The CPS staff is comprised of licensed psychologists and counselors. CPS professionals are schooled in the fields of counseling and psychology from accredited training programs and have a special interest/expertise in college student development. CPS also hosts advanced graduate students earning their Master’s and Doctoral degrees who are practicing under the supervision of licensed staff members.

If you aren’t comfortable with your counselor for any reason, please address this directly with her/him. Sometimes it’s helpful for counselors to know if there are problems in the counseling relationship so they can try to make adjustments to help you feel more comfortable. Other times, it may not feel like a good match. Regardless, bringing it up with your counselor will assure that you get the services you need, and if a reassignment is necessary your current counselor can help facilitate this.

Our staff is listed below with a summary of their areas of interests or specialized training. All of our professionals have broad-based general therapy skills and training, so even if a certain topic or problem isn’t listed they can still work with your concern.

If you see someone you think you’d like to work with in counseling, feel free to make a request. However, please be aware that scheduling difficulties may make it difficult to honor all requests, and you may be assigned to another counselor in order to provide you with the fastest and most appropriate services possible.

Counseling and Psychological Services Staff

Betsy Asserson Portrait

Betsy Asserson, Ph.D.

Director

Licensed Psychologist


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A. in Psychology and Spanish, Concordia College

Advanced Degree:

Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology, University of Pittsburgh

Special Interests:

  • College Mental Health
  • Trauma and EMDR treatment
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy
  • Training and Supervision
  • Suicide Prevention
Brandi Fischer Portrait

Brandi Fischer, L.C.P.C. 

Senior Staff Counselor

Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A. in Elementary Education, University of Wyoming

Advanced Degree:

MS in Health and Human Development, Mental Health Counseling, Montana State University

Special Interests:

  • General College Mental Health Issues
  • Autism Spectrum Disorders
  • Anxiety Disorders
Brian Kassar Portrait

Brian Kassar, Psy.D.

Suicide Prevention Coordinator

Licensed Psychologist


Undergraduate Degree:

BA in Psychology & Sociology, Northwest Missouri State University

Advanced Degree:

MA in Clinical Psychology,

Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology, Illinois School of Professional Psychology

Special Interests:

  • College Mental Health
  • Men’s Development
  • Prevention & Education
  • Male Survivors of Sexual Trauma
  • Male Eating Disorder/Body Image
  • Identity and Developmental Issues
  • Depression & Anxiety Treatment
Catherine Francis

Catherine Francis, Psy.D

Groups Coordinator

Psychological Resident and Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor


Undergraduate Degree:

B.A. in Psychology and Spanish Language and Literature, University of Colorado at Boulder

Advanced Degrees:

Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology, Roosevelt University

M.A. in Clinical Psychology (Counseling Practice), Roosevelt University

Special interests:

  • College Mental Health
  • Group Therapy
  • Family of Origin Concerns
  • Identity Development
  • Interpersonal and Attachment Issues
  • Working with Under-Served Students
  • Mindfulness
Cheryl Blank Portrait

Cheryl Blank, Ph.D.

Assistant Director, Training

Licensed Psychologist; Licensed Addiction Counselor


Undergraduate Degree:

BSN in Nursing (Eastern Washington University)

Advanced Degrees:

MN in Psychosocial Nursing (University of Washington); Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology (Washington State University)

Special interests:

  • General mental health including:
    • Depression & anxiety
    • Grief and loss
    • Trauma
    • Women’s development
    • Dream work
    • Training and supervision
    • Relationship concerns
    • Development of self-understanding
Conrad

Conrad Burbank, Psy.D 

Senior Staff Psychologist/ Liaison to Veteran Services

Licensed Pyschologist

Undergraduate Degree:

B.S in Psychology from Montana State University

Advanced Degrees:

Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology from Alder University, Chicago, IL

Special Interests:

  • Veteran Mental Health
  • Student-Athletes 
  • Psychodynamic Psychotherapy
  • College Mental Health
  • Trauma 
  • Family of Origins
Hilary Burt

Hilary Burt, M.S.

Senior Staff Counselor

Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor


Undergraduate Degree:

B.A. in Environmental Studies, St. Lawrence University

Advanced Degrees:

M.S. Clinical Mental Health Counseling, University of Vermont

Special Interests:

  • College Mental Health
  • Depression and Anxiety Treatment
  • Mindfulness
  • Trauma
  • Social justice
John Siefke Portrait

John J. Siefke, Ph.D.

Assessment Coordinator

Licensed Psychologist 


Undergraduate Degree:

B.A. in Psychology, UCLA

Advanced Degrees:

M.A., Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology, Biola University – Rosemead School of Psychology

Special Interests:

  • Psychodynamic Theory
  • Assessment
  • Sport Psychology
  • Mindfulness
  • Philosophy of Science
Katie Darnell Portrait

Katie Darnell, Psy.D.

Research Coordinator

Licensed Psychologist


Undergraduate Degree:

B.S. in English and Women’s Studies, minor in Psychology—University of KY

Advanced Degrees:

PsyD in Clinical Psychology, Spalding University

Special Interests:

  • College Mental Health
  • Interpersonal issues
  • Mood and anxiety concerns
  • Eating disorder assessment and treatment
  • Group work
  • Personality assessment
Kevin Shon

Kevin Shon, MSW 

Staff Counselor, MSW

Professional Clinical Licensed Canidate


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.S. Forestry, West Virginia University

Advanced Degree:

MSW, West Virginia University 

Special Interests:

  • Anxiety and Depression
  • Adjustment challenges
  • Trauma
  • Mindfulness
  • Stress Reduction
Laura Thum Portrait

Laura Thum, Ph.D.

Assistanat Director of Outreach and Prevention

Licensed Psychologist, Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A. in Psychology, Whitman College

Advanced Degree:

M.A. in Mental Health Counseling, Antioch University New England

Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology, Western Michigan University

Special Interests:

  • College Mental Health
  • Attachment Theory
  • Wellness and Prevention
  • Outreach
  • Addiction
Levenae Buggs

Levenae Buggs, Ph.D. 

Senior Staff Counselor

Licensed Psychologist


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A. in Psychology, University of California, Davis

Advanced Degree:

M.A. in Clinical Psychology, University of South Dakota

Special Interests:

  • Multicultural Issues
  • College Mental Health
  • Anxiety and Depression
  • Relationship Issues
  • Adjustment
  • Identity Development
  • Serious and Persistent Mental Illness
  • Outreach
Mariah Hill Portrait

Mariah Hill, Psy.D.

Diversity Coordinator

Licensed Psychologist


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A. in Psychology, Rollins College

Advanced Degree:

Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology, Pacific University

Special Interests:

  • Multicultural & Identity Issues
  • Trauma
  • LGBTQ+ Identity
  • Relationship and Attachment Issues
  • Depression & Anxiety
  • Grief and loss
Megan Saab Portrait

Megan Monroe, Psy.D.

Training Specialist

Licensed Psychologist


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A. in Psychology and minor in Neuroscience, Miami University

Advanced Degree:

Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology, The Chicago School of Professional Psychology

Special Interests:

  • College Mental Health
  • Eating Concerns
  • Relationship Issues  
  • Life Transitions            
  • Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction
  • Trauma
  • Social Justice
  • Suicide Prevention
Mel Frost Portrait

Mel Frost, M.S., M.A.

Senior Staff Counselor

Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A. in Philosophy, University of Maine

Advanced Degree:

Master of Science in Health and Human Development, Mental Health Counseling, Montana State University

M.A. in Political Science, Boston College

Special Interests:

  • Depression and Anxiety
  • Trauma
  • LGBTQIQ Identity
  • Attachment
  • Relationships and Interpersonal Awareness
  • Identity Development
  • Family of Origin
  • Existential Concerns
  • Mindfulness
  • Somatic Experiencing
Melissa

Melissa Lelani Devencenzi, Psy.D 

Senior Staff Counselor


Undergraduate Degree: 

A.S. Criminology from Chaminade Univeristy of Honolulu

B.S Psychology from Chaminade University of Honolulu

Advanced Degree:

M.S Counseling, Pychology and Marriage and Family Therapy from California Baptist University

Psy. D Counseling Psychology from Springfield College

Special Interests:

  • Identity development and intersectionality
  • Gender, Race, Sexuality and Spirituality
  • Indigenous/Native healing
  • Decolonizing mental health
  • Interpersonal Relationships
  • Existentialism
Paige Vermaat Portrait

Paige Vermaat, M.S.W.

Care Manager

Licensed Clinical Social Worker


Undergraduate Degree: 

BSW, Eastern Nazarene College

Advanced Degree:

MSW, Grand Valley State University

Special Interests:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Self-Compassion
  • Family of Origin issues
Rachel Woodard

Rachel Woodard, L.C.P.C.

Senior Staff Counselor

Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A in Psychology

Advanced Degree:

M.A. Counseling

Special Interests:

  • Internal Family Systems
  • Collaborative Communication
  • Eating Concerns
  • Substance Use Disorders
  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Interpersonal and Attachment Issues
Ryan Niehus Portrait

Ryan Niehus, Psy.D.

Assistant Director, Coordinator of Clinical Services

Licensed Psychologist


Undergraduate Degree: 

BA in Psychology, University of California Riverside

Advanced Degree:

Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology, Pacific University

Special Interests:

  • College Mental Health
  • Sport Psychology
  • Interpersonal Group Therapy
  • Trauma related concerns
  • Training and Supervision
  • College Counseling Center Research
Sanaye Thompson

Sanaye Thompson, MSW 

Staff Counselor

Professional Clinical Licensed Canidate


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A. Mass Communication, Idaho State University 

Advanced Degree:

M.S. Northwest Nazarene University 

Special Interests:

  • Trauma
  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Life Transitions
  • College Mental Health
  • CBT & DBT therapies
  • Working with under-served populations
Sandy Newton Portrait

Sandy Newton, Ph.D.

Senior Staff Counselor

Licensed Psychologist


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A. in Political Science, University of Oregon

Advanced Degree:

Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology, University of Minnesota 

M.A. in Counseling Psychology, University of Minnesota

Special Interests:

  • Trauma
  • Emotional development and resiliency
  • Identity and marginalization
  • Decolonizing/indigenizing mental health practice
Lindsey Palagi photo

Lindsey Palagi 

Medical Records Administrator/ Office Manager

_____________________________________

Undergraduate Degree

B.A. Emmanuel College -Boston MA

Studio Art, Art Therapy and Psychology

Anna Forcell

Anna Forcelle, M.A.

Doctoral Intern


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A. Psychology

Advanced Degree

M.A in Clinical Psychology from George Fox University

Doctoral Candidate in Counseling Psychology George Fox University

Special Interests:

  • Post-trauma recovery
  • Family of origin issues
  • Grief/loss
  • Identity development
  • Spiritual Care and exploration
Honey Williams

Honey Williams , M.A.

Doctoral Intern


Undergraduate Degree: 

Undergraduate Degree:

B.S. in Psychology, Montana State University

Advanced Degrees:

M.S. in Clinical Psychology, Seattle Pacific University

Doctoral candidate in Clinical Psychology, Seattle Pacific University

Special Interests:

  • Mindfulness
  • Attachment Theory
  • Grief/Loss
  • Trauma and Posttraumatic Growth
  • Internal Family Systems
  • Authenticity and Self-Compassion
  • Emotion Regulation
Kelsey Gilleon

Kelsey Gilleon, M.A.

Doctoral Intern


Undergraduate Degree:  

B.A. in Psychology from University of Montana

Advanced Degree:

M.A. in Clinical Psychology, Alder University

Doctoral candidate in Clinical Psychology

Special Interests:

  • Identity development
  • Experiences of oppression
  • Trauma
  • Relationship concerns
  • Depression 
  • Self-compassion, body image & self-esteem
Tess Carrol Keeley

Tess Carroll Keeley, M.A. 

Doctoral Intern


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A. in English, Boston College

Advanced Degree:

M.A. in Clinical Psychology, University of Denver

Doctoral candidate in Clinical Psychology

 

Special Interests:

  • Family of origin concerns
  • Identity development
  • Relationship issues
  • Multicultural Issues
  • Depression and Anxiety
Alainna

Alaina Holmquist, B.A.

Masters Intern


Undergraduate Degree: 

Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Oklahoma State Universtity

Advanced Degree:

Pursuing a Masters of Science degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Montana State University

Carlynn

Carlynn Schwalm, B.A.

Masters Intern


Undergraduate Degree: 

B.A. Internations Studies and Spanish from University of Idaho

Advanced Degree:

Pursuing a Masters degree in Social Work 

Erica

Erica Blair, B.A.

Masters Interns


Undergraduate Degree:

B.S. Exercise Science, University of Montana

Advanced Degree:

Pursuing a degree of Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Montana State University

 


In addition to broad-based generalist psychotherapy skills, the staff members have training and expertise in the areas outlined in the table below.

Stress Management

Sport Psychology

Relationship Enhancement 

Grief and Loss

Anxiety Management

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder 

Incest/Sexual Abuse

Eating Disorders

Marital/Couple's Therapy

Sexual Dysfunction Therapy

Victims of Violence or Sexual Assault

Medical Psychology

Crisis/Emergency Assistance 

Biofeedback

Adult Children of Alcoholics

Male Survivors of Abuse

Psychological Assessment

Divorce Adjustment

Substance Use