An initiative founded to reduce cognitive dissonance and garner an environment of cultural understanding among diverse student populations.

Email: calmwithkalaa@gmail.com 

Phone: 608-237-1966

  • Facebook
  • Instagram

© 2019 by the Calm with Kalaa Initiative. | All Rights Reserved  | Dancer in photos: Shruti Parthasarathy, Photos taken by: Sarah Monson

Meet The Team

Founder 

Shruti Parthasarathy

Shruti Parthasarathy, a senior at Middleton High School (MHS), has been learning Bharatanatyam since the age of five. She has performed in prestigious places across the US and India, and is currently under the tutelage of Guru Smt. Medha Hari (www.shrutipartha.com). She was a National Youngarts Finalist in 2018, and has repeatedly been a prize winner in national and international dance competitions.

Shruti is a research intern at the Consciousness in Health Lab, Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University, where she works on the psycho-social analysis of mindfulness behaviorsShe is also a research intern at the Cisler Lab, Department of Psychiatry, at University of Wisconsin - Madison. Here, she studies the neurocircuitry at risk for psychopathology after a traumatic event by helping process MRI brain imaging.

 

Additionally, Shruti is the youngest board member for Heart to Soul in Action, a national non profit that promotes healthcare and education in underserved communities. She is the founder of the first Wisconsin Chapter at MHS, and Project Reshape, which is an initiative striving to empower and help aid in the restoration of female equality among girls in rural India. 

Dr. David Victorson

Advisor of Research and Development

Dr. Victorson is a licensed clinical psychologist in the state of Illinois. As an Associate Professor of Medical Social Science in the Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, he directs the Consciousness in Health Research lab (www.consciousnessinhealth.org). His research focuses on advancing the evidence base of contemplative awareness practices such as yoga resilience and emotion regulation among cancer patient populations, developing novel digital health solutions to increase self management, and improving the precision and utility of self-reported outcomes. 

Dr. Victorson is the founder and director of TRUE NORTH TREKS (www.truenorthtreks.org), which is a cancer support nonprofit organization for teens and young adults. Additional professional roles are the following: a member of the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center (RHLCCC) at Northwestern University;  Research Co-Chair of the Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology Working Group at RHLCCC; Chair of the Research Working Group in the Academic Consortium of Integrative Medicine and Health; Research Faculty at the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine at Northwestern Medicine. 

Advisor of Artistic Creation

 

Medha Hari is hailed as one of the most promising Bharatanatyam dancers and is a senior disciples of Guru Smt.Anitha Guha. Medha is also currently pursuing advanced lessons in

abhinaya with Bharathanatyam exponent Smt. Bragha Bessell. Medha has matured into an

elegant dancer and has been giving solo performances all over India and abroad. Being

extremely passionate about dancing, she chose it as her profession despite being a qualified

Chartered Accountant. She was awarded the ‘Natana Bhava Padmam’ endowment for promising

young artiste from Brahma Gana Sabha (2019), ‘Natya Ratna’ by Trinity Arts Festival (2017), among numerous awards. 

 

Medha was chosen by the Govt of India to be a part of a 20 member youth delegation to South Korea in August 2014. She has worked with her guru in creating from the conceptualization to the final presentation of critically acclaimed dance productions. She is also a faculty member in her Guru’s school and assists in training junior and senior students for

competitions, performances and arangetrams.

 

 She has been regularly performing in almost all Sabhas in Chennai during the dance season. In August 2015 she was part of the troupe that toured 19 cities in North America as part of AIM For Seva to raise funds for education of underprivileged children in India.

Advisor of Volunteer Outreach

Rima Patel, a current medical student, holds a B.S. in Humanities in Science and an M.S. in Health Policy. She was a former medical management consultant and a founder of a health diabetes app called Diabetiz, which is a mobile and web solution for diabetic foot treatment intended to be used in Sri Lanka.

 

In addition, Rima has co-founded and currently serves as president of Heart to Soul in Action, a national non-profit organization whose mission is to promote healthcare and education for the youth in underserved communities in Boston, Houston, Philadelphia, and India. Here, she has conceptualized and executed several major projects for the organization. (www.hearttosoulinaction.org).

 

 Furthermore, Rima is passionate about global health and has a keen interest in mental health policy.

Advisor of Public Relations

Zeenat Vastrad, the director of Use Experience, In-Store and Digital, at Macy’s, has build world class design teams for Fortune 500 clients across North America, Asia, and Europe. She is driven by the desire to use her fundamental design principles to manually create better products and add value for an organization.

 

With over a decade of user intent driven designs, she focuses on the end to end user needs. Currently, Zeenat suprivises information architects, interaction designers, visual designers, content writers, usability analysts, web analytics, and design engineers. Some of her specialities include competitive analysis, collaborating with research, analytics, and innovation labs, TV, guiding designs, etc. Most importantly, she hopes to bring a smile to our participants through her work. 

Zeenat Vastrad
Medha Hari
Rima Patel