Our Staff


 

Senior Leadership

MCCOWAN, CARLA J. (she, her, hers)
cmccowan@illinois.edu
Director
Ph.D., Counseling Psychology, University of Kentucky
Licensed Clinical Psychologist, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: Integrative with emphasis on interpersonal and developmental theories; short-term interventions often derived from cognitive theories; I practice from a multicultural and feminist framework.

Professional Interests: Multicultural and feminist issues, identity development, counseling issues with African-American women and men, career development, utilization of group therapy with people of color, treatment of anxiety, strategic planning and implementation.

HU, TZU-AN (he, him, his)

thu@illinois.edu
Associate Director of Training
Co-Chair, International Student Outreach
Ph.D., Counseling Psychology, University at Buffalo
Licensed Clinical Psychologist, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: I integrate Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and mindfulness approaches along with a focus on the interpersonal dynamics within the therapeutic relationship.

Professional Interests: Individual and group therapy; multicultural concerns, international students, and men’s issues; mindfulness practice; perfectionism; adjustment issues; grief and loss; spirituality; relationship issues; depression and anxiety; multilingual counseling (Mandarin).

STOCK, SUE (she, her, hers)

srstock@illinois.edu
Associate Director of Clinical Services
Ph.D., Counseling Psychology, Iowa State University
Licensed Clinical Psychologist, Illinois

Theoretical Orientation:  I believe that counseling is a collaborative process where the expertise of both client and therapist combine for the best results. I work from a framework that includes multicultural, interpersonal, and feminist perspectives, and use mindfulness-based, emotion-focused, and experiential techniques.  I work to be grounded in an awareness of intersectionality and how privilege and oppression shape how we experience the world.  In terms of clinical supervision, I draw on many of the previously named concepts and theories, and work from a developmental, collaborative stance.

Professional Interests:   I enjoying working with clients in individual and group therapy; supervising graduate students and new professionals; and providing outreach and prevention. I am interested in identity development, models of holistic health, actively promoting social justice, relational/family issues, and shame.  I am inspired by Liberation Psychology and am transitioning my identity from “ally” to “co-conspirator.”  I appreciate that the administrative part of my role allows me to encourage change on systemic and organizational levels. 

WEATHERSBY, DEIDRE (she, her, hers)
daweath@illinois.edu
Associate Director for Outreach and Prevention
|Ph.D., Counseling Psychology, Loyola University Chicago
Licensed Clinical Psychologist, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: Integrative including person-centered approaches, interpersonal process theory, behavioral modification with considerations for multicultural counseling theories

Professional Interests: Race-related stress, healthy ways of coping and cultural identity models within ethnic minority groups.  I am also committed to  prevention and outreach as well as advocacy work in counseling settings. My approach to supervision is much like my clinical approach in that my feminist leanings support a collaborative process and shared power in the clinical and supervision setting. I enjoy working with general themes of concerns for college students particularly anxiety, depression, stress, adjustment concerns, grief, identity development and other mood concerns. 

Assistant Directors

BARNUM, EMILY (she, her, hers)
elbarnum@illinois.edu
Senior Assistant Director of Administration
Clinical Counselor
Ph.D., Counseling Psychology, Ball State University
Licensed Clinical Psychologist, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: I work from an approach that incorporates humanistic-existential, feminist and multicultural orientations. I also use mindfulness and experiential techniques to empower students.

Professional Interests: My professional interests include complex trauma (e.g. experiences of child abuse, interpersonal violence and sexual violence) as well as concerns with interpersonal relationships and self-esteem. I also have strong professional interests with concerns related to gender and sexuality. In addition, I very much enjoy working with individuals exploring their cultural and personal identities.

BOUDREAUX, CHARLES (he, him, his)
ctboudr@illinois.edu
Assistant Director of Clinical Services
Clinical Counselor
Ph.D., Counseling Psychology, University of Minnesota--Twin Cities
Licensed Clinical Psychologist

Theoretical Orientation: My entire career has been spent working with college students, and I am grateful to be able to do so!  I am integrative, starting within a client-centered approach (warm, respectful, curious), to which I add developmental, cognitive-behavioral, and existential elements; family systems/systems generally; all filtered through a multicultural, feminist lens.  I am trained in eye movement desensitization and reprocessing therapy (EMDR) for trauma work.

Professional Interests: Trauma, family systems, chronic illness and disability, neurodiversity, intersection of one's identities, student veterans and military-connected students, grief and loss, relationship concerns, career development, clinicians-in-training, and students in the fine arts (particularly music) and group therapy.

FINKILL, CARRIE (she, her, hers)
cfinkill@illinois.edu
Assistant Director of Outreach and Prevention
Embedded Counselor, Housing
M.A. Professional Counseling, Olivet Nazarene University
Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor, Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: I use a client centered approach that incorporates skill building and a focus on positive solutions through CBT, DBT, and crisis intervention. My intent is to meet clients where they are, provide a safe space, and empower them to identify who they are, why they do what they do, and what to do next.

Professional Interests: Depression, anxiety, attachment issues, trauma, grief and loss, identity, crisis intervention, issues of race, gender and class.

 

HOUSE, JENNIFER (she, her, hers)
jhouse@illinois.edu
Assistant Director, Embedded Program
Embedded Counselor, Gies College of Business
M.S.W., School of Social Work, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Licensed Clinical Social Worker, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: I use a strengths-based approach in therapy and utilize elements of motivational interviewing, solution-focused brief theory and crisis-intervention theory.  I meet clients where they are at, recognizing that each person and situation benefits from their own, unique approach.

Professional Interests: Substance use, trauma, grief and loss, crisis intervention, issues of race, gender and class, anxiety, depression, medical comorbidities.

 

RICKETTS, PATRICIA (she, her, hers)
pricktts@illinois.edu
Assistant Director of Training
Clinical Counselor
Co-Chair, Trauma Outreach
Ph.D., Clinical Psychology, Long Island University
Licensed Clinical Psychologist, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: Integrative, interventions drawn from short-term psychodynamic models that incorporate developmental, cognitive behavioral methods, existential, and interpersonal techniques

Professional Interests: Complex psychological trauma (includes early childhood abuse, traumatic loss, sexual assault, and PTSD), anxiety and mood disorders, psychotherapy integration, dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), and identity issues.

 

Clinical Staff

BROWN, TALISHA (she, her, hers)
tbposey2@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
M.A., Clinical Psychology, Eastern Illinois University
Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC)

Theoretical Orientation: My clinical practices include influences from cognitive behavior therapy, solution-focused, psychodynamic and interpersonal therapies. My approaches are strengths-based, client-centered and harm reduction.

Professional Interests: My professional interests include couples and family counseling, AOD issues (specifically in African American communities), working with family members who have been effected by substance abuse and/or dependence, mood disorders, stress management, grief and loss, trauma.

 

COURTWRIGHT, QUINCY A. (she, her, hers)
quincyk@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
MA, Clinical Psychology, Eastern Illinois University
Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: Person-centered with emphasis on Dialectical Behavioral Therapy; short-term interventions often with a focus on crisis situations/etiologies; I practice from a brief, solution-focused framework.

Professional Interests: Group therapy, anxiety-related distress, health and wellness, trauma/crisis management, grief, interpersonal relationships, and identity development.

 

 

CUMMINGS, CARLTON (he, him, they, them)
cumming4@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
Ph.D., Clinical Psychology, Palo Alto University

Theoretical Orientation: I integrate a psychodynamic framework with family systems, social justice, behavioral-cognitive perspectives. At the core of my work resides the assertions that relational experiences shape our beliefs about the world, others, and ourselves, dictating our perspectives and behaviors. I believe the therapeutic process of building, exploring, and healing depends on both the client and therapist maintaining a commitment to acknowledging and enduring distress in a goal-oriented manner.

Professional Interests: Identity development, diversity/multicultural issues, social justice, self-compassion, historical trauma, minority stress, Black student concerns, and LGBTQIA+ student concerns.

 

FERNANDES, MEGAN ANTONIA (she, her, hers)
meganaf@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
Psy.D., Clinical Psychology, The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, Chicago

Theoretical Orientation: My clinical work is highly integrative, drawing from person-centered, systems approach, grounded in a multi-cultural feminist framework. I honor the therapeutic experience as an inclusive, safe, collaborative, exploratory space for the well-being of the person as a whole, rather than just changing a set of problem behaviors. I'm a keen believer that increased insight of oneself is the key to healing and empowerment.

Professional Interests: Intersectional feminism, identity development, cultural identity negotiations, international student concerns, immigrant student challenges, first generation student concerns, LGBTQIA+ challenges, social justice advocacy, power, privilege and oppression, trauma, suicide prevention, grief and loss, anxiety disorders, depression, outreach and prevention and group therapy.

 

FYNN, LIZZ (she,her, hers)
efynn@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
Psy.D., Clinical Psychology, The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, Chicago

Theoretical Orientation:  The therapy space is meant to be a safe place for clients to explore, learn about themselves, and gain insight about their worldview.  I work from a psychodynamic framework with a relational lens. This means that together we explore interpersonal relationships and the patterns that often show up in clients’ lives. I also emphasize the importance of the therapeutic relationship and collaboration between the client and therapist. Utilizing time-limited approaches, I try to set building blocks to help clients start to reach a better level of functioning.

Professional Interests: marginalized and underserved communities, LGBTQ+ issues and identity development/exploration, BIPOC issues, racial trauma, Black mental health, intersectionality, psychosis, complex trauma, social justice, first generation students, training and supervision

GRANTHAM, KAMAU (he, him, his)|
grantham@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
Co-Chair, Sankofa Black Student Outreach Team
Ph.D., Clinical Psychology, St. John’s University
 

Theoretical Orientation: I primarily work from a Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) perspective while also integrating solution-focused brief therapy, self-compassion, psychoanalysis, and mindfulness to assist students in gaining a greater understanding of themselves and the world around them.

Professional Interests: Multicultural counseling, cultural identity development, African American mental health, stress management, life transitions, and athletics.

 

HAMILTON, SHACIARRA (she, her, hers)
sh62@illinois.edu
Co-Chair, Sankofa Black Student Outreach Team
Inner Voices Social Issues Theatre Consultant
Clinical Counselor
Psy.D., The Chicago School of Professional Psychology at Xavier University

Theoretical Orientation: I work from a culturally-sensitive integrative framework that utilizes various approaches including person-centered, cognitive-behavioral, systems, and multicultural approaches. I emphasize a collaborative approach to therapeutic work with clients.

Professional Interests: I am interested in many of the broad range of issues that clinicians in College Counseling centers are fortunate to be able to assist clients with, including but not limited to, multicultural and diversity issues, identity development, trauma, race-related stress, social justice, interpersonal issues, disordered eating, and anxiety disorders.

 

HEGEMAN, KURT (he, him, his)
khegeman@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
M.A., Clinical Psychology, Eastern Illinois University
Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC)
Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CADC)

Theoretical Orientation: Emphasis on cognitive-behavioral, strength-based, psychodynamic, family systems approaches

Professional Interests: Group therapy (AOD and men’s issues), AOD assessments, AOD outreach and consultation, mood disorders, individual counseling, couples and family therapy.

 

LANKER, ELISE (she, her, hers)
lanker1@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
Co-Chair, Queers and Allies Committee
M.S.W., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Licensed Clinical Social Worker, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: I work from the belief that counseling is a sacred space and opportunity for individuals to be heard and respected. I utilize an integrative client-centered approach in which the client is expert of their own experience, wants, and needs. I work to empower my clients through a feminist lens with an emphasis on social justice.

Professional Interests: I am interested in working with all kinds to discover their intrinsic value, with special interest in survivors of interpersonal violence, Queer and questioning individuals, and those working through the intersections of their salient identities.

LEMAY, MICHELLE (she, her, hers)
mlemay@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
Co-Chair, Eating Disorders Treatment and Outreach Team
M.S., Ph.D., Clinical Psychology, Idaho State University
Licensed Clinical Psychologist, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: I approach my clinical work from an integrative approach that best fits the needs of my client, but have a strong foundation in Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). I work from a holistic approach and believe that counseling is a collaborative process working towards an agreed upon goal.

Professional Interests: Anxiety, eating/body image concerns, LGBTQAI+ identity concerns, depression, relationship distress, perfectionism, social skills, ADHD, intellectual/developmental disabilities, and training/education.

LESUEUR, IAN (he, him, his)
ilesueu2@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
Co-Chair, Eating Disorders Treatment and Outreach Team
Ph.D., Counseling Psychology, Seton Hall University
Licensed Clinical Psychologist, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: Although I work from a predominantly humanistic perspective, I am integrative in my approach and often incorporate aspects of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Existential Psychology, and mindfulness-based interventions into treatment. I believe that a strong and safe therapeutic relationship is the central vehicle for change. With this understanding, I view my work as collaborative and strive to bring empathy, authenticity, and compassion into every therapeutic encounter.

Professional Interests: Depression and anxiety, eating disorders and body image, existential concerns among college students, positive psychology, meaning in life, spirituality, identity development, men’s issues, and concerns related to gender and sexuality.

LOFTON, CHRISTOPHER (he, him, his)
clofton2@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor/Crisis Triage Manager
M.S.W., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Licensed Clinical Social Worker, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: I take an integrative approach to clinical work and use techniques of several different therapies based on the needs of individual clients. The therapeutic orientations I pull from include person-centered, cognitive-behavioral and DBT, ACT, multicultural and feminist.

Professional Interests: My main professional interests include working with people who are in crisis/distress and case management. I am interested in working with a variety of different concerns including anxiety, trauma, and alcohol and other drug concerns. I also have a strong professional interest in working with students of color, particularly Black students. 

LUTEN, ROBBIE (she, her, hers)
rluten@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
Ph.D. Counseling Psychology, University of Kentucky

Theoretical Orientation: I utilize an integrative approach focusing on person-centered, cognitive behavioral, acceptance and commitment, social justice, and emotion-focused perspectives. I believe it is important to utilize the therapeutic process and work with clients to create a safe, warm, collaborative environment for healing, exploration, and developing their own authentic sense of self.

Professional Interests: diversity/multicultural issues, identity development, LGBTQ+ identity, social justice, BIPOC, and Black student mental health issues.

 

QUINTANILLA, ALEX (he, they, him, them)
abq@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
M.S.W., University of California, Berkeley
Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Theoretical Orientation: My treatment approach is client-centered, solution-focused, and skills-based. My hope is to support people by creating a safe space where they can reflect on how their life is going and to think about the constructive changes they want to see happen in their lives, while providing some skills that can help them in their journey. The skills that I draw from are from evidenced-based practices. These include cognitive behavioral therapy, mindfulness, cue-centered therapy, motivational interviewing, child-parent psychotherapy, trauma-focused CBT, dialectical behavioral therapy, and the circle of security parenting model.

Professional Interests: My interests focus on improving the mental health of those who experience depression, anxiety, have a history of trauma, and have a difficult time coping. I have experience working with individuals, couples, families, parents, and children. My personal history influences my work, interests, and my commitment to mental health practice. I came to the U.S. as an undocumented immigrant from El Salvador, I am a survivor of a home with domestic abuse, I am an individual who had to grow up by developing multiple cultural identities, I am a first-generation college student, and as an undergrad I transferred from a community college.

SMITH, MATILDA (she, her, hers)
smith119@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
M.S.W., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Licensed Clinical Social Worker, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy, Strength-Based framework,  Mindfulness-Based Therapeutic Approach, and Family Systems. I believe in meeting students “where they are”, supporting them as a catalyst for change, and building good rapport to increase their investment in the important work of positive change.

Professional Interests: Trauma-Based Care, African-American mental health issues, LGBTQ issues, Community Outreach, animal-assisted interventions (veterinary social work), Mindfulness-Based Practice, and Geek Therapy.

SONG, YIXING (she, her, hers)
yixing@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
Ph.D., Counseling Psychology, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

Theoretical Orientation: My approach to therapy is mainly based on Relational Cultural Theory (RCT) which emphasis considerations of relational needs as well as the role of power. In therapy, I am dedicated to creating a safe and non-judgmental space for everyone to vulnerably experience, process and then become more aware of the concerns and ourselves. I also tend to use a strength-based approach to empower clients to find their autonomy, understand the impact of culture and power on their experiences, and identify their own meaning in life.

Professional Interests: My areas of professional interests include interpersonal relational concerns, family of origin concerns, cultural adjustment/adjustment issues, identity development, eating disorders and body image issues, anxiety, depression, trauma/racial trauma, and international student issues. Can provide counseling in Mandarin.

WALAG, JR (he, him, his)
walag2@illinois.edu
Clinical Triage Counselor
MSW, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Theoretical Orientation: I work from a strengths-based approach and make every effort to provide a space for individuals to feel supported and safe. I also lean heavily on the systems theory perspective, with the thought that an individual’s behavior (and by extension, belief system, values,  coping mechanisms, etc.)  are largely formed by many intersecting domains and integrate Psychodynamic theory to help people examine the underlying reasons why they may make decisions or behave the way they do.

Professional Interests: Suicide Prevention, Veterans Issues, Anxiety, Depression, Re/Adjustment issues, Outreach, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Trauma, Mindfulness, “Whacky” behaviors, Problem-Solving.



Embedded Counselors

BULDAK, STEPHANIE (she,her, hers)
sprado2@illinois.edu
Embedded Counselor--College of Applied Health Sciences
M.S.W., University of Illinois at Chicago
Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW)

Theoretical Orientation: I approach counseling with a compassionate and empathetic heart. My wish is to provide a safe space for the individual to speak their truth. I have an integrative approach to counseling which is solution focused and supportive of the individual as the experts in their own lives. I utilize elements of ACT, optimistic therapy as well as harm reduction theory.

Professional Interests: Trauma informed care, harm reduction approach, self-soothing, self-accepting ways to approach relationships, identity development, and social justice

 

CANADA, KELLI (she, her, hers)
kcanada@illinois.edu
Embeddedd Counselor, Division of General Studies
M.S.W. Saint Louis University
Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Theoretical Orientation: I strive in every way to meet the students right where they are in this moment of their lives. I am committed to helping the student feel comfortable and to listen with empathy so I truly understand their unique needs as we work together to achieve the best outcomes. I utilize different approaches to include but not limited to: Person Centered Approach, Strength Based, Behaviorism, and Cognitive Behavior Therapy.

Professional Interests: I am a naturally curious individual, I enjoy problem solving and educating others on thought distortions and how anxiety can impact our lives. I'm interested in how perception and interpretation have a large influence on our mental health and how important it is to acknowledge and address these areas. I love learning all things about the physical brain and mental health.

 

DEUTSCH, BRYAN (he, him, his)
bmdeuts2@illinois.edu
Embedded Counselor, Fine and Applied Arts
M.S.W. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Theoretical Orientation: Humanistic/existential. I am familiar with and enjoy utilizing Acceptance Commitment Therapy, Solution-Focused Brief Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, and Advanced Safety Planning Intervention.

Professional Interests: Group therapy, crisis intervention, suicide prevention, and of course, the process of self-actualization and mental health recovery.

 

GEORGE, JUVENAL (he, him, his)
juvegeor@illinois.edu
Embedded Counselor, The Grainger College of Engineering

Chair, Latinx Student Outreach Team
Psy.D. Clinical Psychology, Adler University (Chicago Campus)
Licensed Clinical Psychologist, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: I work primarily from a client-centered, multicultural, and trauma-informed lens integrating therapeutic elements from Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), and mindfulness-based approaches. I focus on holding a space for students to feel grounded, supported, and inspired to work towards their respective values and improve their mental health.

Professional Interests: My professional interests include working with Latinx, BIPOC, and first-generation college students; trauma and stress, mindfulness, depression, anxiety, cultural identity issues, resiliency, loss and grief, men’s issues, life transitions and adjustments. I enjoy providing individual counseling, group counseling, and consultation services in English and Spanish to students and faculty/staff. 

LAYNG, MARK (he, him, his)
mlayng@illinois.edu
Embedded Counselor--College of Agriculture, Consumer and Environmental Science
M.S., Pittsburg State University
Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor 

Theoretical Orientation:  I am passionate about helping students defeat their stress so they can have a University of Illinois experience they will treasure for the rest of their lives.  I believe students have the potential for great lives, and I am honored to walk alongside them through part of their journey to give encouragement, support and new perspectives.  The theories and techniques I use are designed to help the student to develop new pathways of thinking, behavior, and emotion; resulting in greater confidence and skill in facing the pressures of their lives.  Most commonly, I use Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

Professional Interests: Developing strategies to deal with anxiety, stress, depression, struggles with substance use, and cross-cultural adjustment. 

 

LEWIS, CHRISTOPHER (he, him, his)
cwlewis2@illinois.edu
Embedded Counselor, Grainger College of Engineering
M.S.W., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Theoretical Orientation: I utilize an integrative approach that draws from Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical-Behavioral Therapy (DBT) while utilizing a person-centered lens to magnify the experiences of clients. My practice is also influenced by the existential and humanistic models of therapy with the goal of creating an environment where clients are empowered to confront their fears, embrace their authentic selves and realize the strength that lies within them. I have experience in crisis intervention in both the Champaign/Urbana communities and with emerging adults on college campuses.

Professional Interests: Multiculturalism, identity development, suicide prevention, crisis management, mental health stigma reduction in African-American communities, ADHD assessment, relationship/family issues and shame.

NOVINSKA, ANDREW (he, him, his)
anovinsk@illinois.edu
Embedded Counselor, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
M.S. Mental Health Counseling, University of Wisconsin—Stout
Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC)

Theoretical Orientation: While I utilize an integrative style, my clinical baseline is a person-centered (Rogerian) approach that is informed by Attachment Theory, Existential Therapy and Evolutionary Psychology.

Professional Interests: My professional interests include family of origin issues, substance abuse and/or dependence, mood disorders, marginalized populations and first-generation college students.

 

POSZET, EMESE (she, her, hers)
eposzet@illinois.edu
Embedded Clinical Counselor, College of Education
MSW, Wilfrid Laurier University, Canada
Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW)

Theoretical Orientation: I believe in having collaborative conversations with people to learn about their strengths to build coping skills that will assist them in navigating challenging circumstances, life transitions, and crises in relationships. Working from an integrative framework, my therapeutic method includes elements from cognitive behavior therapy as well as client-centered and solution-focused approaches. 

Professional Interests: I enjoy learning each person’s unique story and personal experience while working together to develop the insight and strategies to create a meaningful change in their life. My personal history makes it special to work with international students to help them overcome their everyday challenges. Additionally, I have broad-ranging experience working with community-based, and crisis-driven mental health services.  I am also interested in working with persons with ADHD and/or reading/writing difficulties to improve their skills to overcome their day-to-day problems.

VERKLAN, MAGGIE (she, her, they, their)
mverkla2@illinois.edu
Embedded Clinical Counselor, College of Law
MSW, University of Illinois Urbana Champaign
Licensed Clinical Social Work (LCSW)
 

Theoretical Orientation: I have an overall integrative approach in my clinical work. I couch this in a feminist perspective and often incorporate mindfulness and somatic practices to support overall health and recovery.

Professional Interests: My professional interests center around systems, structural determinants of health, neurobiology and somatic awareness, stress and stress management, spirituality, as well as family of origin issues, intergenerational impact, and self-identity.

Contract Staff

AVIRAM AMY (she, her, hers)
cc-aaviram@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
Masters in Social Work, University of Chicago
Licensed Clinical Social Worker, State of Illinois

Theoretical Approach: My approach to therapy involves collaborating with clients to understand how their life experiences and cultural context shape who they are.  As we understand ourselves, we develop the capacity to decide if and how we would like things to be different. By cultivating relationships and developing skills and habits we bring that change to fruition.  I strive for clients to feel safe, supported, and empowered to embrace their authentic selves and recognize their own strengths. 


Professional Interests:  I enjoy meeting with a variety of students, with special interests in: family and relationship issues, trauma, resiliency, identity development, immigration and acculturation issues, and first generation student concerns.

MARTINEZ, SUZANNE (she, her, hers)
smartnz@illinois.edu
Clinical Counselor
Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, Illinois
M.A., Marriage & Family Studies, Phillips Graduate Institute

Theoretical Orientation: I can help you with concerns of anxiety, depression, relationship problems with family, roommates, and friends. I can assist you with those mental blocks that you may encounter with any life challenge. I can support you to find different campus and community resources. In today’s competitive and busy society, it is easy to feel like you have to do everything alone—you do not! In therapy we will explore, talk, and learn how to do life. I am here to help. All you have to do is just ask.

Professional Interests: Anxiety Reduction, Depression, Stress Management, Performance Enhancement, Relationships

2023-24 Doctoral Interns

BAKSHI, SRUTIKA (she, her, hers)
sbakshi@illinois.edu
Doctoral Intern
M.A., The Chicago School of Professional Psychology

Theoretical Orientation: I believe lived experiences shape us as individuals and how we perceive life, which is why it’s important to find congruence and meaning within one’s life. Thus, I utilize an integrative approach incorporating systems, humanistic, and multicultural frameworks. My goal in working with my clients is to empower them to achieve what they need while providing a safe and culturally sensitive space to explore who they are.

Professional Interests: My interests include outreach and prevention, group and individual therapy, psychological assessments, cultural identity issues/ solutions, BIPOC, interpersonal issues, family of origin issues, international student concerns, trauma, psychosis, grief and loss, and mood disorders.

 

 

CHAE, ASHLEY (she, her, hers)
achae@illinois.edu
Doctoral Intern
M.A. Fuller Graduate School of Psychology and Marriage and Family Therapy
 

Theoretical Orientation: I use an integrative approach and primarily work from a psychodynamic framework, meaning I believe it is important to understand how people’s upbringing and relationships impact who they are today. I understand young adulthood is a formative time and I hope to collaborate with and empower clients from a culturally responsive and curious posture. Ultimately, I hope to create a warm, safe, and nonjudgmental space that fosters exploration and growth.

Professional Interests: I am passionate about advocating for accessibility to mental health services by addressing the social and physical barriers to mental health care. My other interests include identity issues/development, spirituality, social justice, intersectionality, and mindfulness.

 

MORALES, JASMINE (she, her, ella)
jmoral51@illinois.edu
Doctoral Intern
M.A. Northwest University
 

Theoretical Orientation: I take an integrative approach that tailors techniques from several different therapies to meet the individual needs of each client. I most often combine person-centered, strengths-based, multicultural, emotion-focused, and trauma-informed frameworks in my work with clients. I believe healing and growth comes from a supportive, collaborative, and warm environment where individuals feel safe enough to genuinely explore their story and are inspired to work towards creating a life that is authentic and meaningful.

Professional Interests: My professional interests include marginalized/underserved communities, outreach and prevention, social justice and advocacy, immigration/acculturation challenges, cultural coping skills/resilience, acute/complex trauma, LGTBQIA+ concerns, identity development, arts-based healing, holistic health, spirituality, and mindfulness. Additionally, I am very passionate about working with students of color, particularly Latina/o students.

RIVAS, DAVID (he, him, el)
drivas@illinois.edu
Doctoral Intern
M.S., Albizu University

Theoretical orientation: There is no “one-size-fits-all” in therapy, and healing is not linear. I consider my clients’ needs and contexts when identifying an approach to better address their presenting problems. As well as incorporate affirmative and culturally sensitive lenses into my work and provide a collaborative therapeutic space. My training emphasized cognitive behavioral approaches (i.e., CBT, ACT).

Professional Interests: LGBTQIA+ challenges; trans affirmative therapy; mood disorders; substance use disorders; stress; grief; outreach and prevention.

 

 

Professional Staff

EVANS, NICHOLE (she, her, hers)
nlevans@illinois.edu
Media Communications Coordinator
Co-Chair, Suicide Prevention Outreach
M.A., Speech Communication, Miami University of Ohio

Professional Interests: I have a background in rhetorical scholarship that focuses on issues of social justice and experience in marketing communications for both corporations and non-profits. My position at the Counseling Center allows me to combine both my academic interests and my applied communications experience. I’m currently focusing on developing a more interactive and accessible Counseling Center website and determining how we can use social media and other emerging technologies to better communicate with and serve our students.

 

FAY, LISA (she, her, hers)
lfay@illinois.edu
Program Coordinator, INNER VOICES Social Issues Theatre
MFA, INTERDISCIPLINARY ARTIST, Goddard College

Professional Interests: My professional interests include art as inquiry and research, the potential of the arts to effect deep social change, live theatre as a catalyst for civic dialogue and engagement in community, the generating of original ensemble-based performance work, the study of systems and whole systems design, and humor.

 

 

MANZI, KRISTIN (she, her, hers)
kmanz2@illinois.edu
Clinical Specialist in Education, ACE IT Program
Co-Chair, Alcohol and Other Drug Outreach
M.S.W., Illinois State University
Licensed Clinical Social Worker, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: I work from a perspective of skill building, utilizing person-centered and solution-focused interventions, and linking with harm-reduction approaches to assist a person in feeling empowered and in charge of their healing. Community connections and recognizing the physical/emotional health connection are also part of my values.

Professional Interests: Building community connections and working from a social justice perspective, incorporating mindfulness and holistic health/wellness, mentorship and allyship to help the next generation of leaders be successful, substance use, trauma informed practice, and self-care/burnout prevention

SCHLESINGER, REBECCA (she, her, hers)

schlesi2@illinois.edu
Paraprofessional Coordinator
M.A., Ph.D., Counseling Psychology, University of Akron
Licensed Clinical Psychologist, State of Illinois

Theoretical Orientation: Integrative approach that primarily draws from person-centered/humanistic therapy, interpersonal process therapy, and feminist therapy.

Professional Interests: Identity development, minority stress, power/privilege & oppression, LGBTQ+ identity, life transitions, relational concerns, anxiety, resilience, prevention and outreach.

 

SUN, SHENGXI (she, her, hers)
ssun44@illinois.edu
Research Data Analyst
MPH, Epidemiology, University of Illinois Chicago

Professional Interests: Coming from an epidemiology background, I hold a special interest in statistical analysis and epidemiological methods. With an extensive experience in data collection and extraction, I also have a strong foundation in both quantitative and qualitative research. My greatest passion is to utilize my skills and expertise to help with the assessment and evaluation initiatives for the Counseling Center.

 

 

Canine Associate

Louis Barnum (he, him, his)
Canine Associate
AKC Certified Therapy Dog
Alliance of Therapy Dogs

Theoretical Orientation: I work from a Rogerian Approach, specifically I am intrigued by Unconditional Paws-itive Regard. This means that I believe in connection, empathy, love, acceptance and of course, ear scratches.

Professional Interests: My professional interests include meeting with students to enhance their stress management skills, connection and of course to engage in the meaningful work of fun and leash-ure!

*Louis works primarily with his mom, Dr. Emily Barnum. He is not present in the office daily so he can participate in researching the best places to take naps.

 

Office Support Services

BARKER, MARY (she, her, hers)
Human Resources Associate
mdietz@illinois.edu

 

 

 

 

 

ALMARAZ-LEONOR, NURY (she, her, hers)
Office Support Specialist
nalmaraz@illinois.edu

 

 

 

 

HOLLINS, NATALIE (she, her, hers)
Office Support Associate
nhollins@illinois.edu

 

 

 

 

 

SNIPES, ARIANA (she, her, hers)
Office Support Specialist
amhelm2@illinois.edu

 

 

 

 

THARP, DEBRA (she, her, hers)
Office Manager
dftharp@illinois.edu

 

 

 

 

   

VEGA, NICKY (she, her, hers)
Office Support Associate
xnvega17@illinois.edu

 

 

 

 

WOODALL, ROBIN (she, her, hers)
Administrative Assistant
rwoodall@illinois.edu

 

 

 

 

 

 

2023-24 Practicum Counselors and MSW Intern

Left to right:Jon Shapiro, Taylor Eastwood, Kam MacNear, Whitney Clark, Chris Elmi, and Ravon Pittman.

2022-23 Graduate Assistants

ACE IT: Emilia Barajas
Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention: Megan Mahoney
API Roots Outreach: Emma Aculado
Assessment and Evaluation: Rose Smith
Black Student Outreach (Sankofa): Jessica Parks
Eating Disorders: Gabby Drong and Luis Gutierrez
INNER VOICES Social Issues Theatre: Victor Ruiz-Divas
Integrative Health and Wellness: Diana Lesmes Palacios
International Student Outreach: Maria Angel
Latinx Student Outreach: Karina Roman-Rivera
Q & A LGBT Outreach: Evaristo Rios 
Outreach & Prevention: Madison Oakes
Paraprofessional Program: Alyssa Aguirre
Technology-Based Outreach: Katie Badger
Trauma Outreach: Torie Thoman