Dr. James said that the country lacks the expertise and basic knowledge of biodiversity to deal with this problem.

Dr. James will work with a team of scientists from Korea, Japan, the Philippines, Australia, Canada, and the United States. Undergraduate students will be involved in all aspects of the research, including field trips to the Philippines.

According to Dr. James, the purpose of the survey is to develop a comprehensive specimen collection and database on the terrestrial segmented worms and snails of the Philippines. This knowledge will assist with conservation efforts and land use planning in the Philippines and southeast Asia.

"This project is a great opportunity for students to get involved in a comprehensive global survey," Dr. James said. "This kind of work is on the increase globally, as people realize that the diversity of living things is endangered. They want to find what is out there and recognize its value, whether esthetic, recreational, or economic."

Besides fieldwork in the mountain forests of the Philippines, there will be laboratory work processing and cataloguing collections, data entry, and web site construction and maintenance. Dr. James welcomes student participation in all aspects and can arrange academic credit.

Last December Dr. James traveled on a federally sponsored trip to the Philippines, where he conducted preliminary research on the earthworm problem. The trip, sponsored by the National Science Foundation, enabled him to conduct a general assessment of the land in order to write two grant proposals, one that resulted in the current award and one that he hopes will provide funding to establish solutions to the critical predicament of earthworm-infested rice terraces.

Dr. James said he is optimistic that farmers can benefit from the survey by becoming educated in ecologically sound practices which will enable them to reduce earthworm populations to a manageable level and live profitably off their land.


Faculty, Former Student Present Research at NIH

In June University researchers had the opportunity to highlight the health benefits of the Transcendental Meditation program at a workshop sponsored by the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland.

Robert Schneider, M.D., dean of the College of Maharishi Consciousness-Based Health Care and director of the Center for Natural Medicine and Prevention, and Vernon A. Barnes, Ph.D., University graduate and faculty member at the Medical College of Georgia, gave presentations to the National Workshop on Complementary and Alternative Medicine on the role of the Transcendental Meditation technique in preventing cardiovascular disease.

They reviewed studies on the effectiveness of the Transcendental Meditation program in treating hypertension and coronary heart disease--the number one cause of death in the U.S. Dr. Barnes reviewed several studies evaluating the underlying mechanisms responsible for decreases in blood pressure during the Transcendental Meditation technique.

His most recent work suggests that decreases in vasoconstrictive tone during the Transcendental Meditation technique may be the mechanism responsible for reduction of high blood pressure over time.

Findings well received

"It was exciting to present my work on the Transcendental Meditation technique at the NIH," Dr. Barnes said. "I was chosen to speak on the basis of my recent paper on the marked effect of the Transcendental Meditation technique on hemodynamic function." In other words, the Transcendental Meditation technique seems to directly affect the flow of the blood through the veins and arteries.

"Many top people in complementary and alternative medicine research and administration were present," Dr. Barnes said. "Many were not aware of the new research on the Transcendental Meditation technique, and our findings were well received."

Dr. Barnes also reviewed several studies concerning the impact of Transcendental Meditation technique on cardiovascular reactivity to acute stress. The most recent findings indicate a beneficial impact of the Transcendental Meditation technique on cardiovascular functioning at rest and during acute laboratory stress in adolescents who are at risk for developing hypertension.

The study shows a significant reduction in resting blood pressure and in exaggerated increases in blood pressure and heart rate when individuals are under stress.

Dr. Barnes also presented preliminary research on the impact of the Transcendental Meditation technique on 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure and 24-hour heart function parameters such as cardiac output, stroke volume, and totat peripheral resistance in African American adolescents. These data are still being analyzed and may help better understand the underlying hemodynamic mechanisms responsible for the lowering of blood pressure.

Dr. Schneider reviews clinical trials

Dr. Schneider presented a review of clinical trials with the Transcendental Meditation technique on cardiovascular disease risk factors, morbidity, and mortality and concluded that the Transcendental Meditation technique has significant public health implications for the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease.

There were about 20 speakers and an additional 100 attendees. Other speakers included world-renowned experts in the field of herbal medicine, chelation therapy, and acupuncture from institutions such as Purdue, Yale, Harvard, and Stanford.

The goal of the workshop was to promote exchange of information and ideas between alternative medicine practitioners and scientists in cardiovascular, lung, and blood research and to foster collaborative research among these researchers.

A specific objective was to identify research opportunities in selected complementary and alternative medicine approaches and make recommendations for future research directions.

University plays important role

"It is gratifying that now when the NIH is reviewing the potential contributions of natural medicine to the nation's health, they are calling on the College of Maharishi Consciousness-Based Health Care and our Ph.D. graduates at other institutions to provide the most up-to-date scientific knowledge on role of the Transcendental Meditation program for prevention," Dr. Schneider said. "This is one more sign of the rise of collective consciousness and the role of our University in creating a disease-free society."

The workshop was sponsored by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.


New Recreational Trail Borders Campus on North and West


Bicyclists, joggers, and walkers have even more opportunities for a scenic trek nearby now that two new segments have been added to the loop trail that will eventually surround Fairfield.

The Jefferson County Trails Council completed an additional 2.5 miles of the planned 17-mile Fairfield loop trail this summer, including a segment that follows the old railroad bed which borders the north and west edges of campus.

This latest addition to the trail starts at 8th Street and Gear Avenue by the golf driving range, then crosses Highway 1 just north of campus, and continues east to B Street. Another section extending from Pleasant Plain Road to Walton Road was completed.

According to Ron Blair, who has been instrumental in organizing the loop trail, the Trails Council will be meeting with University officials and students to help determine where to put connector paths from the campus to the trail to provide easy access for students and staff.

"It's just fantastic to see the students, faculty, and staff using the new trail segments each and every day since they've opened," Mr. Blair said.

The Trails Council continues the search for funding to complete the project. Funding to date has been a combination of private donations and contributions from the City of Fairfield and the Resource Enhancement and Protection Agency of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.

The Trails Council recently applied for a grant to rebuild the old Chicago Rock Island Railroad Line bridge that was torn down in the early 1980s where the trail crosses Highway 1. When they receive the grant, they will seek matching funds from private donors to build a footbridge over Highway 1 to complete this part of the trail. The final sections of the 17-mile trail are scheduled to be completed by 2003.


Reconstruction of Men's Dome Begins

By the end of next summer the Maha-rishi Patanjali Golden Dome is expected to not only have a new east entrance but also a new, enveloping rectangular structure--both of which will help bring the Dome into accordance with principles of Maharishi Sthapatya Veda design.

A new building that extends several feet beyond the current Dome walls will be constructed, and when finished the old Dome walls and windows will be removed, with the supporting pillars left in place, said David Todt, who is overseeing the reconstruction of the campus.

The new structure will have an east entrance. Immediately inside that entrance the entire east side of the building will be used as an entry space for shoes and coats, as well as restrooms. Beyond the entry space will be another set of doors to the main portion of the building, used for group practice of the Transcendental Meditation® and TM-Sidhi® programs.

Mr. Todt said that the ground in front of the new program hall will be leveled, with approximately two-thirds of the bleacher area of the old stadium being removed. The current small dome-shaped entrance will be removed, and landfill will be moved from the east side of the building to the west to create a flat landscape around the program hall.

The new structure will be completed in two phases: the east side by April, including a functional east entrance; then the construction of the west side by the end of summer.

The program hall will continue to be used during the reconstruction.


University Alum, School Teacher Win Second in Triathlon

Dawn Ashby, a University graduate and current Maharishi School math teacher, and Reni Brunner, a former student and current School biology teacher, both recently won second place in their age divisions at a regional triathlon competition held in Kirksville, Missouri.

The grueling competition involved a three-quarter-mile swim, a 13-mile bike ride, and a five-mile run. It was the second triathlon competition for Ms. Brunner and first for Ms. Ashby.

"It's funny because we just didn't expect anything," Ms. Brunner said. She explained that while they both have been biking nearly every day and swimming five times a week, they hadn't really been training strenuously. "I thought I had no chance of winning anything."

The both completed the race in nearly identical times: about two hours and two minutes. Their second place finishes have qualified them to participate in the national championship.

Both are active in the swimming club, which meets from 6:00-6:45 a.m. at the Roosevelt indoor pool, and the biking club, which meets Sundays at 9:00 a.m. Ms. Brunner invites anyone interested to become involved in these clubs. Call her for more information at 472-4279.


68 New Students Enroll in Computer Science Co-Op

A record 68 students arrived on campus from around the world in mid-September to enroll in the M.A. in computer science co-op program.

According to admissions officer Elaine Guthrie, this is the largest group to enroll in the co-op program so far. Another 20 co-op students who came for the June entry are on campus, giving a total of nearly 90 computer science co-op students.

In this most recent group, 25 are from China, 14 from India, 10 from Nepal, 7 from Pakistan, and 2 from Rumania, as well as students from Bahrain, Qatar, Fiji, Thailand, and Indonesia. Ms. Guthrie said that this is the first time the University has had a student from Bahrain.

"We're excited and are very impressed with these students," Ms. Guthrie said. "They're a very coherent, happy, professional group."

The students will spend four to eight months on campus and then will be placed in an internship, finishing their degrees via distance education.

Ms. Guthrie attributes the larger enrollment in part to the Internet-based marketing to information technology professionals headed by Ron Barnett. She also noted that they were able to handle the 2,400 applications more efficiently thanks to a database system set up by staff member Bob Sanny.


Demolition Relocates Several Departments


Students returned for the school year to find several educational departments relocated due to the demolition of Carnegie and Vishwakarma Halls this past summer.

According to Pat Robinson, associate dean of faculty, the move was an overall success. "I am very impressed with the flexibility and creativity of my colleagues. Everyone really seemed to have a sporting attitude of 'out with the old and in with the Vastu.'" In many cases the new quarters are actually larger and more comfortable.

The management department, formerly in Carnegie Hall, is now located on the first and second floor of Building 143.

The departments formerly in Vishwakarma have been moved to various locations. Literature and professional writing have been moved to Frat 107, and the education department is now located on the second floor of Building 143.

The art department main office and computer art programs are located in the Student Union, painting in the lobby of Frat 111, and the plaster and sculpture lab in the lobby of Building 141.

The physics department was also relocated from Building 143 to the former location of the personnel office in Building 402.


College of Maharishi Consciousness-Based Health Care To Offer Weekend of Discovery Oct. 6-9


The College of Maharishi Consciousness-Based Health Care will be hosting an in-residence, weekend-long introduction to Maharishi Consciousness-Based Health Care from October 6 to 9.

"Maharishi Consciousness-Based Health Care helps individuals enliven their mind/body connection and awaken their own, innate healing capacity," says Robert Schneider, M.D., the College dean, who recently received an $7.6 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to fund research in complimentary and alternative medicine.

Course participants will tour campus facilities, mingle with students, and enjoy wholesome, delicious meals. They'll also learn about groundbreaking research the College has recently published in the AHA's journal Stroke, and which has also appeared in national periodicals like Time magazine and international publications like The Express. Other highlights include a trip to The Raj, the Midwest's premier health resort, and an evening performance of Maharishi Gandharva Veda music.

"Maharishi Consciousness-Based Health Care is really the wave of the future," says Dr. Schneider. "We encourage everyone to come and explore this exciting, new field."


Yogic Flyers Invited to Scenic Dubrovnik

Yogic Flyers are invited to attend the Dubrovnik World Peace Project in Croatia, especially during this delicate time following the Yugoslavia elections.

The numbers have dropped since this summer, and more Yogic Flyers are needed. Dubrovnik is close to Yugoslavia and thus through its proximity can bring a powerful influence of coherence to its neighbor while remaining completely secure within its own Croatian borders.

The Dubrovnik World Peace Project is located on the scenic coast of the Adriatic Sea. Dubrovnik is considered a world-class tourist location and includes the historic and charming Old Dubrovnik, with its centuries-old architecture, art galleries, boutiques, cafés, and restaurants.

The Dubrovnik course has rented an entire hotel and has its own staff and cooks, who serve food prepared according to Maharishi Ayur Veda principles. The hotel is surrounded by trees and parkland. Swimming and snorkeling are available in the clear, unpolluted Adriatic waters just a few minutes walk from the hotel. There are also opportunities to sail and take boat cruises to the nearby islands.

The Dubrovnik course has a range of programs to choose from. To apply, contact your National Course Office. Americans can call the National Course Office in Antrim, New Hampshire, (603) 588-6545. The programs offered are:

•International World Peace Assembly--full rounding, single and double accommodations, partial sponsorship available for double rooms.

•Partial Scholarship Program--normal morning and evening program; participants assist with light activities several hours a day for partial sponsorship.

•Holiday Program--normal morning and evening program, the rest of the time is free to enjoy as you like.

•Purusha Prep Program--full rounding, for single male Governors and Sidhas; sponsorship is available.

•Meditator Rounding Program.

For more details on the Dubrovnik Peace Project, see their web site at

A second course, being held in Belgrade, is primarily for Yugoslavs but presents an opportunity to support this project in a cost-effective fashion. The course fee for the Yugoslav Yogic Flyers has been reduced to only $25 per week.

For more information or to make a contribution, contact Jane Geller at (641) 470-1416. Or leave a message at (310) 285-3400.


®Transcendental Meditation, TM-Sidhi, Maharishi Sthapatya Veda, Maharishi Consciousness-Based Health Care, Maharishi Ayur Veda, Maharishi Gandharva Veda, Maharishi Jyotish, Science of Creative Intelligence, Maharishi School of the Age of Enlightenment, and Maharishi University of Management are registered or common law trademarks licensed to Maharishi Vedic Education Development Corporation and used under sublicense.

The Review is written and produced approximately twice a month during the academic year by the students in the Professional Writing program at Maharishi University of Management. Send comments to Jim Karpen at