The backbone of any successful team is its hard-working people. The University of Toronto’s (U of T) Information Technology Services (ITS) division is no exception. We are privileged to employ outstanding individuals who share and extend their expertise to advance digital and IT solutions at the University – driving better outcomes around teaching, learning and scholarship across our three campuses. The team is made up of many unique people with diverse talents that extend beyond work-related education and skills.
In this new segment, entitled IT@UofT People, we will get to know our IT@UofT team across the tri-campus and find out more about their hidden or not-so-hidden talents and/or pursuits outside of work.
How long have you worked at University of Toronto (U of T)?
I’ve worked at U of T, EASI, for just under three years. I’m a senior information systems analyst working on business process redesign, change management and systems implementation and integration projects. My educational background is in mathematics, statistics, actuarial science, and business (with a bachelor of math (BMath) from the University of Waterloo and an Master of Business Administration (MBA) from U of T’s Rotman School of Management). Prior to U of T, I worked in financial engineering and data science at Algorithmics/IBM and as an analyst for CIBC and the Bank of Nova Scotia.
What is your secret or not-so-secret talent(s) and hobbies outside of work?
It’s not a secret amongst my colleagues or anyone who knows me that mindfulness is my passion. I take every opportunity I can to talk about it and to share my experience, knowledge and practice.
Starting in fall 2019, I will teach Mindful Moments at U of T’s Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE), a 45-minute session open to all staff, students and faculty. I am also on the faculty of the Centre for Mindfulness Studies as a mindfulness-based program facilitator in mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) and mindful self-compassion (MSC), which I sometimes bring in to the University and offer to staff and students.
I have facilitated mindfulness programs for leaders and staff of several organizations. Many people may not know that I am a registered psychotherapist in private practice. I do this work on the days I am not at U of T.
I am also currently a Masters of Pastoral Studies (Spiritual Care) – Buddhist Studies student (part-time) at Emmanuel College, U of T. I like to write about spiritual care and mindfulness and my articles have been published in the Canadian Journal of Buddhist Studies, Elephant Journal, on my blog (Mindful Wellness with Rose Mina Munjee) and I’m working on contributing a chapter for an upcoming book about multi-faith perspectives in spiritual care in Canada.
You can find some of my guided meditations at:
How and why did you get started on this path and where did it first begin?
This has really become a way of life for me. I took an MBSR course 15 years ago to help find ease from high stress in my corporate job and anxiety from stressful life circumstances and to learn about self-care. I was dealing with a lower back injury and physical pain as well. This was a transformative experience for me and set me on a path to learn more about mindfulness, pursue practice in group settings, attend meditation retreats and eventually train as a yoga and mindfulness teacher. I am a life-long learner and continue to study and practice with different teachers and in various settings.
Do you have any professional training in this field?
I am certified by the U of T Applied Mindfulness Meditation Program, the Centre for Mindfulness Studies, University of California San Diego and the Centre for Mindful Self Compassion in AMM-Mind (Applied Mindfulness Meditation), MBSR, MBCT and MSC. I have also completed more than 600 hours of therapeutic and restorative Hatha yoga teacher training and advanced craniosacral therapy training in Toronto.
Who/what are your inspirations for this pursuit?
I am inspired by the work of my teachers and authors, including Thich Nhat Hanh, Jack Kornfield and H.H. Dalai Lama. Some of my favorites include: Dream Work by Mary Oliver, A Path with Heart: A Guide Through the Perils and Promises of Spiritual Life by Jack Kornfield.