Frequently Asked Questions
"I know that this program places strong emphasis on the Buddhist understanding of mind and on meditation practice. Do I have to be a Buddhist to do this program? Do you expect me to becomes one?"
"Can I do this program part time?"
"What if I have children?"
Having a family and being a graduate student is often quite a balancing act. Students with younger children can find it especially challenging to balance their children’s needs with the demands of the program, especially around arrangements for the Maitri retreats. At the same time, the program tries to be responsive to the needs of parents and many parents have successfully completed the program. Some of the ways that have been arranged are for parents to visit their children at selected times during the retreats and, in rare cases, a parent is allowed to bring a child. The parent must then provide a full-time “nanny” for the time that the child is at the retreat.
"Are there prerequisites for this program? I haven't studied pyschology before."
We do not have any specific prerequisites for the program. We have found that some of our most effective students have come from backgrounds other than psychology. Significant life experience seems to be the most valuable prior “work” one can have done. However, many internship placements will not accept students who have not had some experience in the field. For this reason, we strongly encourage those without such experience to do volunteer work either before they come or during the first two years of the program. A background or some reading in psychology can, of course, be very useful before entering the program.