"We aspire to be one of the leading Ayurvedic Institutes in America with highly qualified Instructors engaged in teaching our courses. The majority hold B.A.M.S degrees from well-known Ayurvedic Colleges in India, and all are experienced teachers of Ayurveda who currently practice Ayurveda in the U.S."

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Ruth A. Small, Ph.D., Founder & Administrative Director,

BVI School of Ayurveda


Dr. Small, the Founder and our first Institute Administrative Director, is a former faculty member of Western Michigan University and has extensive experience in academia.  She a Trustee of The Sambodh Society, Inc. (TSSI) and energetically worked to help manifest the Sambodh Center for Human Excellence (SCHE, 2007), a Vedantic ashram and headquarters of TSSI, where she has played many roles since 1997, when she helped to  found The Sambodh Society, Inc. In 2010 she began developing programs in Ayurveda at the ashram which led to the formation of the Bodhananda Vedic Institute and its School of Ayurveda. She has been an advocate for, and a student of, Ayurveda since the mid-1980s when she was introduced to  Dr. Dolkar Khangkar (New Delhi) a Tibetan Ayurvedic doctor, on one of Ruth's many visits to India.

Dr. (Vaidya) Ashlesha Raut, B.A.M.&S., M.D. Ayur,

BVI Ayurveda Senior Faculty Member


Dr. (Vaidya) Ashlesha Raut is a third generation Vaidya who is classically trained in Ayurveda. She completed her B.A.M.S. (Bachelor of Ayurveda in Medicine and Surgery) and M.D. (Ayurveda) with specialization in Rasashastra & Bhaishajya Kalpana from the University of Mumbai (India). She was awarded the Gold medal for her M.D. Thesis. Dr.(Vaidya) Raut is  licensed in India as a Registered Medical Practitioner. In the U.S., Ashlesha is a Certified Nutritional Consultant, and Holistic Health Practitioner graduating both with High Honors. Also, she is a Registered Ayurvedic Specialist (RAS) and Board Certified in Integrative Medicine (BCIM) by the American Association of Integrative Medicine, MO. She has considerable experience in teaching of Ayurveda at various institutes in FL, TX, NC, IL, NY, NJ, MI and has been affiliated with BVI Ayurveda (MI) from its early days in 2010. She is a President of Council for Ayurveda Credentialing (CAC) which is helping to set professional standards for Ayurveda educational programs & institutions in the USA. Ashlesha continues her research, publishing articles in Ayurveda and presenting papers at various conferences such as NAMA, AAPNA etc. As a Director of Ayurveda at Ayurveda For Healing Inc., Dr. (Vaidya) Raut maintains an Ayurveda Wellness and Panchakarma center where she has her own Ayurveda practice and teaches Ayurveda courses in various universities and colleges in North America.

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William A. Courson, BVS, Ayurveda, Doctor of Ayurveda, Certified Herbalist, BVI Dean of Students, Internship Director & Faculty Member


Bill Courson is a graduate of the New Jersey Institute (NJIA) of Ayurveda where he received his first Diploma in Ayurveda (Dip. Ayur.). Subsequently, he earned a Bachelor's of Vedic Studies in Ayurveda (B.V.S.A.) from Sai Ayurvedic College (SAC) in Miami. He continues to teach and practice Ayurveda and holds Administrative positions at both institutions: Administrative Director, NJIA, and Dean for Institutional Development (SAC). Presently, he is a candidate for the Doctor of Ayurveda degree at SAC. He is a Certified Herbalist in the Western herbal tradition and maintains his Ayurveda practice in Montclair, NJ. Bill's affiliation with BVI began in 2010 as an Advisor, helping to formulate our ayurvedic school, and he continues, as a Dean, to guide the growth of both BVI and its students. He is the author of many professional articles, and videos of his lectures may be found on the internet.Bill is a Level III professional member (Ayurvedic Doctor) of the National Ayurvedic Medical Association.

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Dr. (Vaidya) Beena Vesikar, B.A.M.&S., M.D. Ayur., BVI Faculty Member


Dr. Beena Vesikar earned her B.A.M.&S. and M.D. (Ayurveda) degree from the University of Pune, India. She is a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT), a Licensed Massage Therapist (LMT), a Certified Clinical Nutrition Consultant, a NCBTMB Provider, and a Specialist in Ayurvedic Therapies and Panchakarma. In 2008 she founded the BeAyurvedic Wellness Center in Farmington, Hills, MI, where she maintains an ayurvedic practice. Among her specialties is the offering of Panchakarma treatments and retreats. In 2015 BVI welcomed Beena as a Faculty member.

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Kara Aubin, Ayurvedic Practitioner, E.RYT, C. Ay., & AYS,

BVI Ayurveda Faculty Member, Internship Mentor


Kara brings nearly two decades of teaching experience paired with a rich variety of clinical training to the BVI program both as a course instructor and Internship Mentor. She earned her Certificate as an Ayurvedic practitioner (C.Ay.) at the prestigious Ayurvedic Institute, Albuquerque, NM (1500 hrs). She attained credential from Yoga Alliance as an Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher (500 hours), and she has also completed training as a Holistic Health Coach (C.Ay). Having studied under Rod Stryker, she qualifies as a Certified ParaYoga Teacher (Level 1). Her credential as an Ayurvedic Yoga Specialist (AYS) was grated by the Himalayan Institute, Honesdale, PA, where she also is an Ayurvedic Herbalism Instructor.  She is the founder of Sva Sadhana, a Yoga and Ayurvedic training center located in  Kalamazoo, MI where she also maintains her own Ayurvedic Apothecary. Kara has traveled annually to study at the Vasanta Institute of Ayurveda (VIOA), Pune, India, where she was a AyurYoga Instructor and Apothecary Coordinator. Most recently she was appointed the Panchakarma Clinical Lead at VIOA.  In addition to teaching courses at the BVI School of Ayurveda, Kara will be mentoring our BVI students' client interactions and case studies and facilitating their fulfilling NAMA's Internship requirements. Our BVI students will make a site visit to Kara’s private practice located in downtown Kalamazoo as part of their internship clinical experience. 

"A physician is obligated to consider more than a diseased organ,

more even than the whole man - he must view the man in his world."

                                                                                                                                                                                            Harvey Cushing

Ayurveda Administration & Faculty

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Aparna Bapat, Ayurvedic Practitioner, Educator, Author, 

BVI Ayurveda Faculty Member since 2015

Dr. Aparna  Bapat is an Ayurvedic Vaidya (doctor) educated in India. She has practiced Ayurveda for over two decades in India, Europe, and in the US. She is a very successful Ayurveda practitioner and educator in the US. Dr.Bapat has practiced for 18 years in New York and has been teaching in many medical colleges and Ayurveda colleges across the US. Currently she is practicing in Florida, establishing both a panchakarma center and an education center for medical professionals so they can use Ayurveda as an adjunct therapy in their practice. In 2006 Dr. Bapat initiated her own a herbal formulation company to bring pure, ethically- made, authentic and natural Ayurvedic herbs to the US. From 2000 to 2009 she served on the  Board of directors of NAMA (National Ayurvedic Medical Association) and has been a  pioneer in promoting Ayurveda graduate education and starting Ayurveda colleges in the US and Canada including Miami, NewYork, Michigan, and Ottawa. Dr. Bapat has written numerous articles, given workshops and talks and has been on Television shows in Europe, US and South America to promote Ayurveda awareness. She is currently writing a book on,  Ayurveda: Mysteries, Miracles and Triumphs. Dr. Bapat's experience and expertise in Ayurvedic pulse reading, herbal formulas, panchakarma treatments is immensely valuable in assisting clients who have lost all hope in finding a sustainable remedy for their ailments. Her speciality includes treating neuro-musculoskeletal, digestive, endocrine, psychosomatic, and various disorders of the mind and body.

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"The doctor of the future will give no medication, but will interest his patients in

the care of the human frame, diet and in the cause and prevention of disease."                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Thomas Edison