Photo by Sofia Drobinskaya
Alumnx Fern Deininger stands as a testament to the transformative power of contemplative education. During her time at Naropa, she was deeply engaged in the student community, serving as Co-Chair of the Student Union of Naropa and Manager of Naropa’s Bike Shack.
After graduating in 2019 with a bachelor’s degree in Art Therapy, she has excelled in various mission-driven endeavors. Currently serving as the Clinical Program Manager at TARA Mind, Fern applies her passion for healthcare and organizational development to create streamlined processes that enhance client care. Her background in art therapy speaks to her creative spirit, while her role at TARA Mind reflects her commitment to making meaningful contributions in the field of healthcare.
Michael Bauer’s transformative tenure as the Director of Sustainability at Naropa University from January 2018 to July 2023 epitomizes his unwavering commitment to creating a more sustainable and just world. His leadership went beyond conventional roles, evolving to encompass the Directorship of the Joanna Macy Center for Resilience and Regeneration. Collaborating alongside students, faculty, and staff, Michael’s resolute dedication was a driving force in fulfilling Naropa’s mission of achieving climate neutrality and ecological justice.
His extensive background in sustainability program design, impact evaluation, stakeholder engagement, and project management fortified his resolve to create comprehensive and equitable systems. Michael’s vision was rooted in the belief that true systems design could only thrive when underpinned by parity and justice.Michael Bauer’s legacy at Naropa University serves as a beacon of sustainability, social responsibility, and spiritual growth. His pioneering spirit, transformative leadership, and dedication continue to shape Naropa’s path toward a more sustainable and compassionate world.