Counseling and Psychological Services

About Counseling and Psychological Services

Emerson College Counseling and Psychological Services (ECAPS) is an integral part of the Emerson community, providing services to both undergraduate and graduate students. It is accredited by the International Association of Counseling Services.

Senior staff members consult regularly with the Residence Life staff and other College personnel regarding their questions and concerns about student behavior. Senior staff and trainees also provide outreach programming for students and staff members on a variety of topics (e.g., stress management, relationships, and computer addiction).We offer brief individual psychotherapy, crisis intervention, and the option of group therapy. When appropriate, we also provide referrals to outside agencies/clinicians for longer term therapy and/or psychiatric evaluation.

Mission and Philosophy

Our primary goal is to help students fully develop their intellectual, emotional, and social potential. We believe that your psychological development is affected by your personal history and the larger social, cultural, and physical environment. Our work is focused on helping students prevent, reduce, or eliminate emotional and psychological barriers that may interfere with this developmental process. It is a sign of strength to explore personal concerns and feelings in therapy, and we regard your concerns with respect, curiosity, and interest.

Our Services

At ECAPS, we provide brief psychotherapy for students as individuals, couples, and groups, as well as consultation to faculty, staff, and concerned friends and family as needed. We provide training and outreach to the campus community to contribute to the creation of a healthy campus environment in which students can thrive. ECAPS is committed to creating and maintaining an open and accepting environment in which all clients feel welcomed and valued.

Confidentiality

At ECAPS, we care about protecting your privacy, and believe that counseling is most effective when students feel comfortable speaking openly with their counselor. Under ordinary circumstances, no one outside ECAPS is given any information—even the fact that you have been seen here—without your written consent. There are a few exceptions to confidentiality that your counselor will discuss with you in your initial session. These typically refer to situations in which safety is a concern.

Counseling and Psychological Services Staff

All staff members are committed to using a developmental framework that validates the academic, social, emotional, behavioral, cognitive, and spiritual aspects of undergraduate and graduate students.

Elise Z. Harrison, Ph.D, LMFT

Elise HarrisonElise Harrison is the Director of Counseling and Psychological Services. Elise is a licensed Marriage & Family Therapist. She received her MS and 6th year degree in Marriage & Family Therapy from Southern Connecticut State University. In addition, she earned a Ph.D in Educational Leadership from University of Connecticut. Elise has 19 years of experience in college counseling. Elise works from a Strength-based approach incorporating mindfulness and Brief Solution-focused therapy. She has worked extensively with eating disorders, substance issues, relationship issues, grief, and adjustment to life transitions. Elise majored in Anthropology in undergraduate school and continues her love of different cultures, particularly world music and folk dance. She loves spending time growing food and flowers and getting out onto the water kayaking and spending time with family.

Patricia Challan, PsyD

Patricia ChallanDr. Patricia A. Challan is the Associate Director of ECAPS. She also serves as the Director of Clinical Training. Patty received her PsyD in Clinical Psychology from the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology and her MA in Clinical Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Patty has over 17 years of experience in college counseling, as well as specific training in child and adolescent psychotherapy. Patty’s clinical interests include mindfulness, expressive art therapy, play therapy, and the personal and professional development of mental health trainees. Patty has been at Emerson since October 2003, and she is inspired by the creativity, passion, and talent of Emerson students. A native of New Jersey, Patty is a writer who enjoys reading, entertaining her energetic cats, being at the ocean as much as possible, and listening to music.

Kerri Murphy, PhD

Kerri MurphyDr. Kerri Murphy is a staff psychologist at Counseling and Psychological Services. She earned a master’s degree in mental health counseling and a PhD in counseling psychology from Boston College. Kerri has worked in various college mental health settings and acute residential and partial hospital programs, where she has enjoyed combining relational approaches with more mindfulness and behaviorally based therapies. Kerri also enjoys teaching and is an adjunct faculty member at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and Boston College. Her research focuses on the intersections of student engagement, career development, and mental health of underserved adolescents and young adults. In her spare time, she loves to spend time with family and friends, who bravely let her try out new recipes on them; to spend time outdooors hiking and swimming; and traveling to visit family living overseas.

Annelle Kallman, LICSW

Annelle Kallman, LICSW, joined the ECAPS team in September 2013. She received her MSW and Certificate in Substance Abuse Counseling from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Annelle has worked with young adults in both mental health and substance abuse services since 2009, first at the UNC College Counseling Center and most recently at MGH in an outpatient dual diagnosis treatment program. Annelle integrates mindfulness and relational approaches into her work, helping clients enhance their internal motivations for change. Her clinical interests include harm reduction approaches to substance use, anxiety and stress management, and working with couples.  In her spare time, Annelle loves exploring Maine’s beaches and wildlife, cooking and eating Italian food in the North End, running with her dog, and traveling to interesting places in Asia and Africa.

Stacy Taylor, MD

Dr. Stacy Taylor is a consulting psychiatrist at Counseling and Psychological Services. She earned her B.A. at Cornell University and her MD at University of Massachusetts Worcester. She began her residency at Harvard Longwood in Boston and completed it at University of Maryland. She has an interest in treating mood and anxiety disorders and working to optimize the use of medication in conjunction with psychotherapy as indicated. She has thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the gifted students of Emerson and is invested in working with students to find workable treatment plans. In her free time, Stacy enjoys spending time with family and friends. She also enjoys yoga, running and was honored to experience and complete the Boston Marathon in 2014.

Devin Kanabay, PsyD

Devin Kanabay, PsyD is a staff psychologist at ECAPS. He is a graduate of the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology where he earned his doctorate in Clinical Psychology. Devin has 4 years of experience working with college students and was previously an intern at Emerson during his graduate training. Devin’s clinical interests include relational as well as cognitive behavioral therapy. He is also interested in training and supervising interns in the mental health field. In his spare time, he enjoys cooking and exploring Boston’s culinary delights, as well as reading the work of Cormac McCarthy.

Teresa Spillane, PsyD

Teresa Spillane, PsyD is a staff psychologist at ECAPS. She is a graduate of Williams College and the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology. She begins her first year at Emerson after spending a number of years in the college counseling centers at Brandeis University, Simmons College, and UMass Dartmouth. When not enjoying her time with college students, Teresa's other professional interests include the psychological treatment of physicians, high-risk pregnancy, and psychoanalysis. She is also interested in the way the arts can play a role in the traditional "talking" therapies. When not caring for her teenage triplets, Teresa is a total foodie and has a passion for good design.

Laura Suminski, LADC-I

Laura Suminski, LADC-I, joined the ECAPS team in September 2014. Laura received her education at the University of Wisconsin – Madison (BA), and the University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh (MSE) in Professional Counseling with a Clinical Counseling emphasis. Since 2010, Laura has provided mental health and substance abuse counseling services to teenagers, young adults and groups; most recently at Connections Counseling, LLC – Madison, WI. In 2011, Laura helped to pilot and implement the “CHOICES About Alcohol” and “CASICS” programs with the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Her clinical interests include: harm-reduction and prevention services, anxiety disorders, trauma, and women’s issues. Laura integrates a strengths and resilience-based approach as she helps others work toward his/her goals for change. After a recent move from WI to MA, Laura enjoys exploring what Boston has to offer, spending time at the various beaches in New England, hiking different parks with her golden retriever, and attending various live music shows in the area.

Jonathan Chester, MA

Jonathan Chester, MA, who prefers to be called “Chester,” is a Graduate Intern at ECAPS. He received his MA in Clinical Psychology and is currently in the fourth year of his PsyD program at the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology. He graduated with a BA from the University of Rochester with double majors in Chemistry and Global Studies in Sustainability, as well as a certificate in classical Hinduism and Sanskrit language. Chester has worked in various settings in recent years, including in-home therapy with elders who were abused/neglected, assessment and individual therapy with adolescents in residential treatment, and intensive outpatient treatment with families who have adolescents with eating disorders. Chester’s clinical interests include play therapy, narrative therapy, and other approaches that incorporate principles of social justice. In his free time he enjoys bicycling, rock climbing, and singing with a Cambridge-based a cappella group.

Craig DiGiovanni

Craig DiGiovanni is a fourth-year counseling psychology doctoral student at Boston College and returning graduate intern from 2012-2013. He earned his BS in chemical engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute and his MA in mental health counseling at Boston College. Craig’s previous clinical experiences include LGBTQ youth and college students. Craig’s approach to therapy is integrative, drawing primarily upon psychodynamic, relational, and family systems approaches to understand mental health concerns. His clinical interests include overcoming anxiety within the college context, developing healthy relationships, understanding challenging family dynamics, and young adult sexual identity development. In his spare time, Craig enjoys swimming, cooking with friends, traveling, and tracing his family history.

Erin McFadden

Erin McFadden is a Graduate Intern in her fourth year in the PsyD program at Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology. She received her BA in Psychology from Clark University, and her MA in Professional Psychology from MSPP. Erin has worked with various groups, including children, adolescents and adults. Most recently, Erin worked in a community mental health setting, a therapeutic high school and with veterans returning from deployment. Erin supports clients in developing skills that enable them to experience their time at Emerson College as fully and freely as they wish. Her areas of clinical interest include working with clients on relationship issues, human sexuality, anxiety, stress-management, self-esteem, family systems and transitional issues. Outside of the office, Erin enjoys spending time with her friends and family, trying new restaurants, watching stand-up comedy, and indulging in as much reality TV as possible.

Sarah Rudov

Sarah Rudov is a social work intern at Counseling and Psychological Services. She earned a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology from Teachers College - Columbia University and is currently pursuing a dual degree MSW/MPH from Boston University. Sarah’s previous work includes mental health services for adolescents with high-risk behavioral and emotional concerns in different inpatient settings. Some of Sarah’s clinical interests include anxiety and mood, life transitions, and relationships. In her spare time, Sarah enjoys walking around Boston, trying new foods, anything comedy-related, and playing with her dog.

Onedia Asiedu

Onedia Asiedu is the Clinical Coordinator for ECAPS and brings to the department nearly 20 years of combined administrative experience in hospital and university settings. She has a Bachelor of General Studies Degree with a Concentration in Counseling and Social Work from University of New Orleans and is currently pursuing her Masters in Marriage and Family Therapy at Eastern Nazarene College. Over the years Onedia has developed her talents in many ways and has obtained a number of certificates, one of which is a certificate in Mediation and Conflict Resolution. She has a special interest in grief and loss and hopes to one day become a Grief Counselor. Apart from her work, Onedia thoroughly enjoys spending time with her beautiful family and her adorable housecat, Fiona.