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Cristen Wathen, PhD, LCPC, NCC

Cristen Wathen

Assistant Professor and Program Leader, Mental Health Counseling

220 Herrick Hall
Montana State University
Bozeman, MT 59717-3540 | 406.994.3274


Dr. Cristen Wathen is an Assistant Professor in the Counseling Program in the Department of Health and Human Development at MSU.  She is a licensed clinical professional counselor in Montana, a licensed professional counselor in Idaho and a Nationally Certified Counselor.  Cristen earned her Ph.D. from Idaho State University in Counselor Education and Counseling, her master's degree in Community Counseling from Baylor University in Waco, TX, and her BA in Biblical Studies and History from Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, AR.  She loves qualitative research, teaching, dance, yoga, the Razorbacks, and working with clients on spiritual issues.  Professionally, Cristen has experience training and supervising counselors, writing and presenting in her field, and working with sexual abuse survivors, college students, and a wide variety of other clients.  Her research centers on multicultural development of counselors through international experiences.  She is also interested in sexual abuse and trauma counseling in Montana.  Between her master's and doctoral work, Wathen worked clinically as a counselor specializing in sexual abuse and assault.  She also led the Support and Empowerment Program for Single Parents at McLennan Community College in Waco, TX, and was an Academic Advisor for the Teacher Development Center at the University of Texas at Dallas.  Cristen mentored and counseled college students at Baylor University's Career Counseling Center and Academic Support Program as well.  She worked as a counselor at Idaho State University's Counseling and Testing Center during her doctoral work. 


  • PhD, Idaho State University
  • MS, Baylor University
  • BA, Ouachita Baptist University

Selected Publications

Peer reviewed:

Wathen, C. & Kleist, D. (2015).  Internationalization of Counselor Education: Exploring the lived experiences of counselors-in-training internationally.  To be published January 2015, The Qualitative Report.

*Kostohryz, K., Wells, P., Wathen, C. & Wilson, D. (2014). More than a vacation: Exploring the impact of reentry for international sojourners.Journal of Mental Health Counseling, 36(4), 315-327.

Bohecker, L., Wathen, C., Wells, P., Salazar, B. (2013). Mindfully educating our future: A group curriculum for training emergent counselors.  Journal for Specialists in Group Work, 39(3), 257-273. doi: 10.1080/01933922.2014.919046.

Wells, P. & Wathen, C. (2013).   Our photos, our voices. In J.S. Glass and K. Dotson-Blake (Eds.), Online group activities to enhance counselor education (pp. 65-71). Alexandria, VA: Association for Specialists in Group Work. 

*Gardner, R., Adkins, J., Gillespie, W. & Wathen, C. (2012).  Needs assessment for counseling GLBT clients. Vistas 2012. Alexandria, VA: American Counseling Association. 

Harrawood, L., Wathen, C. & Nelson, J. (2012).  Music and lyrics: Understanding addiction cravings. ACA-ACC Creative Interventions and Activities Clearinghouse, Charter Member.

Harrawood, L., McClure, C. & Nelson, J. (2011). Using experiential activities to prepare counselors-in-training to understand the power of cravings when addressing clients with addiction.  Journal of Creativity in Mental Health, 6(2), 105-117, doi:10.1080/15401383.2011.579872.

Non-peer reviewed:

Wathen, C. (Fall, 2013). “The only normal people are the ones you don’t know very well.” ASERVIC Interaction Newsletter, XIII(1), 7-8).

Bohecker, L. & Wathen, C. (Summer, 2013).  Two personal perspectives on spirituality in the counseling classroom. ASERVICInteraction Newsletter, XII(4), 10-11.