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Center for Contemplative Studies


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Center for Contemplative Studies

Contact Info: 
Donald McCown 
Associate Professor

Christine Moriconi 
Associate Professor

700 S. Church St. 
West Chester, PA 19383 
(across from Anderson Hall)

Phone: 610-436-2200


Donald McCown

Donald McCown, PhD, MAMS, MSS, LSW is an Associate Professor of health, director of the minor in contemplative studies, and co-director of the center for contemplative studies at West Chester University of Pennsylvania. He holds a Master of Applied Meditation Studies degree from the Won Institute of Graduate Studies, a Master of Social Service from Bryn Mawr College, and a PhD in Social Science from Tilburg University. He trained as an MBSR teacher through the Center for Mindfulness at University of Massachusetts and at Thomas Jefferson University. His primary research interests include the pedagogy of mindfulness in clinical applications and higher education, applications of complementary and integrative medicine in the community, and the contemplative dimensions of the health humanities. He is author of The Ethical Space of Mindfulness in Clinical Practice, primary author of Teaching Mindfulness: A Practical Guide for Clinicians and Educators, New World Mindfulness: From the Founding Fathers, Emerson, and Thoreau to your Personal Practice, and primary editor of Resources for Teaching Mindfulness: An International Handbook.

Christine Moriconi

Christine Moriconi, Psy.D, LMFT, RN is an Associate Professor of Nursing at West Chester University and ACES specialist. As a licensed clinical psychologist, she specializes in the systemic impact of parenting children and adults with intellectual developmental disorders and other chronic illnesses. She is a licensed marriage and family therapist and clinical fellow with the American Association of Marriage and Family therapists. As a faculty member, Christine serves on department committees, chairs a college committee for underrepresented minority students. At the university level she is co-director of the Center for Contemplative studies at WCU. Her interest in service learning is ongoing and a springboard for her interest in global health. Christine is also pursuing a NP in psychiatric nursing at the University of Pennsylvania. She received training in Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction at the University of Massachusetts, Worcester, Massachusetts and has been teaching Mindfulness since 2000.

Michelle Laurenzi

Michelle Laurenzi is a graduate student in the WCU Master of Public Health program and a graduate assistant at the Center for Contemplative Studies. She hopes to help bring mindfulness and contemplative practices to our student body as well as show everyone how easy it is to incorporate into their lives. It is especially easy with our Center here on campus for everyone to use free of charge! Mindfulness has greatly helped Michelle as a student, and she believes it can be beneficial to everyone else as well.

Patricia Spackman

Patricia Spackman is the Center's Administrative Assistant. She holds bachelor degrees in Physics, Math, and Mechanical Engineering. She coordinates CCS operations and hopes to facilitate student and staff participation in the classes and events offered by the Center. Patricia was born in Brooklyn NY, raised in Bergen County NJ, and currently resides on the family farm in Chester Spring. She enjoys singing and playing squash. One way that Patricia stay mindful is by taking long walks.

Reginald Smith

Reginald Smith is a graduate student at WCU Master's program for Higher Education Policy and Student Affairs. He graduated WCU with a Religious Studies degree and minors in Contemplative Studies, Information Technology, and Philosophy. He plans to graduate from the program in 2019. Reginald is originally from Washington, D.C., and enjoys many hobbies that include playing video games, reading books on religion and spirituality, hanging out and chatting about life, and when he is alone, just being.

Sita Amin

Sita Amin is an intern at the Center of Contemplative Studies. She graduated from Pennsylvania State University with a Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics. She is now in the Master of Public Health program with an anticipated graduation date of spring 2018. Sita is originally from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Her Hobbies consist of yoga, running, cooking, and spending time with her wonderful family.

King Frayneld

King Frayneld is a current senior at WCU, majoring in Public Health. King is one of the interns at the Center for Contemplative Studies, with an anticipated graduation date of spring 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn New York, King enjoys hanging with family and friends. He also enjoys listening to his cultural music of Haitian and Jamaican background.

Daniella Pierre

Daniella Pierre is a second year graduate student in the WCU Master of Public Health: Health Care Management Track, with an expected graduate date of August 2018. Daniella is a graduate assistant who will be working with the Center this semester. She is originally from Philadelphia, and enjoys traveling, trying new foods, and reading.

Cheri Turnquest

Cheri Turnquest is a yoga instructor here at the Center of Contemplative Studies. She is currently in her third year of the Yoga Teacher Training program at WCU. Cheri is originally from Yeadon, Pennsylvania, and she enjoys gardening and photography during her free time.

Tiffany Kennedy

Tiffany Kennedy is a current WCU junior who works with the Center for Contemplative studies as a yoga teacher. She is majoring in Nutrition and Dietetics, with and anticipated graduation date of May 2019. One hobby that Tiffany enjoys is hiking. Her hometown is Ottsville, Pennsylvania.

Sam Odak

Sam Odak is a Chemistry and Biology major, who also works with the Center of Contemplative Studies running yoga classes. He is a current senior with and expected graduation date of May 2018. Sam is from Lancaster, Pennsylvania. A hobby that he enjoys is rugby.

Chris Markle

Chris Markle, is a current WCU senior who majoring in Psychology. Chris is a yoga instructor for the Center for Contemplative studies. With and anticipated graduation date of December 2019. He enjoys taking hikes to clear his mind. Chris is from Hatfield, Pennsylvania.

Maddie Hunt

Maddie Hunt is a Public Health major and works with the Center for Contemplative Studies teaching yoga classes. Maddie is currently in her sophomore year of her undergraduate program with and anticipated graduation date of December 2019. She grew up in Wildwood Crest, New Jersey. A hobby that she enjoys is surfing.

Phoebe Landolt

Phoebe Landolt Is a current senior at West Chester University majoring in Professional Studies. She runs our morning mediation classes on Monday through Thursday at 9am. Phoebe was born in Unionville Pennsylvania, and enjoys rock climbing.

Gina Farrell

Gina Farrell is a Communications major who recently graduated from WCU in the fall of 2017. She is a yoga instructor at the Center for Contemplative Studies on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Gina was born and raised in West Chester, Pennsylvania, and a hobby she enjoys is dancing.

Victoria Maurone

Yoga Teacher Trainee leading yoga classes at the CCS

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