Kadie Roberts says, "TM has given me a calm and stable base to act from, a steady force within me."
Jaqueline Leete says that TM helps her keep her focus and energy in class and sports.
Dia Huggins says that TM keeps her balanced and gives her a platform to do her best.
Alex Hoffman says TM gives him more clarity and alertness during the day, no matter how much he sleeps.
Nathaniel Zhu says, "TM helped me mentally and physically to better tackle academics."
by Christine Albers at Enlightenment, TM Magazine, issue 25
25 September 2015
The Academic Excellence Award was granted to five seniors who maintained a perfect grade point average of 4.0 throughout four years of high school at Maharishi School, Fairfield, Iowa. Here five of the seven awardees speak about the School’s unique curriculum, including daily practice of the Transcendental Meditation (TM) program, which helped them overcome teenage stress and become successful and happy students.
Kadie Roberts: Born and raised in Fairfield, I started Maharishi School in pre-school.
I started my children’s meditation when I was four. I’ve been meditating 13 years, and I’m still surprised at how happy I feel afterwards. TM has given me a calm and stable base to act from, a steady force within me. It gives me comfort and confidence, and I know whatever happens, that self-sufficiency from within will be there. I don’t have to worry.
Senior year has been pretty crazy, really busy, and a roller coaster of emotions, feeling both excited and sad to leave MSAE. Putting everything out there to colleges and waiting for acceptance has been a little intimidating. TM definitely helped me through that intense but fun process.
I tell people I have the best friends in the whole world, and I totally mean it. Many of us grew up here, and we’ve been through everything together. I’m still amazed how supportive everyone is if there’s a challenge. New girls, who didn’t grow up here, easily integrate into the group.
Jaqueline Leete: I was born on the MUM campus, and my parents work for the university. I’ve been going to MSAE since pre-school. I like the intimacy of the school and the community. I feel valued as an individual, not like a face in the crowd. Maharishi School is my family, so I’m a little sad about leaving, but also happy to explore new possibilities.
I really like my TM practice because it helps me in class and sports. To keep my focus and energy up, I always meditate before tennis matches. When we meditate before math class, my attention to detail is more accurate. TM will give me a competitive edge at college if I stay rested and meditate regularly.
Dia Huggins: My parents were MUM graduates and moved back to Fairfield so my three older brothers and I could attend MSAE. We all started in pre-school.
TM is one of the cornerstones of my education. It keeps me balanced, composed, and prepared for the day. Even if I’m overwhelmed at school, socially, or at home, TM is the one thing I come back to, which is myself. It gives me a platform to go out and be the best I can be.
My favorite part of MSAE has been the people I spend time with every day, from my teachers to my peers, and even the Lower School kids. We are a tight community. Classes are small, with 10 to 15 students, so bonds grow strong. We stay connected in and outside of school. Even people who don’t know each other well talk in the hallways and congratulate each other on accomplishments, like Speech, or Destination Imagination, or sports.
My older brothers told me, “You might not realize how special your connections are until you leave.” But I realize this now.
MSAE has prepared me for college, not just academically, but in terms of how to live my life—to not be overwhelmed and stay happy and healthy, which is as important as academics.
Alex Hoffman: My parents moved here from Seattle when I was three years old so my brother and I could go to MSAE.
TM helps me cope with sleepless nights, so I don’t become a zombie. Even if I don’t sleep well, the rest in meditation helps me stay alert during the day and not become irritable. I’ve experienced great clarity from meditating regularly. This clarity helped me decide what I want to do in life and to enjoy each day.
I’m postponing college for a year to attend the Air Guard basic training. They have a cool new cyber operations base in Des Moines. Learning cyber security will help me at the University of Iowa, when I study computer science.
I matured a lot here and became good friends with my teachers, who helped us develop critical thinking skills for greater academic comprehension. These important learning skills will help me in college and in life.
Nathaniel Zhu: I arrived at Maharishi School when I was three years old. My parents graduated from MUM and experienced Fairfield’s wonderful, safe, and protected community. They wanted that for my brother and me.
TM helped me mentally and physically to better tackle academics, and at Destination Imagination (DI), to think quickly at the Improvisation challenges, when everything was on the fly. I know TM will help me in college because it’s a built-in rest period, adding stability to a chaotic day.
My favorite experience was winning 5th place in the Senior Level Improvisation Challenge at the DI Global Competition. I still can’t believe it. The judges were impressed with our coherence on stage. After 13 years of meditating together and 7 years working together on various DI teams, we learned how to be there for each other. Teamwork was the essential ingredient to our success.
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