Dr. Ram Bhagat is a longtime educator, arts innovator, and peacemaker. Ram is committed to healing trauma in classrooms, communities, and consciousness. He is an international conflict resolution trainer for the Richmond Peace Education Center (RPEC) and the visionary behind the Richmond Youth Peace Project (RYPP), a dynamic program that promotes a culture of nonviolence to the city’s youth, through innovative, youth-led peacemaking initiatives. He also serves as board president for The Conciliation Project (TCP), which uses active and challenging dramatic works to promote open and honest dialogue about racism and oppression in America in order to repair its damaging legacy.
Dr. Bhagat is actively involved in healing the effects of racial trauma within the Black community, leading Emotional Emancipation (EE) Circles in Virginia. Ram was an inaugural member of the International Healing and Rebuilding Our Communities (HROC) training for trainers in Burundi, East Africa, held August 2011. This transformative program facilitates healing community trauma, particularly trauma caused by violence, war, and genocide. Ram began teaching Strategies for Trauma Awareness and Resilience (STAR) in 2017, as an apprentice with Elaine Zook-Barge.
In the late 1990s, Ram co-founded Drums No Guns (DNG) world percussion ensemble to engage youth in “healing community with rhythm.” More than a decade later, DNG continues to work with youth traumatized by gun violence around the country.
Dr. Bhagat uses the drum to unite people of all ages, of all races. The award winning science teacher created an innovative 3D curriculum, based on the principles of Aesthetic Education and arts integration, which infused drumming, dance, and drama into the chemistry curriculum.
His approach to understanding trauma and resilience is rooted in the science of yoga and culturally responsive mindfulness practices. He has been studying various forms of yoga with Dr. Janeshwar Upadyay since 1975 and completed Integral Yoga teacher training in 2001.
A native son of New Haven, Conn., Ram lives with his blended family in Richmond, VA. He is currently finishing the post-graduate certificate in restorative justice here at EMU.