Jennifer Leigh Selig


Jennifer Leigh Selig


First and foremost, I am a teacher. I taught high school English in a rural high school in Northern California for sixteen years and loved (almost) every moment of it. I wouldn’t have left if “No Child Left Behind” hadn’t left my soul behind, and the spirits of my students as well. I then moved my academic home to Pacifica Graduate Institute, where I’ve been for the last seven years. Pacifica is a school that teaches depth psychology and mythology, and honors the deep wisdom of the partially unconscious and always creative, storytelling psyche. There, my soul can breathe again, as I can honor my adult students and help them give birth to their waxing dreams as they perhaps are waning in life. At Pacifica, I have been able to create two hybrid programs (low residency with an online component), an MA in Engaged Humanities and the Creative Life, and an MA/PhD in Depth Psychology with an emphasis in Jungian and Archetypal Studies. In both programs, I have sought to create space for what Martin Luther King, Jr. called “the beloved community.” What has showed up has been entirely magiKal.


Carpinteria, CA, USA

What draws you to the STIA conference?

Two words in the title of the conference alone are good enough to hook me–"temenos" and "individuation." Both are what I have always sought to create as a teacher; one is the vessel, if you will, where transformation takes place (the classroom) and the other is what I believe is should be the goal of all good education, which is to assist the caterpillar in becoming its own unique butterfly.

What are you hoping to experience?

Community. Passion. Excitement. Synergy. A sense that yes, together we are empowered to create a better world. We are the people. Now is our time. (Shameless steal from Obama)

What are you most passionate about?

"And I hunted only your larger selves that walked the sky." A quote from "The Prophet" by Kahlil Gibran. This is what individuation means to me. This is what I devote my life for, my work to, to all of us being, becoming, hunting down and discovering our larger selves.

How do you see transformation occurring from this conference?

I am new to this conference–first year–so I don't know if I have a vision yet. I am cocking my head like a dog, curious.

What’s your bigger vision?

Always, it comes back to King's "beloved community," which I see as a community where everyone is loved, honored, welcomed, seen, and seen as beautiful, talented, gifted, and essential.

What needs to happen for you to evaluate this STIA+ experience as a success?

Look. Everyone has had the experience of attending conferences and walking away energized–in the moment. But when Monday morning rolls back around, it's back to business as usual. That's no more transformation than getting drunk on a Friday night and your shy self singing karaoke and waking up to regret it when the weekend is over. A success? Meaningful transformation which spills over from the conference temenos.