UAMS Expands Koru Mindfulness Program to Public

By Linda Haymes

The four-week class meets weekly at 7 p.m. on Tuesdays from Aug. 3-Aug. 24.

Koru Mindfulness is an introduction to mindfulness meditation and stress-management skills. These skills help participants fully experience life moment-to-moment with kindness and without judgment. It helps participants learn to increase self-compassion while finding balance in life.

The UAMS Mindfulness Program’s certified instructors have taught Koru Mindfulness to students, faculty and trainees at UAMS since 2017. Now, the course is available to the public for the first time.

“Koru was developed as an introduction to mindfulness for busy people who feel they ‘don’t have time to meditate,’” said Puru Thapa, M.D., director of the UAMS Mindfulness Program, professor of psychiatry and the director of Student, Resident and Faculty Wellness at UAMS. “We’ve used the Koru format to teach medical school students, physicians, faculty and others mindfulness skills to help them manage stress. Now, we’re so happy to be able to expand this program to the general public.”

The course is $120, which includes a book and the Koru Mindfulness app of guided meditations and learning materials that participants will continue to be able to access after the course is complete. This course will be conducted in a virtual format over the Zoom platform.

To register, visit or go directly to the course Eventbrite page. If cost is a major barrier to participation, a scholarship policy is available to avoid turning away anyone with a genuine interest. For questions or to apply for a scholarship, contact the program at

Koru Mindfulness is a popular and widely used program on many college campuses in the United States. It was developed by Holly Rogers, M.D., a psychiatrist from the Duke University Student Counseling Center, and her colleagues. It is now an independent organization with hundreds of teachers worldwide.

Elements taught in the course include:

  • Breath Meditation
  • Belly Breathing
  • Dynamic Breathing
  • Body Scan
  • Walking Meditation
  • Gatha Meditation
  • Guided Imagery
  • Labeling of Thoughts
  • Eating Meditation
  • Labeling of Feelings

The first course will be taught by Amber Teigen, MMS, PA-C, a certified Koru Mindfulness teacher and assistant professor and associate program director of the Physician Assistant program in the UAMS College of Health Professions. Additional courses and dates with our other certified instructors will be announced on the website.