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Meet Our Staff

Counseling Center Staff

Ginger Villareal Armas, Ph.D. (She/her/hers)

Sexual Assault Services Coordinator

Dr. Armas earned her B.A. in Art History (Manhattanville College with a semester in Oxford, England), M.A. in General Psychology (New York University), and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology (Nova Southeastern University). After completing the APA-accredited California Psychology Internship Program at Fresno City College, she was a Post-Doctoral Resident at UC San Diego Counseling and Psychological Services. Prior to joining UMBC, Dr. Armas was a Staff Psychotherapist at Cornell University. Integrating evidence-based practices to build upon preexisting strengths, her therapeutic approach has been described as compassionate and nonjudgmental. Her special interests include anxiety (generalized, illness & social); stress management; grief/bereavement; trauma; dissociative disorders; work sustainability; activist burnout; social mindfulness/justice; concerns related to LGBTQ+ identities (including asexuality and polyamory); academic/career concerns; ADHD; perfectionism; existential/religious/spiritual concerns; impostor syndrome; multicultural/diversity issues; concerns related to immigration; interpersonal effectiveness; sexual health; well-being; creativity; peak performance; therapeutic writing; self-compassion; and mindfulness.

Marie Bailey-Kloch, Ph.D., LCSW-C (She/her/hers)

Clinical Case Manager/Referral Coordinator

Dr. Bailey-Kloch is a licensed social worker who earned her doctoral degree in Social Work from the University of Maryland at Baltimore. She has been working as a social worker and therapist for over 25 years, most recently as a therapist in private practice, before joining the staff of the UMBC Counseling Center in 2019. Dr. Bailey-Kloch has experience working as a clinician in child welfare, inpatient and outpatient behavioral health and crisis management.  In addition to her clinical skills, Dr. Bailey-Kloch has extensive experience conducting qualitative and mixed methods research in areas of criminal justice, substance use and gambling with vulnerable populations. Dr. Bailey-Kloch employs a systems approach in therapy that includes examining personal, social and environmental factors affecting impediment to client’s goals. Her special interests include substance use disorders, anxiety-related disorders, depression, gender issues, supervision and training of the next generation of social workers.

Alayna Berkowitz, Ph.D. (She/her/hers)

Assistant Director of Outreach and Mental Health Promotion

Dr. Berkowitz is a licensed psychologist in the District of Columbia who graduated from Lehigh University with a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology. She completed her doctoral internship at the University of Maryland College Park Counseling Center and a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Delaware CCSD.  Dr. Berkowitz was a staff psychologist and group coordinator at the American University Counseling Center prior to joining UMBC.  Dr. Berkowitz is an integrative clinician utilizing feminist/multicultural, psychodynamic, cognitive behavioral, and interpersonal therapies. Her special interests including outreach/mental health promotion, relationship concerns, college adjustment, group therapy, and supervision/training.

Sam L. Chan, MSW, LCSW-C (He/him/his)

Clinical Case Manager/Referral Coordinator

Sam is a clinical social worker who originally moved to Baltimore to earn a Master’s in Social Work degree from The University of Maryland, Baltimore. He has been dedicated to working in Baltimore City and County ever since. Sam’s clinical interests include helping those with mood and trauma backgrounds, substance use histories, spiritual concerns, men’s issues, and struggles with identity development. Sam has a particular interest in helping students reach their highest potential, and have previously worked for the student counseling centers at UMB and MICA and in the Baltimore City Public School system. Sam’s theoretical approach is psychodynamic and humanistic, and is a strong believer that personal growth continues and strengthens outside of the therapy room. Sam also has a STEM background; he worked as an automotive engineer over ten years ago before deciding to switch careers to the mental health professions.

Bruce Herman, Ph.D. (He/him/his)

Director of Health & Counseling

Dr. Herman graduated from Cornell University with a degree in Industrial and Labor Relations. He obtained his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana. He has been working in Higher Education for over 30 years and has worked extensively in the areas of mental health and health promotion. He came to UMBC in July 2012. Before UMBC he worked at Towson University Counseling Center from 1999-2012. Prior to that, from 1991-1998 Dr. Herman worked as a Psychologist at Loyola College in Maryland. Dr. Herman has also taught in the Psychology and/or Education Departments at Towson University, Loyola College and University of Illinois. He is interested in campus health promotion and in providing services that reach, serve and support the success and health of UMBC’s diverse population.

Whitney Hobson, Psy.D. (She/her/hers)

Staff Psychologist/Multicultural Coordinator

Dr. Hobson is a licensed psychologist who graduated from the American School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University, Washington, D.C. with a PsyD in Clinical Psychology. Dr. Hobson completed her doctoral internship at Basics Group Counseling, LLC through the Mid-Atlantic Internship Consortium providing individual and family therapy as well as psychological assessments to individuals of varied ages. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship followed by a position as a Behavioral Health Consultant at Chase Brexton Health Care in Randallstown, MD. During her time there Dr. Hobson spent two years providing clinical and outreach services in the form of individual, family, and couples therapy to both general and pediatric populations, serving individuals from diverse and varied backgrounds and within the LGBTQ community. Dr. Hobson uses an integrative approach to therapy and conceptualization primarily derived from cognitive-behavioral and relational-culture theories. Dr. Hobson’s interest and clinical experience include the treatment of anxiety and depression, grief and loss and its broader application to adjustment and life transitions, establishment of identity and empowerment, interpersonal effectiveness, and culturally/socially focused issues.

Soonhee Lee, Ph.D. (She/her/hers)

Assistant Director/Training Director

Dr. Lee is a licensed psychologist who graduated from the University of Rochester with a Ph.D. in clinical psychology. She completed her doctoral internship and postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Rochester Counseling Center and then worked at the University of Delaware as a staff psychologist before joining UMBC. Dr. Lee uses a mindfulness-based integrative approach in therapy that includes modern brief psychodynamic therapy, interpersonal psychotherapy, emotionally-focused therapy, and dialectical behavior therapy. Her special interests include couples/relationship issues, immigration and acculturation, anxiety-spectrum disorders, life transition, grief, group dynamics, and supervision/training.

Kris Sagun, Ph.D. (She/her/hers)

Associate Director/Coordinator of Clinical Services

Dr. Sagun is a licensed psychologist who graduated from Temple University with a Ph.D. in counseling psychology. She completed her doctoral internship at the Johns Hopkins University Counseling Center and a post-doctoral fellowship at the Center for Eating Disorders at Sheppard Pratt Hospital in Baltimore. In addition to her training and professional experiences in college counseling at a variety of institutions, Dr. Sagun has experience working in other college student affairs settings including residential life, disability services, and health promotion. Dr. Sagun maintains an integrative orientation towards therapy that utilizes humanistic, interpersonal, cognitive-behavioral approaches. Her special interests include college adjustment, anxiety, relationship issues, LGBTQ identity development, working with student athletes, supervision training, and clinical service administration.

Kevin Tabb, Ph.D. (He/him/his)

Staff Psychologist/Groups Coordinator

Dr. Tabb earned his Ph.D. in clinical psychology with an emphasis in LGBTQ psychology from the Pacific Graduate School of Psychology at Palo Alto University.  He completed his doctoral internship at the Butler University Consortium in Indianapolis, IN where his training was split between a local community mental health center and the Butler University counseling center.  After internship, he took a staff psychologist position at Clemson University Counseling and Psychological Services and he remained there after completing his post-doctoral training.  Dr. Tabb’s primary theoretical orientation is person-centered, but he also integrates existential, cognitive-behavioral, and interpersonal approaches into his work.  He has a passion for working with young adults as well as for group therapy.  His other professional interests include mood disorders, existential and identity concerns, perfectionism, psychosis, men’s issues, and working with LGBTQ populations.

Chinedu Varma, M.D., M.P.H. (She/her/hers)

Consulting Psychiatrist

Dr. Varma is an undergraduate alumnae of UMBC, where she was a Meyerhoff Scholar.  She was an Interdisciplinary Studies major, with a focus on Biomedical Ethics.   She graduated from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and earned her Master’s of Public Health degree, with a focus on Epidemiology and Biomedical Statistics from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.  She completed a General Psychiatry residency at the Johns Hopkins Hospital and a Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship at New York-Presbyterian University Hospital of Columbia and Cornell.  Dr. Varma joined the UMBC Counseling Center in 2016 and provides psychiatric consultation and medication management.  She is also a consulting psychiatrist at the Counseling Center at Bowie State University.

Counseling Center Trainees

Doctoral Interns

Jen Martinez, M.A. (They/them/theirs)

Jennifer Martinez is a doctoral candidate in Clinical Psychology at the University of Massachusetts-Boston. Jen’s previous clinical experiences have included working at a community mental health clinic, the UMass Boston counseling center, and doing outreach and consultation with UMass Boston’s students and faculty. Jen is passionate about social justice issues and strives to create a space that is affirming and empowering for clients, particularly for those from marginalized backgrounds. Jen works with a cognitive-behavior frame, which includes mindfulness- and acceptance-based approaches, with a strong multicultural emphasis. Their clinical interests include multicultural/diversity issues, LGBTQ identity development, racism-based discrimination and trauma, anxiety, and depression. They have also worked closely with and have an understanding of the unique needs faced by first-generation college students, undocumented/DACAmented/TPS students, and students from working/working-poor SES backgrounds.

Renae C. Mitchell, M.A. (She/her/hers)

Renae Mitchell is a doctoral candidate in Clinical Psychology at the University of Kansas and a Baltimore native. She received her MA in Clinical Psychology from Towson University and has trained in a variety of clinical settings in both Maryland and Kansas, including a college/community psychological clinic, a psychiatric state hospital, a sex offender treatment program, and a VA Medical Center. Her approach to therapy is client-centered and evidence-based, integrating psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, and mindfulness-based approaches. Her clinical interests include anxiety and trauma disorders, stress management, relationship concerns, and human sexuality. Renae has presented at national conferences and published in peer-reviewed academic journals on the topics of sexual violence prevention and LGBT+ identity/experience. She also has experience teaching undergraduate psychology courses at Towson University and the University of Kansas.

Ethan Sunny Swift, M.A. (He/him/they/them)

Ethan Swift is a doctoral candidate in Clinical Psychology at the Chicago School of Professional Chicago – Chicago Campus. Ethan grew up in the Chicagoland suburbs, but has lived in the city of Chicago for over ten years. Ethan also completed his Master’s degree while living in Chicago. Ethanhas previous experience as an extern at Governor’s State University in University Park, IL, where he provided individual, group, and relationship therapy to students and lead initiatives to improve campus life for queer and transgender students. He also completed an externship at The Chicago Women’s Health Center in Chicago, IL. Ethan is integrative in his incorporating of methods, however, primarily works from humanistic, psychodynamic, and relational perspectives, emphasizing feminist models of care.  Ethan’s areas of interests and experience surround issues of gender and sexual identity, bipolar disorder, attachment, and culture.


Psychology Externs

Ishita Arora, M.A. (She/her/hers)

Ishita is a fourth year graduate student and doctoral candidate at UMBC’s Clinical-Community Psychology program. She earned an MA in Counseling Psychology and MA in Liberal Studies from Amity University and Ashoka University, India, respectively. She has received clinical training and has worked as a counselor in multidisciplinary individual and group therapy settings in India and the U.S., such as Institute of Mental Health, Neuro, and Allied sciences, New Delhi, Save the Children, India, Salaam Baalak Non-Profit Organization, New Delhi, UMBC Training Clinic, and HopeWorks Domestic Violence Center, Columbia, Maryland. Based in the scientist-practitioner approach, Ishita’s therapeutic orientation incorporates multi-cultural and holistic mental healthcare access by employing evidence-based cognitive behavioral therapy, mindfulness-based dialectical behavioral therapy, interpersonal psychotherapy, feminist therapy, existential therapy, and psychodynamic therapy. Ishita’s research and clinical interests include incorporating a strengths and resilience based model in working with survivors of trauma, LGBTQIA+ young adults, international and immigrant population, and people presenting with anxiety and mood disorders.

Elizabeth Bagioni, M.S. (She/her/hers)

Elizabeth is a doctoral candidate in Clinical Psychology at the George Washington University. She has trained in several clinical settings, including a clinic focused on long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy, and a private school focusing on educational assessments. She is excited to be exploring several approaches to therapy at the UMBC Counseling Center, including CBT, group therapy, and integrative methods. Her clinical interests are trauma recovery, disability and equity issues, and anxiety and attentional challenges.

Social Work Intern

Helen Yining Ding, B.A. (She/her/hers)

I am a second year clinical MSW student at University of Maryland Baltimore, concentrating in behavioral health. I love learning different therapy approaches,  including mindfulness, narrative therapy, and solution focused brief therapy. I am looking forward to working with the diverse student body at UMBC.

Administrative Staff

Jill Earl (She/her/hers)

Office Clerk II

Jill started working at the Counseling Center in 2018. She provides general office support to the Counseling Center along with greeting and scheduling students for appointments.


Dotty Fefel (She/her/hers)

Administrative Assistant II

Dotty started work at the Counseling Center in 2017. She provides general office support to the Counseling Center along with greeting and scheduling students for appointments.


Je’Nae C. Parker, M.S. (She/her/hers)

Office Manager

Je’Nae joined UMBC in October of 2017. She is a graduate of the University of Baltimore and Coppin State University’s collaborative program with a Master’s in Human Services Administration. She supervises the administrative staff at the Counseling Center, providing support to the clinical staff. Her experience includes supervising call center staff, insurance, billing and front desk operations.