Our Founder & Faculty | Spirituality Mind Body Summer Institute | Counseling & Clinical Psychology

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Spirituality Mind Body, Masters Degree Program

Program Founder

The SMBI MA Program offers a unique pedagogical model as a "crossroads" for spiritual leaders and thinkers from around the globe. SMB prioritizes experiential learning interfaced with science, insights from world traditions and diverse spiritual practices. This pedagogical model was designed by Dr. Lisa Miller based upon twenty years of teaching on spirituality in psychology at Teachers College, Columbia University. Originally offered in the late 1990s as a single class, SMB has grown to house the first Ivy League graduate degree program focused on spirituality and psychology!

Lisa  Miller, Ph.D.

Lisa Miller, Ph.D.

Founder of the Spirituality Mind Body Institute (SMBI), and Professor of Psychology & Education

Lisa Miller, Ph.D. is the Founder of the Spirituality Mind Body Institute, and a Professor of Psychology and Education at Teachers College, Columbia University.

Dr. Miller solo edited the Oxford University Handbook of Psychology and Spirituality (2012) and has published over seventy articles and chapters on spirituality in mental health and wellness.  She has been Principal Investigator on several million dollars of grants from corporate and family foundations as well as NIMH.

Co-Founder and Co-Editor-in-Chief of the new journal, Spirituality in Clinical Practice (APA Press), Dr. Miller also serves as Associate Editor of Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, the journal of APA Society of Spirituality and Psychology, for which she has been President and now is APA Council Representative.

Dr. Miller has been elected to Fellow of the American Psychological Association and awarded the Virginia Sexton Mentoring Award.  She is a graduate of Yale University, University of Pennsylvania, where she studied under Martin Seligman, Ph.D., and Columbia University.

Academic Director

Aurélie  Athan, Ph.D.

Aurélie Athan, Ph.D.

Academic Director, SMB MA Degree Program and Director of Clinical Training, SMBI Spiritual Wellness Center

Aurélie Athan is a Full-Time Lecturer in the Department of Clinical Psychology, Academic Director for the SMB MA Degree Program and the Director of Clinical Training, SMBI Spiritual Wellness Center, at Teachers College, Columbia University. 

Her scholarly interests center on spiritual development across the lifespan, with a current emphasis on the transition to motherhood. Her clinical orientation is informed by depth perspectives such as Jungian psychology with a focus on the creative expression of the human psyche in art and therapy. She has been honored to work with the Archives for Research on Archetypal Symbolism on a 10-year effort culminating in  The Book of Symbols: Reflections on Archetypal Symbolism (Taschen). As an administrator in higher education, she applies a strength-based and transformational learning framework to foster the flourishing of students through innovative curriculum design and academic guidance.

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