AcademicsUndergraduate AcademicsBA Capstone Projects

BA Capstone Projects

Undergraduates at Naropa University develop a comprehensive understanding of both foundational and advanced concepts and methods in their area of study. Students build awareness of contemporary issues, and demonstrate the ability to apply, synthesize, or create knowledge through a Capstone project or paper which culminates in a presentation of their discoveries at the Bachelor of Arts Capstone Festival.

Students deliver their thesis research, senior projects, culminating manuscripts, performances, and gallery presentations from all senior level capstone courses. The presentation of capstone work takes place each semester in a community-wide festival hosted throughout the school day and into the evening. Students enlist the skills and qualities of their Naropa education to deliver a 10-40 minute presentation, reading, performance, workshop, or business pitch to an audience of Naropa community members ranging from students and teachers, to alumni and community leaders. The Festival is a part of students final grade in the Capstone course.

In Spring 2018, Naropa College Curriculum and Assessment Committee approved the Capstone Festival as an undergraduate initiative for all BA Capstone courses as the completion of the undergraduate curricular arch and the shared Undergraduate Learning Objectives. The Capstone Festival promotes real world skills development and integrity across the curriculum. A primary objective of the Capstone Festival is to raise the expectations in how students’ engage and present in front of an authentic audience in preparation for career development.

Many of the Naropa College Core Seminar classes attend the Festival as audience members, an expectation of their final class of the term and to give students a sample of what the culmination of a Naropa degree requires, so as to create a through-line from orientation to graduation. Capstones are considered a high impact practice (joining ePortfolios, Living and Learning Communities, common intellectual experiences, and community-based research) meant to inspire and reconnect with the undergraduate student experience.

BA Capstone Festival Spring 2023

This year, the BA Capstone Festival will take place May 2, May 9, and May 10, 2023.

You can see presentations in person in the Performing Arts Center or via zoom:

May 2, 2023 // 3:00–7:30 PM

  • 3:10–3:30 PM Miranda Evans //  Trauma Informed, Play Based Curriculum for Educators in TFA
  • 3:30–3:50 PM Maciej Stabile // Supporting Queer Families: An Art-Based Approach
  • 3:50–4:10 PM Lany Grant // Overview of Social and Emotional Learning In The Elementary Classroom and Its Impact On Childhood Trauma.
  • 4:10–4:30 PM Mariah Boyle // Excoriation Disorder: An Autoethnography Toward UnderstandingbCausation and Healing
  • 4:30–4:50 PM Meg Kisner // Growth of a Poet: How Karyna McGlynn Influenced My Writing
  • 5:05–5:25 PM Miles Marksson // How to Get the Same Ride to College I Got from Serving in the Marines: By Serving in the 21st Century Civilian Conservation Corps
  • 5:25–5:45 PM Sophie McPhee // Trauma in Media, Power of Influence, and the Somatic Medicine
  • 5:45–6:05 PM Lauren DeQuatro // Young Love: A High School Curriculum for Understanding Intimate Relationships.
  • 6:05–6:25 PM Catherine Landau // A Dying World: Reproductive Decision Making Amid a Global Climate Crisis
  • 6:25–6:45 PM Lexi Watkins // Bodyfulness: A Journey of the Voice
  • 6:45–7:05 PM Crystal Street // Protecting Wisdom Traditions through Decentralization
  • 7:05–7:25 PM Katherine Killeen // pending

May 9, 2023 // 3:00–7:30 PM

  • 3:10–3:30 PM Manasa Ashok // Conscious Conception: The Yoga of Mindful Pregnancy, Birth, and Parenting
  • 3:30–3:50 PM Lexi Getman // Permanent Agriculture Preventing Permanent Hunger: Using Permaculture to Address Food Insecurity at Naropa University
  • 3:50–4:10 PM Mikayala Wilder // Returning To the Body’s Wisdom: Embodiment as A Path to Wholeness
  • 4:10–4:30  PM Ryan Ellis // Embodied Synesthesia: Multimodal Approaches to Healing Trauma, Strengthening Community, and Making Sense of The World
  • 4:30–4:50  PM Jenna Priest // Initiation of an ecological identity through nature based rites of passage
  • 5:05–5:25  PM Erin Crowe // Self-Re-Story-Ation: A Guided Creative Journal Exploring Perceptions of Identity & Reality
  • 5:25–5:45 PM Cam (CMeThinks) // It takes a Village: Exploring causes of isolation and coming back into Beloved Community through Educational Foundations
  • 5:45–6:05 PM Caitlin Hochwald // Moss: As Ecopsychology
  • 6:05–6:25 PM Bliss Flies // With Courage As The Key: A Spiritual Study of Dying, Death, Loss & Grief
  • 6:25–6:45 PM Lucinnia Tonya- Mystique Majik // Overview of Social and Emotional Learning In The Elementary Classroom and Its Impact On Childhood Trauma.
  • 6:45–7:05 PM Zoey Minnigerode // Art Therapy for Adolescents: Weaving the Threads of Identity
  • 7:05–7:25 PM Aurora Adams // pending

May 10, 2023 // 3:00–7:00 PM

  • 3:10–3:30 PM Emily Mazick // Reimagining Education 
  • 3:30–3:50 PM Avery McClellan // Bringing ‘Care’ Back into Healthcare: Redefining and Reawakening Compassion in Western Healthcare Systems
  • 3:50–4:10 PM Trae Personius // How Can a Brain-Based Approach to Learning Help Generate Curiosity
  • 4:10–4:30 PM Caroline Morrison // Journeying with Purpose: Exploring the Foundations of Conscious Travel
  • 4:30–4:50 PM Naomi Graff // Spinning Through the Self: A Circus Centered Approach to IFS Therapy
  • 5:05–5:25 PM Heather Redfern // Selective Mutism: More than anxiety?
  • 5:25–5:45 PM Tucker Read // Yoga in Context
  • 5:45–6:05 PM Rachael Gula // Lyricism: Catalyst for Liberation
  • 6:20–7:00 PM Rachael Gula  and Band (Special Performance)

Previous Capstone Projects Include:

  • “Illuminating Individuation” by Naomi Brodner

  • “Mediums of Language” by Andrew Hawes

  • “Death as Teacher:  Hiding in Plain Sight” by Seth Viddal

  • “Awakened Beauty: Happily Ever After is Within” by Mallory Bales

  • “A Cyber Realm: Conjuring Media Literacy and Conquering Technology Fatigue” by Monica DiCesare

  • “Bimanual Rhythmic Practices: A new form of Emotional Regulation and Cognitive Development for All Ages” by  Austin Lokey

  • “My Exploding Heart:  Investigating Ancestry for Global Holism” by Chelle Storti

  • “Mysticism: Queering Religion and Religious Queers” by Sasha Gaynor

  • “Wear the Veil, Know the Shadow” by Joshy Vang

  • “Light on At-Risk and Homeless Youth” by Emil Marz

  • “The Hallway: A Scene from Suicide Manifesto the Musical” by Becky Hunter

  • “The Philosopher (and the) King – a new musical in workshop” by Larkin Baron

  • “Reworking the Garment Industry: Slow Fashion and Social Enterprise” by Olivia Nielsen

  • “On Nights in the Starving Body: Deconstructing Eating Disorders through an Intersectional Lens” by Kailey Murphy

  • “Fractivation” by Kelly Emmanuella Bartell

  • “Trauma Exposure Response, Mindfulness, and the Path to Resilience: Naropa University Case Study” by Ayries Blanck

  • “Architects of Peace: Reconstructing Narratives from Either/Or to Both/And” by Jenna Corbin

  • “Cross-Cultural Reconciliation in the Classroom: Place, Identity and Youth Empowerment through an Indigenous Lens” by Cody Spyke (nominated for the Peace and Justice Studies Association Best Undergraduate Paper of the Year Award, 2011)

  • “The American Caste System: Mass Incarceration of African Americans” by Ebony Williams

  • “Understanding the Moral Imagination Through Waldorf Approaches To Education” by Julie Wood

  • “What Holds Up: A Feminist Coming of Age Story” by Julia Davis

Search Naropa University



This is where experiential learning meets academic rigor. Where you challenge your intellect and uncover your potential. Where you discover the work you’re moved to do—then use it to transform our world.

“*” indicates required fields


This is where experiential learning meets academic rigor. Where you challenge your intellect and uncover your potential. Where you discover the work you’re moved to do—then use it to transform our world.

“*” indicates required fields