Mindfulness Collaborative @ UCLA

Mindfulness is being practiced and taught in many corners of the UCLA campus, from Student Affairs to the Semel Institute to the Medical and Nursing Schools to the Anderson School of Business and beyond.  The Mindfulness Collaborative @ UCLA is a group of students, faculty and staff from departments across campus who are facilitators of mindfulness in their varied settings.  Please read on for information about who we are and how we are sharing mindfulness to support the health and well-being of our students, colleagues, and peers.

Marvin G. Belzer

Marvin G. Belzer, Ph.D, Associate Director, Mindful Awareness Research Center (MARC)

Email: mbelzer@mednet.ucla.edu

Marvin G. Belzer, PhD, has taught mindfulness meditation for twenty years. He is an Adjunct Associate Professor in the UCLA Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences. For many years he taught a semester-long meditation course in the Department of Philosophy at Bowling Green St. University, where he was an Associate Professor of Philosophy. He teaches an undergraduate course at UCLA (Psychiatry 175: Mindfulness Practice and Theory) and teaches mindfulness in many different venues in Los Angeles.

Dr. Belzer’s Mindfulness Facilitation:

Dr. Belzer teaches widely across campus and beyond.  Check the MARC website for more information: http://marc.ucla.edu/

Barbara Demman

Barbara Demman, RN, MSN, ACNP, CNS

  Barbara Demman is a board certified acute care nurse practitioner and clinical nurse specialist. Her fifteen years of nursing clinical experience has ranged from large urban teaching hospitals in varying specialties to international community centers. She currently serves as lecturer and assistant program director at UCLA School of Nursing.

Barbara has a strong interest in decreasing burnout symptoms and compassion fatigue among health care providers using mindfulness based interventions. After experiencing her own burnout in 2008, she greatly values health promotion and wellness in nursing.  

 Weekly drop in sessions at UCLA School of Nursing, Workshop leader for School in Compassionate Action, Creator/Facilitator of six week courses for health care providers called S.H.A.R.P.- Stress in Healthcare: Awareness, Reduction, and Prevention.

Nikita Grupta

Nikita Gupta, MPH, CHES, RYT

Nikita Gupta is a passionate and dedicated resilience educator, program director, and mentor whose mission is to inspire individuals and groups to enhance their ability to thrive.

Nikita has been practicing and applying resilience-based approaches for over 22 years, utilizing many perspectives including energy management, mindful awareness, movement/breath, life coaching, and inspired-learning. She brings a wide field of interest and expertise to her work, including restorative yoga, growth mindset, health behavior theory, art, trauma-informed approaches to healing, and meditation.  

In 2014, Nikita created the innovative GRIT Peer Coaching Program, a peer-to-peer support service that offers personalized resilience coaching and wellness skill building to UCLA students who seek to actively engage in their personal growth and holistic success. In addition, Nikita conducts trainings with staff and students across campus, to enhance well-being, mindfulness, emotional intelligence and connection across many diverse communities including foster youth, undocumented students, first generation college students and LGBTQ students to name a few.  In addition, Nikita facilitates staff and student healing spaces to encourage growth, healing and empowerment for the individual and campus community. 

Eric Lopez-Maya

Eric López-Maya, Ph. D  
Email: eric.lopez@mindfulness.org.mx

Eric López-Maya, Ph.D., has an extensive background practicing mindfulness and integrating it into different scenarios. He directs the Mexican Institute for Mindfulness, a leading Institution in Mexico City that offers mindfulness-based interventions and professional trainings. He also collaborates with the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center in its Certification Program and is a PNI postdoctoral fellow at UCLA’s Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology. He is a clinical psychologist and a Ph.D. in Health Psychology and has led and collaborated in contemplative research projects in Mexico, United States and Germany. He holds a certificate in Mindfulness Facilitation from UCLA and is a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) certified teacher through the programs offered by the University of Massachusetts Medical School. He also teaches for the Mindful Schools Program. He thoroughly enjoys assisting others to learn and deepen their mindfulness practice.

Dr. Maya’s Mindfulness Facilitation:
Dr. Maya teaches Mindful Awareness Practices (MAPs) classes on campus, as well as a Spanish drop-in class every Wednesday from 6:30-7:00pm at 300 Medical Plaza in UCLA.

Darlene Mininni, PhD, MPH
Email: dmininni@unex.ucla.edu

Darlene Mininni

Darlene Mininni, PhD, MPH

Email: dmininni@unex.ucla.edu

Darlene Mininni is a Training & Organizational Development Consultant at UCLA Campus Human Resources.  She holds a PhD in clinical psychology and an MPH in public health. Dr. Mininni is author of The Emotional Toolkit: 7 Strategies to Nail Your Bad Feelings (St Martin’s Press), a book inspired by the curriculum of her UCLA undergraduate course LifeSkills. Her work focuses on designing and teaching research-based strategies that support resilience and success. With an interest in media’s power to transform, Dr. Mininni founded and was artistic director of UCLA’s Kaleidoscope Theatre, a performance troupe using storytelling to enhance wellbeing. She also hosted The Emotional Toolkit Series on XM radio and The Dr. Darlene Mininni Show for Clear Channel in Los Angeles. Dr. Mininni has spoken for audiences ranging from The Juilliard School to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and her work has been featured on media outlets such as: CNN with Dr. Sanjay Gupta, PBS, and NPR as well as Prevention, SELF and Huffington Post.

Dr. Mininni’s Mindfulness Facilitation:

UCLA Extension facilitates 30-minute weekly mindfulness sessions for staff called Mindful Wednesdays. These sessions are exclusively for Extension employees.

Lydell Joaquim Martin

Lydell Joaquim Martin
Email: lmartin@support.ucla.edu

Lydell Joaquim Martin is an Advocacy Coordinator in Marketing and Social Media, UCLA Government and Community Relations and is an emerging voice in the field of mindfulness. For over a decade, he has maintained a personal meditation practice as a method for cultivating inner stability of mind.  In 2015, he completed the Certification in Mindfulness Facilitation from UCLA and regularly leads drop-in mindfulness classes and organizational workshops. Lydell is committed to sharing mindfulness with diverse audiences. He founded Allpaths Mindful, a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization that organizes mindfulness events in community-based settings and raises public awareness about the benefits of mindfulness.

Lydell’s Mindfulness Facilitation:
Lydell facilitates monthly at Powell Library and fills in at venues across campus.

Sara D. Tucker

Sara D. Tucker, MBA

Email: sara.tucker@anderson.ucla.edu

Sara Tucker is director of the Coaching and Team Skills Program at UCLA Anderson School of Management. She coaches student teams to create productive team dynamics. She also coaches and teaches leadership and self-awareness among executives and graduate students. She also facilitates mindfulness meditation sessions at Anderson. Previously Ms. Tucker directed the Applied Management Research Program. She has a BA in East Asian Studies from Yale University and an MBA from UCLA Anderson. She is a Professional Certified Coach (PCC) through the International Coach Federation, the principal accrediting body of coaches internationally, and a certified somatic coach with extensive training in coaching that addresses the whole person. She completed UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center’s Training in Mindfulness Facilitation program.

Ms. Tucker’s Mindfulness Facilitation:

Ms. Tucker facilitates 30-minute weekly mindfulness sessions for staff and students at UCLA Anderson.  

Diana Winston

Diana Winston, Director of Mindfulness Education, Mindful Awareness Research Center (MARC)

Email: diwinston@mednet.ucla.edu

Diana Winston is the Director of Mindfulness Education at MARC and has been teaching mindfulness since 1993. She is the co-author (with Susan Smalley, Ph.D.) of Fully Present: The Science, Art, and Practice of Mindfulness (2010). She has brought mindful awareness into schools, hospitals, and nonprofits, as well as to adolescents, seniors, leaders, teachers, activists, and health professionals in the US and Asia. She is also the author of Wide Awake: A Buddhist Guide for Teens (2003) and the CD, "Mindful Meditations." Diana is also a member of the teacher's council at Spirit Rock Meditation Center in California. She spent a year as a Buddhist nun in Burma and has been practicing mindfulness meditation since 1989.

Diana Winston’s Mindfulness Facilitation:

Diana teaches widely across campus and beyond.  Check the MARC website for more information: http://marc.ucla.edu/

Zabie Yamasaki, M.Ed., Program Director, Trauma-Informed Yoga Programs

Email: zyamasaki@careprogram.ucla.edu

Zabie received her undergraduate degree in Psychology and Social Behavior and Education at the University of California, Irvine and completed her graduate work in Higher Education Administration and Student Affairs at The George Washington University. Zabie received her 200-hour yoga teacher training certificate through Core Power Yoga and attended a 40-hour workshop on trauma-sensitive yoga instruction through the Justice Resource Institute at the Kriplau Center for Yoga and Health. Zabie is the Program Director of Trauma Informed Yoga Programs at UCLA where she oversees alternative healing modalities for sexual trauma survivors including: trauma-informed yoga, drumming, journaling, dance, and art. She offers a number of wellness opportunities for UCLA students, including the Mind Body Balance for the Busy Bruin Program. She is the Founder of Transcending Sexual Trauma through Yoga, an organization with the mission of empowering survivors to heal through the practice of yoga. Her work has been highlighted on NBC News, the Huffington Post, OC Register, Elephant Journal, and in a variety of online publications.


It has been her dream to fuse her worlds together, creating a space where survivors can heal by flowing breath to movement through trauma-informed practice. For years, Zabie's unwavering support for trauma survivors has manifested itself in many forms. She has ultimately made it her life's goal to help empower survivors to regain their strength and self-worth.


Zabie is widely recognized for her hard work and dedication to her field. She has created a model therapeutic yoga program and curriculum which is now being implemented at 20 colleges campuses and agencies. By focusing on a holistic approach, Zabie is helping to change the way our world responds to trauma and provides support to survivors at various stages in their healing.