The Appalachian State University campus is currently operating under SPECIAL conditions.
The university remains open, with emergency management protocols activated and operational modifications and precautions in place to support social distancing. In-person instruction has transitioned to a system of alternative course delivery. View the latest information on the App State Coronavirus Information website. Read the latest update posted 4/6/2020 at 5:20 p.m.
Staff Counselor, Consultant to Athletics Department (Pronouns: she, her, hers)
Licensed Psychological Associate in North Carolina Education: Bachelor's of Art, Princeton University
Masters in Clinical Psychology, Appalachian State University Internship: New River Behavioral Healthcare
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Heidi has worked at the ASU Counseling Center in varying capacities since 2004 and comes from a background in community and school-based mental health, where she learned to appreciate working in integrated, interdisciplinary health services settings. Heidi works with a wide range of issues, including depression and suicide, trauma, anxiety, women’s issues, eating concerns, and relationship and attachment problems, and is particularly interested in the connection between mental health and nature. Heidi has a strong passion for working with underserved and marginalized populations and currently co-facilitates the Transgender Therapy Group at the Counseling Center. For the past 2.5 years, Heidi has served in a new role as the primary liaison between the Counseling Center and the Athletics Department, which she views as its own cultural entity.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Heidi has a holistic, collaborative approach to therapy. Her theoretical orientation is integrative, primarily drawing from humanistic, interpersonal process, and relational-cultural and feminist perspectives. Heidi frequently incorporates mindfulness, cognitive-behavioral, and dialectical behavioral techniques into her work. She has a strong belief in every person's capacity for growth and healing and views her role as therapist as creating an affirming, inclusive space to foster change and potential.
Personal Interests: Heidi cherishes spending time with her family and loved ones, especially going on outdoor adventures with her husband and two children. She is an avid runner, cyclist, and skier and takes any opportunity to get out in the mountains of the High Country. Heidi is also a keen traveler and especially enjoys experiencing different cultures. In her quieter moments, she enjoys yoga, reading, and gardening.
Jacob Cooper, Ph.D.
Staff Psychologist, Student-Athlete Services Coordinator (Pronouns: he, him, his) Doctorate Program: Counseling Psychology - Sport and Performance track, Boston University Doctoral Internship: Charles George VA Medical Center, Asheville N.C.
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Jacob has specific training and experience in Sport and Performance Psychology and has worked with athletes at the college and professional level over the course of his career. Additionally, he has a strong interest in Military Psychology, having worked with military personnel prior to their deployments as well as veterans transitioning back to civilian life.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Jacob's approach is based within the integrative model and can best be described as client-centered, collaborative, and trauma-informed. To this end, he strives to consider the unique culture and lived experiences of each client, and draws from theory rooted in interpersonal and existential psychology. He values working from a strength-based perspective and deploys a variety of empirically-based therapy modalities, such as acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), and Motivational Interviewing (MI) to help clients reach their goals.
Personal Interests: Jacob enjoys training for, competing in, and watching any and all forms of athletics. He also enjoys cross-cultural travels, adventures in the wilderness, spending time with his wife and family, and strives to do at least one thing a day that scares him a little.
Alison Davis-Waddle, Ph.D.
Staff Psychologist, Assessment Coordinator (Pronouns: she, her, hers) Doctorate Program: Clinical Psychology at East Tennessee State University Doctoral Internship: Appalachian State University
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Alison enjoys working with college students with a broad range of presenting concerns; however, her primary interest is working with students with eating concerns. Alison additionally enjoys providing supervision and training to graduate students who are interested in the available opportunities at CAPS.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Alison's approach to counseling comes from a highly person-centered and humanistic background. She utilizes a collaborative and integrative approach to therapy, meeting students where they are to help them be as successful as possible. She aspires to create a safe space for all students to explore their strengths and growth areas, while developing strategies to make positive changes in their lives. Dont be surprised if Harry Potter metaphors become a large part of our work together.
Personal Interests: Alison enjoys spending time with her husband and son, binge-watching Netflix series, drinking Starbucks coffee, reading, and sleeping in on weekends.
Scott A. Dula, (LCSW)
Referral Coordinator (Pronouns: he, him, his)
Bachelor's Degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from Appalachian State University,
Masters in Social Work from Appalachian State University with a concentration in Individual/Family Counseling.
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Scott likes to utilize "Strengths Based Perspective" to meet students where they are in their college journey, and assist them in connecting with community resources that will best meet their needs. In addition, he incorporates Cognitive-Behavioral therapy into his Individual Therapy practices when working with students.
Personal Interests: Scott enjoys anything outdoors, time with his family, video games, and traveling to new places.
Kate Fishman, Ph.D.
Staff Psychologist, Assessment Coordinator (Pronouns: she, her, hers)
Licensed Psychologist in North Carolina Doctorate Program: Counseling Psychology, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale Doctoral Internship: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Kate is a generalist by training, but she has a specialization in working with students who have experienced IPV and other types of trauma. She additionally has passion for working with students concerns related to interpersonal relationships, identity development, and adjustment for first-generation college students.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Kate’s theoretical orientation is rooted in relational-cultural, feminist, and multicultural modalities. She believes that clients are the experts of their own lives and works with students to help them to name their experiences as they go through the healing process. She often uses mindfulness and self-compassion techniques to help empower clients in their journey. Kate also enjoys incorporating creative expression into her work with clients as a way of processing experiences that are difficult to talk about verbally.
Personal Interests: Kate grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She comes from a multiracial family with diversity related to ability status and religious identification. Although she is from a city, Kate learned to love living the small-town life when she lived in the Shawnee National Forest in graduate school. In her free time, Kate loves hiking the trails of the Blue Ridge Mountains, spending time with friends, and knitting.
Christopher Hogan, Ph.D.
Director (Pronouns: he, him, his)
Licensed Psychologist in North Carolina Doctorate Program: Counseling Psychology, Virginia Commonwealth University Doctoral Internship: Appalachian State University
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Chris has a particular interest in the relationship between physical and mental health, men's issues, mindfulness, research in clinical settings, and program evaluation.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Chris is respectful of each individual and focuses on the development of the whole person. He integrates interpersonal and cognitive-behavioral therapy into his work with students, while also emphasizing a client-centered, mindfulness, and multicultural approach.
Personal Interests: In his spare time, Chris enjoys spending time with his family; sports and exercise, whether it be heading to the gym, hiking a trail, or watching a game on T.V.; traveling and exploring new places; and the challenges of learning how to do new home improvement projects.
Julie Keys, Psy.D.
Associate Director/Clinical Director/Coordinator of Emergency Services/Contract Staff Coordinator, Master's Training Coordinator (Pronouns: she, her, hers)
Licensed Psychologist in North Carolina Doctorate Program: Clinical Psychology, University of Denver Doctoral Internship: Southern Illinois University, Carbondale
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Julie works with a wide variety of concerns, but has a particular passion for working with trauma, sexual assault, identity development, LGBTQ issues, and emotion regulation difficulties. She has a strong interest in and passion for helping individuals explore their intersecting identities and the ways in which they move through the systems in place in the community and in the world. In addition to this, she also enjoys group therapy, supervision, and training.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Julie’s approach to working with clients is collaborative and integrative. Her approach is multicultural, trauma-informed, rooted in interpersonal therapy, and draws from existential, mindfulness-based, and Dialectical Behavioral therapy (DBT) modalities. She values the unique nature of each individual, as well as their values, goals, and strengths.
Personal Interests: In her free time, Julie enjoys spending time with her friends and family, cooking, reading good books, and watching puppy videos on YouTube.
Emily K. Lazar, Psy.D.
Staff Psychologist, Outreach Coordinator, Co-coordinator of Mental Health Ambassadors (Pronouns: she, her, hers) Doctorate Program: Clinical Psychology, Indiana University of Pennsylvania Doctoral Internship: Appalachian State University
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Emily has trained in university counseling centers and a rural community mental health center. She has also worked as an advisor for students on academic probation and been involved with the campus group Active Minds. In addition to providing individual therapy, Emily enjoys group therapy and campus outreach and prevention. She is also particularly interested in working with first generation college students, academic and career concerns, phobias, self-harm, grief and loss, suicide prevention, issues of social justice, and reducing stigma around seeking mental health care.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Emily's approach to counseling is collaborative, emphasizing the therapeutic relationship and students' goals and strengths. She primarily integrates principles of interpersonal, cognitive-behavioral, mindfulness-based, and dialectical behavior therapies.
Personal Interests: In her free time, Emily enjoys spending time with loved ones, traveling, creative writing, cooking, biking, drinking tea, and watching British TV.
Leslie Martin, Ph.D.
Associate Director/Director of Training/Co-Coordinator of Mental Health Ambassadors (Pronouns: she, her, hers)
Licensed Psychologist in North Carolina Doctorate Program: Counseling Psychology, Auburn University Doctoral Internship: University of Hawaii at Manoa
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Leslie’s areas of interest include the training and supervision of new and emerging professionals. She also enjoys career counseling, working with non-traditional students, and helping students who are navigating identity-related and developmental concerns. Leslie is passionate about prevention and outreach efforts, and loves working with the Appalachian State Mental Health Ambassadors, a program she co-created and co-coordinates with Dr. Denise Lovin.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Leslie’s approach to working with clients is collaborative, and she prefers a holistic integrative approach to treatment that incorporates cognitive-behavioral, interpersonal, existential, and client-centered techniques. Leslie recognizes that there is no “one size fits all” approach to therapy and tries to tailor her interventions to each client’s unique needs and preferences. The value of authenticity is appreciated and modeled in Leslie’s therapy sessions.
Personal Interests: Leslie’s interests and hobbies include playing pranks on her co-workers, spending time with her family, enjoying the outdoors, armchair traveling, magic, and robots. Okay, she’s not really into magic and robots, but she does love to read five books at once, listen to good music, and spend money on shoes.
Matthew C. Morgan, Psy.D.
Staff Psychologist Doctorate Program: La Salle University Doctoral Internship: Immaculata Consortium: Belmont Behavioral Hospital Outpatient Program
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Matt has experience working in inpatient psychiatric hospitals, community mental health clinics, and college counseling centers and has worked with most varieties of psychological distress and illness. He has particular interests in mindfulness-based interventions and psychosis, but believes that all varieties of psychological distress inform aspects of the human experience.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Initially, Matt focuses on building understanding and appreciation of others’ experience, and drawing out the processes which contribute to distress. After mutually acceptable consensus is reached, he will likely encourage informed and relevant experimentations in self-awareness practices, daily habits, and styles of interaction. Matt’s primary training is in cognitive-behavioral and mindfulness-oriented treatment approaches, and is informed by a variety of perspectives, including evolutionary, psychodynamic, existential and transpersonal.
Personal Interests: Matt enjoys spending time with friends, absurdity and nonsense, creating and performing music, team-oriented video games, learning, exercise, and cooking.
Audrey Stone, M.A.
Staff Counselor, Groups Coordinator (Pronouns: she, her, hers)
Licensed Professional Counselor in North Carolina, Registered Expressive Arts Therapist Graduate Program: Master in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Graduate Certificate in Expressive Arts Therapy, Appalachian State University Masters Internship: Counseling & Psychological Services Center, Appalachian State University
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Audrey is a generalist by training, and as such enjoys working with students with a broad variety of presenting concerns. These commonly include anxiety, depression, relationship issues, trauma, grief, and eating concerns. Special areas of interest include group therapy, campus outreach, connecting with traditionally under-served student populations, and the therapeutic use of art for healing and self-expression.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Audrey uses an integrative, person-centered approach to therapy that draws on mindfulness, interpersonal processing, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and expressive arts therapy. She strives to incorporate a multicultural perspective into her work, acknowledging and valuing the many identities that shape her clients' unique experiences in the world. She places great importance on authenticity, support, challenge, and even humor in her sessions.
Personal Interests: In her free time she enjoys gardening, crafting, the occasional Netflix binge, and hiking with her dog, Margo.
Registered Therapy Dog (Pronouns: she, her, hers)
"Margo is a registered therapy dog with the Alliance of Therapy Dogs and is also an American Kennel Club Canine Good Citizen. (What's the difference between a therapy animal, service animal, and emotional support animal?) She accompanies her mom and therapy partner, Audrey, to some individual therapy sessions and outreach events for the Counseling Center. She is a rescue dog and is believed to be an Australian Shepherd/Catahoula Leopard dog mix. Margo's interests include treats, belly rubs, and hiking. Feel free to say hello if you see her around campus!"
Gayatri Titus, Ph.D.
Staff Counselor, Coordinator of Multicultural Services (Pronouns: she, her, hers)
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in North Carolina Doctorate Program: Marriage and Family Therapy, Texas Tech University Doctoral Internship: Family Therapy Clinic, Texas Tech University; Department of Family Medicine, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Post-doctoral Fellowship: Marriage and Family Therapy with an emphasis in Primary Care, Department of Family Medicine, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Gayatri has training as a marriage and family therapist and also in the field of medical family therapy working with people from different cultural contexts and countries. Some of the areas of interest include multicultural sensitivity, mindfulness and meditation, dealing with health related issues, coping with stress, life transitions, cultural adjustment, grief and loss, self-care, emotional well-being, self-esteem, communication, relational issues and helping people achieve a better balance in life.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Gayatri is collaborative in her therapeutic approach and is interested in helping people discover and celebrate their uniqueness, gifts, and strengths so as to create more happiness and joy in their lives and relationships. She enjoys helping people figure out what their dreams are and how they can achieve them.
Personal Interests: Gayatri enjoys learning about new cultures and their cuisines, traveling, baking, writing, gardening, listening to music, reading, meditating, and painting.
Ashley R. Wilson, Psy.D., HSP-P
Staff Psychologist, Coordinator of Eating Concerns Treatment Team (Pronouns: she, her, hers)
Licensed Psychologist in North Carolina Doctorate Program: Clinical Psychology, University of Indianapolis Doctoral Internship: University of Tennessee-Knoxville, Student Counseling Center
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Ashley comes to ASU with a background in health psychology and has trained in university counseling, hopsital settings, and community mental health. She is especially passionate about work with trans* students, queer-identified students, students of color, and students struggling with other issues of marginalization. Ashley has specialized training in the treatment of eating disorders and coordinates the interdisciplinary Eating Concerns Treatment Team for the Counseling Center.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Ashley takes a holistic approach to treatment, but above all, believes that change begins with the client-therapist relationship. Working from a Gestalt perspective within a multicultural framework, her therapy style is heavily relational with an emphasis on power dynamics and their impact on interpersonal process. She frequently incorporates experiential and body-focused interventions with techniques from cognitive-behavioral, dialectical behavioral, and emotion-focused therapies. Ashley strives to work collaboratively to facilitate holistic healing and well-living for all of her clients.
Personal Interests: Ashley's favorite place to be is outdoors with her husband and daughter- especially if it involves hiking or camping. To quench her creative side, she also loves baking, gardening, and woodworking. Her favorite pastime, however, is teaming up with her daughter to raise swallowtail butterflies in their backyard.
Ashley Phillips, B.S.
Administative Assistant (Pronouns: she, her, hers) Undergraduate Program: Bachelor of Science in Psychology, Concentration in Human Services, Appalachian State University
Personal Interests: In Ashley’s free time she enjoys spending time with friends and family, painting, curling up with a good book, and hiking with her dog, Avery.
Office Manager (Pronouns: she, her, hers)
Personal Interests: As a native of Florida, Dawn enjoys camping, boating, kayaking, and reading a good book. She loves spending time with her family. Dawn states that "I miss the beach and the feel of the sand between my toes."
Sammy L. Hartley, B.S.
Systems Administrator, Titanium Schedule System Administrator, Webpages Administrator
(Pronouns: he, him, his) Undergraduate Program: Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education, History, Appalachian State University
Personal Interests: Among Sammy's interest are spending time with family and friends, learning new concepts, ideologies, and methodolgies in a number of fields, history, music (all forms), guitar, photography, art, reading, sports, television, and working with computers and various software programs. He enjoys doing research and the creative part of the writing process.
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Kelly comes to CAPS with a background in counseling psychology and has experience working at university counseling centers, private practice, outpatient community mental health and inpatient hospital settings. Her clinical interests include, but are not limited to, eating disorders/body image, family concerns, vocational/career issues, LGBTQIAA concerns, academic performance, and spirituality/religious concerns.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Kelly works from an integrative lens, but particularly uses interventions from motivational interviewing (MI) and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). In the spirit of MI and CBT, she believes that therapy involves an active partnership between the therapist and the client. She takes a strengths-based approach, and thinks that clients generally have within them much of what is needed to make the changes they wish, and that her work as a therapist involves evoking these qualities.
Personal Interests: Kelly enjoys playing tennis, reading classics and science fiction novels, and watching reruns of Law & Order.
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Matt enjoys working with clients on a wide variety of presenting concerns. He has a particular interest in working with individual differences within the therapy relationship. Matt is also highly interested in clinical training and administration.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Matt works from a collaborative and integrative perspective that is tailored to each unique client. He actively incorporates the client's preferences, the most up-to-date research evidence, and routine clinical feedback in treatment. Matt also places a central focus on the development and maintenance of a strong therapeutic relationship and enjoys working through challenging interpersonal moments in therapy. Matt utilizes evidence-based interventions from CBT, client-centered, DBT, EFT, interpersonal therapy, MI, mindfulness, and psychodynamic therapy approaches.
Personal Interests: Outside the counseling center, Matt enjoys cooking, playing guitar, and swimming.
Jenna Tomalski, M.S., CMPC
Doctoral Psychology Intern (Pronouns: she, her, hers) Doctoral Program: Counseling Psychology, University of North Texas
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Working within a collegiate setting, Jenna thoroughly enjoys counseling individuals presenting with a variety of concerns, such as general/social anxiety, relationship concerns, and identity development/exploration. Further, Jenna is especially enthusiastic about working with student-athletes on both the individual and team levels. Her primary clinical and research interests include the psychology of sport injury and rehabilitation, student-athlete mental health, and disordered eating and body image.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Jenna’s approach to counseling is quite collaborative in nature, and she strives to empower clients to take an active role in the counseling process. Primarily, Jenna’s work is informed from an Acceptance and Commitment Therapy lens; however, she thoughtfully integrates perspectives and techniques from other theoretical frameworks to best fit with clients’ needs based on their unique identities and experiences.
Personal Interests: Jenna’s favorite pastimes include finding scenic running routes, exploring beautiful hiking trials, creating dozens of Spotify playlists, binge-watching classic Netflix shows, and spending quality time with friends and family. In her free time, Jenna also loves relaxing and swinging on her hammock while listening to true crime comedy podcasts.
Nicole DeFerrari, Psy.D.
Postdoctoral Psychology Resident (Pronouns: she, her, hers) Masters Program: M.A. in Psychology w/ a concentration in Sport & Exercise Psychology, Chatham University (Pittsburgh, PA) Doctorate Program: Psy.D. in Counseling Psychology, Chatham University (Pittsburgh, PA) Doctoral Internship:The University Counseling Center at Florida State University (Tallahassee, FL)
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Nicole is new to App State this year and comes from a background with strong generalist training in university counseling centers and specialized training in sport and exercise psychology. She enjoys working with all types of students across a wide variety of concerns; some of which include depression, social anxiety, body image struggles, identity concerns, multicultural concerns, and relationship issues. Nicole is especially passionate about providing both individual and group therapy to student-athletes and to students who have chronic and/or invisible illnesses.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: Nicole greatly values and respects that each individual student brings their own unique lived experience to therapy. Therefore, she uses an approach that's integrative of humanism, psychodynamic, and dialectical behavioral therapy to tailor treatment to the needs of each student based on that lived experience. She believes that effective therapy is grounded in a strong and supportive therapeutic relationship allowing for students to challenge themselves and use their strengths to grow through whatever their concern may be.
Personal Interests: Nicole is originally from Pittsburgh, PA, and is an avid sports fan of all of her hometown teams. She has spent the last couple of years hiking different trails in upstate New York and is really excited to explore the hiking opportunities here in Boone this year. In her free time she enjoys travelling, cooking, baking, spending time with friends & family, and relaxing with a good cup of coffee while binge-watching her favorite Netflix shows.
Post Masters Resident
J. Blake Crooks, M.A., LPCA, NCC
Post Masters Fellow (Pronouns: he, him, his) Graduate Program:Clinical Mental Health Counseling with certificate in Systemic Multicultural Counseling, Appalachian State University Graduate Internship:Counseling & Psychological Services Center, Appalachian State University
Professional Interests / Areas of Expertise: Although Blake enjoys working with a variety of presenting concerns, he has particular interest in supporting students that identify as LGBTQ+, first-generation, and/or other marginalized groups. Blake, as a first generation student and member of the LGBTQ+ community himself, hopes to maintain an inclusive practice that considers the impact of systemic oppression of marginalized groups.
Approach to counseling / Theoretical Orientation: At heart, Blake works from a person-centered perspective by viewing each student as capable of growth when guided with empathy, unconditional positive regard, and genuineness. He believes that clients are the experts of their experiences and views the stories they share as being true and valid. Blake also holds interest in using self-compassion, post-modern, emotion-focused, and acceptance and commitment techniques when supporting students.
Personal Interests: In his free time, Blake enjoys spending time with his boyfriend and friends, going for walks and hikes, playing with his cats, listening to the Harry Potter and the Sacred Text podcast, Nintendo video games, catching up on tv shows, and reading.
The Counseling Center offers after-hours emergency coverage for urgent mental health concerns such as suicidal thoughts, sexual assault, and other trauma. Call the Counseling Center at 828-262-3180 and select the option to speak with the counselor on-call.
During operating hours, students in crisis can walk in any time.