Creatives need a place to realign their spirit with their calling in the world. And guess what – we’re all meant to be creatives!
Our focus is on inclusive education that responds to the overly structured and siloed nature of spiritual, educational, and health/wellness experiences in the US.
At Seahurst Wellness in Education Center, we merge alternative approaches to health, education and spirituality with the standard fare. For children: we flesh out the messiness of the learning process in a way that enables students to make their learning their own and imbues their quest for knowledge with wisdom and purpose.
We foster a posture of spiritual humility and an embrace of openness, mystery and curiosity rather than one of closure, judgment and critique. We prefer and advocate for a lifestyle of self-examination, and an anti-racist/anti-oppressive practice, over a passive and unreflectively “religious” and “intellectual” mindset. We call for a reinhabiting of the Christlike aspects of Christianity.
A Message from Founder Erin Michael
I ended my full-time, 10-year career as a department chair, language learning specialist and classroom teacher in 2018. Around the same time, I abandoned my intentions of becoming an ordained mainline Christian minister. Both moves were informed by a growing awareness of my gifts of supplementing rather than leading instruction or word and sacrament. I realized my call was to address the unmet spiritual needs of my students in the classroom and the parishioners in the pews as a partner-leader and not a leader.
Seahurst Wellness in Education Center is a center committed to consciousness-raising, health and wellness, and spirituality in the educational process, Christian faith, and the public sphere.
Solid Research Informs the Scope of the Work
Both shame and scandal frequent the lives of many humans on their journey to living the full lives they’re meant to live. I finished my Bachelor’s at UC Berkeley (2007), exploring the phenomena of shame, scandal and public shaming in an honors thesis on the dialogical and theatrical function of scandal in the works of Dostoevsky, graduating summa cum laude and receiving the departmental citation in excellence in undergraduate research.
I later studied Russian linguistics and culture at Moscow State University as a Fulbright Scholar (2010) before going on to earn two MA degrees from UC Davis, one in Comparative Literature in Russian and French (2013) and one in German Language and Literature (2014), with certificates in second language acquisition and critical theory. My Master’s thesis examined the intersection of Christian mysticism and existentialism, and what we would now call trauma and mental illness in selections from 18th – early 20th century Western literature. I also taught sections of courses on literature of fantasy and the supernatural, which examined literature through the lens of psychology and psychoanalysis.
10 Years of Experience as Educator and Educational Leader Informs the Approach
I taught Spanish, German, Russian and French as foreign languages, in addition to English, Literature and Psychoanalysis, English as a Second Language, and Translation/Interpreting in public schools and universities, full-time, from 2009-2018.
A Ministry Mindset Shapes the Relationships
In addition to being a trained hospice volunteer and Stephen Minister, from 2016-2017 I was a ministry intern at a Baptist church where I preached and delivered the sacraments. I explored many spiritual paths before becoming exclusively Christian, and so my Christian faith is infused with many Christian and non-Christian traditions.
For all of the education, all of the religious studies, all the ministry internships and seminary classes, I learned that love is love is love.