About Student Counseling & Psychological Services Staff

SCPS staff clinicians are qualified, experienced, and skilled professionals who are specialists in their respective fields. Please contact SCPS to make an appointment for a meeting with one of our staff.
Dr. Doug Hankes Director of Auburn Student Counseling Services

Doug Hankes

Ph.D., Director, Licensed Psychologist

Doug completed his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of North Texas in 1996. He is a licensed psychologist in Alabama and Tennessee. Doug returned to his alma mater in 1998 after working at the University of Tennessee. He holds graduate faculty status in the Department of Psychology, the Department of Kinesiology, and the Department of Special Education, Rehabilitation, and Counseling. Doug describes his therapy approach as mindfully eclectic and fosters a collaborative relationship with clients to promote change. He has been actively involved at the national level in sport and exercise psychology and has served on the Executive Boards of the American Psychological Association (APA) Division 47 Society for Sport, Exercise and Performance Psychology and the Association for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP). Doug is currently the President of Division 47. He is an AASP Fellow and CMPC and is listed on the 2016-2020 United States Olympic Committee Sport Psychology Registry. When he’s not at work, you can find him hiking the Appalachian Trail.

Dr. Joleen Cooper-Bhatia

Alyssa Clements-Hickman

M.S., Doctoral Psychology Intern

Alyssa is a doctoral psychology intern from the University of Kentucky (UK), where she is earning her Ph.D. in counseling psychology. Prior to enrolling at UK, she earned a master’s degree in clinical psychology from Augusta University and worked at a college counseling center. During her training at UK, she was able to work in a variety of clinical settings, including the Lexington VA, Eastern State Hospital, and a private practice specializing in LGBTQ+ issues. Alyssa’s professional interests include relationship issues, developmental issues, depression, and anxiety. She also conducts research on psychotherapy process and outcome and training/supervision. Her approach to treatment is integrative, incorporating interpersonal and cognitive-behavioral techniques.

Dr. Joleen Cooper-Bhatia

Joeleen Cooper-Bhatia

Ph.D., Group and Practicum Coordinator, Licensed Psychologist

Joeleen completed her doctoral degree in Counseling Psychology at the University at Albany, SUNY in Albany, NY. She completed her pre-doctoral internship at Virginia Tech’s Thomas E. Cook Counseling Center and also has experience working with college students at the University at Albany and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Joeleen’s professional interests include intervention and outreach to diverse populations, training/supervision, psychological assessment, group therapy, and relationship issues. Her approach to treatment is integrative, incorporating interpersonal and cognitive-behavioral techniques.

Kellie Jenkins Administrative Assistant

Aja Davis

M.A., Doctoral Psychology Intern

Aja is in the process of completing her doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology (D.C. Campus). She has experience working in private practice, high school, and college/university settings. In these settings, Aja has had the opportunity to work with clients that vary in presenting issues, ages, and backgrounds. Although Aja mainly works from a Cognitive-Behavioral orientation, she also incorporates relational and multicultural theory into her work with students. In her free time, Aja likes to try do-it-yourself projects, listen to music, and spend time with her family.

Kellie Jenkins Administrative Assistant

Emily Hancock

Psy.D., Licensed Psychologist

Emily completed her Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. She has previously provided counseling in a hospital setting and community mental health center before joining SCPS. Her areas of professional interest include working with survivors of trauma, relationship issues, substance abuse, crisis intervention, psychological assessment, group counseling, social justice and advocacy, and graduate student training. Emily uses an integrative approach utilizing psychodynamic, interpersonal, and cognitive-behavioral treatment modalities to meet the unique needs of each student. Outside of work, Emily enjoys college football season, attempting new recipes, and traveling.

Kellie Jenkins Administrative Assistant

Alisia Hansell

LCSW, Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Alisia is a native of Auburn, Alabama. She completed her Master of Social Work degree from the University of Southern Mississippi. She is licensed in Mississippi and Alabama, and has more than 10 years of experience in community mental health and inpatient settings. Alisia gained an interest in working with college students as a mentor and Graduate Advisor for her sorority. She has a passion for promoting mental health and wellness, and prefers the idea of a holistic care approach in treatment. She likes to “think outside of the box” while collaborating with the student to identify solutions that best meet their needs. Her clinical and professional interests include multiculturalism, trauma, relationship issues, substance abuse, and support for young adults and families experiencing mental health issues for the first time. In her free time, Alisia enjoys traveling, DIY projects, and spending time with family and friends. Alisia is excited to return back home and be a part of the Auburn family.

Kellie Jenkins Administrative Assistant

Adria Hickson

Ed.S., Doctoral Psychology Intern

Adria Hickson is a doctoral psychology intern from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology, where she is earning her PsyD. Originally from Florida, Adria obtained her B.A. in Psychology from Spelman College and her master’s and specialist’s degrees from Georgia State University. Adria enjoys working with individuals in various stages of development. She has a background as a School Psychologist working with children and families in the public school system, and has experience working with young and older adults in community mental health and private practice settings. Adria uses a Cognitive-Behavioral approach with undertones of Humanistic theory to collaboratively work with clients and their various needs. In addition to counseling, Adria enjoys spending time with family and friends, pursuing musical interests, and trying new cuisine and restaurants.

Kellie Jenkins Administrative Assistant

Alex Hughes

Ph.D., Senior Staff Clinician

Alex obtained his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California, where he also completed a Master’s degree in Theology. He completed his internship and postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Idaho. Alex’s clinical interests include existential issues, religion/spirituality, identity development, relational concerns, and anxiety/panic. He uses an integrative approach in therapy, drawing primarily from Humanistic-Existential Therapy, Narrative Therapy, Interpersonal-Process Therapy, and Cognitive-Behavior Therapy. He is a widely published poet and dabbles in too many other artistic activities to be very good at them.

Kellie Jenkins

Administrative Assistant

Kellie is an Opelika, Alabama native and the administrative assistant for the counseling center. She has extensive knowledge and experience in customer service and administration. Her enthusiasm, commitment, and positivity help create a comfortable environment for those who visit the center as well as for those who call. She also assists the SCPS clinicians with managerial tasks to provide the best quality service to clients. Prior to working at the SCPS, Kellie worked in the healthcare field for 22 years, specializing in geriatrics and mental health. Outside of work, she enjoys cooking, reading and spending time with her family and pets.

Dr. Joleen Cooper-Bhatia

Dustin Johnson

Ph.D., Assistant Director for Outreach and Mental Health Initiatives, Licensed Psychologist

Dustin completed his doctoral degree in Counseling Psychology from the University of North Texas and arrived at SCPS in 2011. He emphasizes creating strong, genuine, collaborative, and open working relationships with his clients, helping them to develop, address, and maintain progress toward their personal goals. With a performance psychology background, Dustin enjoys helping clients develop practical strategies to meet life challenges and perform at their very best. As the Assistant Director for Outreach, Dustin helps to lead the A Sound Mind initiative, Auburn’s collaborative, campus-wide mental health awareness and prevention strategy. He is also a proud co-advisor to Active Minds, Auburn’s student organization for mental health.  A native New Orleanian, Dustin enjoys his fair share of gumbos, king cakes, jazz music, and especially, his beloved New Orleans Saints.

Priscilla Little

Office Manager

Priscilla is the Office Manager for the counseling center. She is responsible for the day-to-day operation and management of non-clinical personnel. She oversees the business, financial, and human resource aspects of the office. Previously she has worked as a paralegal, which provided her with training and knowledge in the area of HIPPA and patient privacy. Originally from Brandon, MS, Priscilla has lived in Birmingham, AL, Memphis, TN, Austin, TX and Louisville, KY before moving to Auburn in 2007. Outside of work, she enjoys outdoor activities such as cycling, kayaking, concerts, and tailgating.

Priscilla Little

Austin Luker

M.D., Psychiatrist

Dr. Luker recently joined East Alabama Psychiatric Services, and is thrilled to be an Auburn University affiliate at the Student Counseling & Psychological Services office. Dr. Luker earned his undergraduate and medical degrees from UAB, where he also completed his general psychiatry residency and child and adolescent psychiatry fellowship. Dr. Luker is a proud native of Clay County, Alabama, and is excited to be practicing psychiatry in the East Alabama area. He has known he wanted to be a psychiatrist since he was a teenager, and has clinical interest in ADHD, depressive disorders, bipolar disorders, PTSD, and psychotic disorders.  As a child and adult psychiatrist, he has an interest in development across the lifespan and feels privileged to be working with Auburn University students at this unique and exciting stage of their lives. In his spare time, Dr. Luker enjoys running, DIY projects, playing the mandolin and guitar, Auburn athletics, and spending time with his family.

Priscilla Little

Nathan Maddox

LMSW, Senior Staff Clinician

Nathan earned his Master of Social Work degree from Savanah State University and is a Licensed Social Worker. He gained experience working with college students through his master’s internship at Savannah College of Art and Design, and he has professional experience providing clinical services to adolescents and young adults in hospital and community-based settings. His clinical and professional interests include trauma recovery, developmental issues, identity formation, emotional disturbance, anxiety, and the relationship between creativity and psychological well-being. Nathan’s clinical approach is eclectic and informed by psychodynamic, existential, and attachment-oriented theoretical traditions. Nathan thinks of counseling as a co-creative process of working through life challenges, and he sees his role as assisting students with developing self-awareness, achieving their goals, and forming more authentic and creative ways of living. In his free time, he enjoys reading, writing, exercising, and all things Americana music.

Robin Marshall LPN

Carolyn Miller

LCSW, Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Carolyn completed her Master of Science in Social Work from Columbia University in New York City. She gained experience working with students in a college counseling center through her master’s internship at Hunter College. Carolyn is now licensed in the state of Alabama, where she has conducted therapy in community mental health and hospital settings. Her clinical interests include anxiety, grief and loss, relationship issues, developmental concerns, trauma, and social justice. Her approach to counseling centers on an empathetic working relationship and draws from systemic, psychodynamic, interpersonal, and cognitive-behavioral modalities. Outside of work, Carolyn enjoys spending time with her family, friends, and dog in the great outdoors.

Robin Marshall LPN

Jan Miller

Ph.D., Eating Concerns Treatment Team Coordinator, Licensed Psychologist

Jan earned her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from West Virginia University in 2013. She has worked in college counseling centers, provided in-home intensive therapy to children in foster care, and in a private practice setting. Her clinical and professional interests include anxiety, depression, trauma, shame, LGBTQ+ issues, eating and body image concerns, vocational issues, substance abuse, and training/supervision of psychologists; however, she is trained as a generalist and has experience with a wide variety of presenting issues. Jan uses an integrated clinical approach, specifically drawing from cognitive-behavioral, humanistic, mindfulness, and feminist perspectives. Students can expect a collaborative, safe space for all who enter her plant filled office as she works with them to make changes based on their own strengths and agency. Jan is also the coordinator of AU’s multidisciplinary Eating Concerns Treatment Team (ECTT).

Dr. Jan Miller

Dr. Moose

TDI Certified & CGC (AKC Canine Good Citizen)

Moose is an 12-year-old yellow Labrador Retriever. He was trained by Auburn University Canine Performance Sciences as an explosive detection dog. During his time at Canine Performance Sciences, Moose worked on a Department of Justice research project studying the effects of nutrition on olfaction detection, and on a Department of Defense project. Moose is one of the only two dogs in the world who has been shown to be able to detect a live virus. In collaboration with Student Counseling & Psychological Services, Canine Performance Sciences trained him to be a therapy dog and donated him to SCPS so that he can work with Auburn students. Moose has passed his AKC Canine Good Citizen test and his Therapy Dogs International evaluation and is now a registered therapy dog. At SCPS, Moose works with students in individual and group counseling sessions. Additionally, Moose is involved in outreach events on campus. Moose’s therapeutic approach includes mindfulness, warmth, and acceptance without judgment.

Dr. Sarah Halawani Montes

Dr. Nessie

Trained to TDI Certification and AKC Canine Good Citizen Standards

Nessie is a 6-year-old black Labrador Retriever and German Wirehaired Pointer mix. She was trained by Auburn University Canine Performance Sciences as a detection dog. During her time at Canine Performance Sciences, Nessie worked on multiple top secret research projects and was recruited to continue her work at several government agencies. Ultimately, she retired from her detection duties and started her second career as a therapy dog at Student Counseling & Psychological Services. She was trained in collaboration with Canine Performance Services to share her therapy skills with Auburn students. At SCPS, Nessie works alongside her brother from another mother, Moose, with students in individual and group counseling sessions. In addition, Nessie is particularly skilled at outreach events on campus as she has never met a person she doesn’t love. She is truly a mental health ambassador. Nessie’s therapeutic approach includes clinical curiosity, supportive directness, and empathic tail-wagging.

Dr. Sarah Halawani Montes

Christina Newberry

Psy.D., Licensed Psychologist

Christy earned her doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from the Illinois School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University, Chicago. She has experience working with students at university counseling centers including Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and the Indiana University of Pennsylvania where she also received a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology. Christy uses a strengths-based and collaborative approach to meet the unique needs of each student. Consistent with a brief therapy model, she seeks to decrease distress, increase coping strategies, and build on the student’s strengths.

Melissa Sawyer

M.S., Counselor and Support Services Coordinator

Melissa earned her Master of Science in Clinical Counseling from Eastern Illinois University. She has clinical experiences in community mental health, federal adult drug court, an inpatient psychiatric unit, and college counseling centers. Melissa has additional professional experience providing support and crisis intervention to victims/survivors of sexual and intimate partner violence. Her clinical interests include trauma, identity development, relationship issues, social justice, advocacy, and crisis intervention. Melissa practices from an existential framework and embraces psychodynamic, feminist, and relational concepts.

Dr. Sarah Halawani Montes

Sarah Schwartz

Psy.D., Senior Staff Clinician

Sarah completed her Psy.D. in clinical psychology from Marywood University. She recently completed a doctoral internship at SCPS and enjoyed working with Auburn students during the past year. She has also worked with college students at Marywood University. She has worked in private practice with clients of diverse backgrounds and ages. Sarah has found that she is passionate about the college population and the unique experiences students will face. Her clinical and professional interests include body image concerns, anxiety, depression, relationship issues and emotional regulation. Sarah works from an integrative approach, utilizing interpersonal, psychodynamic, emotion-focused and cognitive-behavioral techniques. In her free time, Sarah enjoys spending time with family and friends, DIY projects, watching movies, and swimming.

Christy-Newberry

Brandy Smith

Ph.D., Assistant Director for Training, Licensed Psychologist

Brandy (originally from Olive Branch, MS) completed her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from University of Memphis in 2008. Most recently, she worked with university students at University of Oregon (during her pre-doctoral internship) and then as a permanent staff member at New Mexico State University for almost 3 years. At NMSU Brandy also served as the Diversity Coordinator. Brandy joined SCPS in August 2011. Her clinical interests include developmental and relationship issues; grief and loss; supervision; multiculturalism (including race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, body size, religion, spirituality, age, gender, ability level, socioeconomic status); and social justice and advocacy. She has a strengths-focused approach to counseling that stems from a humanistic/existential perspective with feminist and multicultural components included.

Scott Smith

M.A., Doctoral Psychology Intern

Scott is a doctoral intern who is completing his Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology at Mercer University in Atlanta, Georgia. He earned a Master’s degree in Psychology at the University of West Georgia in Carrollton, Georgia, where he focused on Humanistic Psychology. Scott’s theoretical orientation is integrative, combining a person-centered approach with cognitive-behavioral therapy techniques. With strong interests in health psychology and behavioral health, he often incorporates a biopsychosocial perspective in his clinical work.

Jennifer Smith

M.D., Psychiatrist

Jen Smith is an Auburn University affiliate at the Student Counseling & Psychological Services office. She joins the East Alabama Psychiatric Service team to provide psychiatric services for the Auburn University students on campus. She graduated from University of Alabama School of Medicine in Birmingham, AL in 2011 and completed psychiatry residency training at Virginia Commonwealth University Health System in Richmond, VA in 2015. She worked at a community mental health center before joining East Alabama Psychiatric Services. She was born and raised in the Auburn/Opelika area, is an Auburn football fan, and received her undergraduate degree from Auburn University in 2006. She is excited to be back at Auburn. She hopes to help students get the most out of their time at Auburn and achieve their educational goals by addressing their mental health needs.

Dr. Sarah Halawani Montes

Tracy Thomas

Administrative Assistant

Tracy is an essential part of the Administrative Support team at SCPS. Born and raised in Detroit, MI, she has been a part of the Auburn community for over 20 years. With comprehensive leadership and customer relations skills, she is a valuable asset to the counseling center. Tracy has served the local community both professionally and personally in our local public schools as a parent. Her ability to be a positive role model attracts young people naturally to her for engagement and direction. Outside of work, she appreciates family outings and good eating, while taking joy in being a devoted mother and grandmother.

Kristee Treadwell

Ph.D., Assistant Director for Clinical Services, Licensed Psychologist

Kristee completed her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from West Virginia University in 2006. After completing her degree, Kristee worked as an inpatient psychologist at a community mental health center in Tallahassee, Florida for four years. Kristee joined SCPS in December 2010 and was excited to return to her alma mater since she received her bachelor’s degree from Auburn University. Her clinical interests include working with survivors of trauma, anger management and other presenting concerns relative to the college student population, crisis intervention, group counseling, graduate student training and outreach and instruction within the university and larger community. Kristee approaches her clinical work from an integrative perspective as informed by cognitive- behavioral theory and techniques, interpersonal and other psychodynamic perspectives (e.g., object relations).

Jennifer Smith M.D., Psychiatrist

Mary Catherine Turner

ME.d., College of Veterinary Medicine Embedded Clinician, Licensed Professional Counselor

Mary Catherine graduated from Auburn University with a Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and is a Licensed Professional Counselor. Mary Catherine is the Embedded Counselor at Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine.  Mary Catherine provides individual counseling to veterinary students, residents, interns, and graduate students, as well as providing consultation and resources as needed with faculty and staff.  Mary Catherine’s clinical interests include, transition, anxiety, interpersonal relationships, and compassion fatigue.  Mary Catherine’s goal is to provide veterinary students with a supportive environment to share their concerns and learn to manage them effectively, while simultaneously becoming a healthy and successful veterinarian. Outside of work Mary Catherine enjoys Lake Martin, spending time with family and friends, and finding the best deals at Dirt Cheap and thrift stores.

Charlotte Windom

M.S., Counselor and Support Services Coordinator, Licensed Professional Counselor

Charlotte graduated from Troy University (Troy) in 2007 with a Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology. In 2016, she became a Licensed Professional Counselor. She has 11 years of counseling experience working in Community Mental Health and in Private Practice. She has provided Individual, Family, Couples, Group and Crisis Counseling services to children, adolescents and adults. While working in Community Mental Health, as the Program Coordinator, she created and implemented the Jackson County location’s first Child/Adolescent Day Treatment Program. In 2019, the Program will celebrate 10 years of service to children with Mental Health concerns. Charlotte feels honored to be a part of the SCPS family and is looking forward to working with college students. Outside of work, she enjoys creating pottery, listening to music, and time with family and friends.

Doctoral Practicum Clinicians

2020-2021

Chelsi Battle, M.A.

Christine Dyas, M.A.

Alexis Jones, M.A.

Sharon Kramper, B.A.

Mary Anne Messer, M.S.

Kaylee Short, B.S.

Kareema M. Smith, M.S.

Harley Stenzel, B.S.

Shirnelle Wilks, M.S.Ed.

Doctoral Practicum Clinicians 2017-2018

The Center

Student Counseling & Psychological Services (SCPS) is the primary counseling center for the Auburn University student community to talk through their personal problems and concerns. Your college years are a time of tremendous excitement and potential, but they can also be demanding and stressful. There are academic responsibilities, as well as the tasks of establishing a greater sense of identity, moving toward increased independence, and developing meaningful relationships. SCPS can help you deal with these issues when they become overwhelming.

The Zen Den

The Zen Den offers a variety of stress management resources including biofeedback, a robotic massage chair, light therapy (for Seasonal Affective Disorder), and more. The Zen Den is available to all enrolled Auburn University students. You do not have to be a client at SCPS to utilize the Zen Den. To schedule an orientation session and begin managing your stress in a unique, proactive manner, call Student Counseling and Psychological Services at 334.844.5123.

Group Counseling

Group counseling is one of many forms of treatment offered byStudent Counseling & Psychological Services. Some groups are focused on special themes like stress management, eating concerns, or anger management, while some other are more general and focus on resolving a range of issues, such as depression, anxiety, self-esteem problems, and relationship problems. For many types of problems, group counseling is the treatment of choice. Groups provide the opportunity to observe others solving their problems. Groups provide the advantage of a network of support. Groups are especially helpful in learning to build trust, self-acceptance, intimacy, communication skills, and empathy.

Individual Counseling

Student Counseling & Psychological Services (SCPS) provides short-term individual counseling to currently enrolled Auburn University undergraduate and graduate students. AU students who are academically suspended may be able to access services as part of their comprehensive plan to return to the university. Individual counseling provides an opportunity to explore your concerns on a one-to-one basis within the context of a confidential relationship. Our counseling model attempts to empower you with the resources needed to make positive changes in your life.