About Us

Meet the Staff

The Wellness Center is staffed with credentialed, licensed professionals and graduate student trainees who provide Psychological Services, Medical Services, Prevention Services, and Victim Advocacy. Many of our staff are Certified Safe Zone Allies and are trained in Mental Health First Aid.


Psychological Services Staff

Anita Sahgal, PsyD, Director & Psychologist (she/her/hers)

Anita Sahgal

Dr. Anita Sahgal, a licensed clinical psychologist, has worked at USF St. Petersburg since January 2008. She currently serves as the Director of the Wellness Center and Student Accessibility Services. Dr. Sahgal received her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the Florida Institute of Technology. She has trained and worked with people of all backgrounds and in many different settings throughout her career. Dr. Sahgal approaches her clinical work from an integrative and holistic perspective, emphasizing developmental and cultural dynamics. Her areas of interest include: mind-body wellness, social justice, group psychotherapy, clinical training/supervision, educational outreach/consultation, positive psychology and advocacy/leadership. Additionally, Dr. Sahgal is a certified QPR trainer, a Safe Zone Trainer, and Gallup Strengths coach. She has completed training in USF St. Petersburg Leadership and Management and the NCBI Leadership for Diversity Institute.

Jonathan Mitchell, PhD, Assistant Director, Clinical Services & Psychologist (he/him/his)

Jonathan Mitchell

Dr. Jonathan Mitchell, a licensed clinical psychologist, has worked at USF St. Petersburg since September 2019. A native of the northeast, Dr. Mitchell attended the University of Miami, where he double-majored in Music Education and Psychology. He received his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Central Florida (UCF) in 2016 and completed a predoctoral residency in Health Psychology/Behavioral Medicine at Alpert Medical School of Brown University. He returned to UCF as a dually appointed Visiting Professor in the Department of Psychology and Postdoctoral Fellow in Primary Care Psychology at the College of Medicine before joining the USF community. Dr. Mitchell works from an integrative cognitive-behavioral orientation and his areas of interest include, primary care behavioral health, motivational interviewing, self-management support, clinical training/supervision, values-oriented interventions and multiple health behavior change.

Suzanne Stambaugh, PhD, Psychologist (she/her/hers)

Suzanne Stambaugh

Dr. Suzanne Stambaugh, a licensed psychologist, earned her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology at the University of Tennessee. Dr. Stambaugh is a native of St. Petersburg, and she joined the USF St. Petersburg Wellness Center in 2014 after working as a Staff Psychologist at Eckerd College Counseling Services. She completed her predoctoral internship at the University of Illinois at Chicago Counseling Center and her postdoctoral fellowship in the Multidisciplinary Eating Recovery Intensive Treatment (MERIT) Program at Insight Behavioral Health Centers in Chicago, Illinois. Her interests include interpersonal process psychotherapy, narcissistic abuse recovery, family and relationship concerns, trauma recovery, body image wellness, and training and supervision. Dr. Stambaugh works from an integrative and interpersonal theoretical orientation, incorporating feminist and mindfulness-informed approaches.

Karen Seales, LCSW, Licensed Clinical Social Worker (she/her/hers)

Rocky the Bull

Karen Seales is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has worked at USF St. Petersburg since September 2019. Since graduating from New York University’s School of Social Work, she has worked in various settings including healthcare, higher education and mental health. Karen has training in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and holds a Post Master’s Diploma in Social Work Supervision and Training. She has experience supervising social work and mental health graduate student interns. Her interests include peer mentorship, trauma recovery, advocacy and empowerment, mind-body wellness and multicultural awareness. She is most connected to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Trauma Focused CBT, Motivational Interviewing and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy techniques.

Matilde Torallas Huerta, MA, Practicum Therapist (she/her/hers)

Matilde Huerta

Matilde Torallas Huerta, MA, is a Clinical Psychology doctoral practicum student at the Florida School of Professional Psychology at National Louis University, Tampa. She holds an MA in Clinical Psychology from National Louis University, an MA in Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) from Argosy University, and an MA in Psychology from Sonoma State University. Her MFT practicum took place in St. Joseph's Behavioral Health in Tampa in 2014. She has been working in North Tampa Behavioral Health and has been in private practice as a licensed marriage and family therapist in Florida since 2015. She was licensed as psychologist in Mexico in 2007. Her focus is on integrative psychotherapy, with emphasis on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Interpersonal Psychotherapy.

Medical Services Staff

Aimee Dougherty-Gallegos, MSN, ARNP-C (she/her/hers)
Aimee Dougherty-Gallegos

Aimee Dougherty-Gallegos joined the Wellness Center in March 2017 as the Certified Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner. In 1999, she received a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Nursing from USF. She obtained her Master’s of Science degree in Nursing from USF in 2010 and is an Adult Board Certified Nurse Practitioner. Her nursing career background includes primary care, women’s health, and oncology. She enjoys educating students and has a special interest in women’s health.

Megan Roller, APRN-BC (she/her/hers) 

Megan Roller

Megan Roller joined the Wellness Center in October 2018 as a board certified Family Nurse Practitioner. She obtained her Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing in 2007, and Masters of Science in Nursing in 2008 from the University of Florida. Her prior nursing experience includes adult primary care and women’s health. She previously worked at the University of Miami student health clinic for seven years before relocating to Tampa Bay. She sees students on Tuesdays and Fridays.

Julia Hilderbrand, LPN (she/her/hers)

Julia Hilderbrand

Julia Hilderbrand is a Licensed Practical Nurse who joined the staff at the USF St. Petersburg’s Wellness Center in April 2013, although she has been working with USF Tampa since August 2009. She received her licensure from Columbia Health Public Schools in Columbia, Missouri. Julia worked at the University of Missouri Student Health Center until 2004 and has also worked in a Dermatology clinic. She has experience with family practice and general health, dermatology, sports medicine, and women’s health. Julia also speaks Spanish and Portuguese.

Barbara Chacon (she/her/hers)

Barbara Chacon

Barbara Chacon is a certified Medical Assistant who joined the staff at the USF St Petersburg’s Wellness Center in March 2014. She received her certification from Concorde Career Institute. Barbara has experience working with family practice, critical care, pulmonology, and sleep disorders. Barbara also speaks Spanish.

Prevention Services Staff

Victoria M. Beltran, MPH, CHES, CSE, Assistant Director, Prevention Services (she/her/hers)

Victoria Beltran

Victoria joined the Wellness Center in 2013. She received her B.A. in Psychology from New York University, her Master of Public Health degree from Emory University, is a Certified Health Education Specialist, and received a certificate of completion in Sexuality Education from the University of Michigan in 2015. She is also a DrPH candidate at USF Tampa and she's the only sole-AASECT Certified Sexuality Educator in Tampa Bay. She believes that health promotion enhances the college experience by helping adults become better students through overall better health and wellness. She is also the advisor for the USF St. Pete HEAT (Health Education Action Team). Her areas of interest include sexual health, alcohol and other drugs, LGBTQIA+ health issues, healthy relationships, violence prevention, nutrition and healthy cooking, program planning, and evaluation. She is also adjunct faculty and teaches Psychology of Human Sexuality. Victoria is a lead Safe Zone Trainer.

Sushma Jakkula, Summer/Fall 2022 MPH Intern

Sushma Jakkula

Sushma Jakkula is a second-year graduate student pursuing her degree in MPH epidemiology at USF Tampa. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Ayurvedic medicine from India, and she currently practices Ayurveda in Tampa. Sushma is passionate about preventive healthcare and helped many to adopt a healthy lifestyle by utilizing Yoga and Ayurveda. She is interested in public health initiatives and programs that are data-driven and impact a larger population. She has a passion to build wellness programs leveraging her experience in holistic healthcare and utilizing research in public health data.

Asim Imtiaz, MPH Intern (he/him)

Asim Imtiaz

Asim Imtiaz joined the Wellness Center in Fall 2022 as an MPH intern. He is currently a graduate student pursuing his MPH degree in Global Communicable Disease at USF Tampa. He previously graduated from USF with a Bachelor's degree in Health Sciences. His primary interest involves an emphasis on prevention strategies and as a peer educator in the College of Public Health, he hopes to create strategies to promote the health and wellness of the student body. He is also passionate about creating surveillance and prevention data using SPSS analysis. His hobbies include the outdoors, sports, and making nutrition plans based on micro/macronutrients.

TBD, Psychology Graduate Intern

Victim Advocacy and Violence Prevention Services

Aubrey Sampson, MA, Victim Advocate (she/her/hers)

Aubrey Hall

Aubrey received her B.A. (2012) and M.A. (2014) in Women’s & Gender Studies from USF. Her studies included community health, higher education and student affairs, gender-based violence, and campus climate for LGBTQ+ students. Prior to joining the Wellness Center, Aubrey worked at a dual-certified domestic and sexual violence facility implementing violence prevention programs and taught classes centered on wellness and social issues. Her interests include social justice, intersectionality, advocacy, restorative justice, and empowering others to be a catalyst for change. In her free time, she loves exploring independent coffee shops, taking her pack to the dog park, traveling, and practicing photography.

Support Staff

Gena Lapinski, Client Services Assistant (she/her/hers)

Rocky the Bull

Gena Lapinski joined the team May 2020 as our Client Services Assistant. She has had many positions in health care offices that focused on customer service and provider support. She will be your first contact, either by phone, email, or in person. She helps schedule students for all appointments, process paperwork and payments, and performs various other administrative duties for the clinical team.

Michelle Farren, Administrative Specialist (she/her/hers)

Rocky the Bull

Michelle joined in the team in Spring 2022 as the Administrative Specialist. She has worked in office administration for 20+ years, most recently in higher education working with EMS & Physical Therapist Assistant Health programs. Her previous work experience includes Physical Therapy clinic administrator and collegiate retail store management. She supports the Wellness Center front desk and may be your first point of contact for scheduling. She is also the liaison to other USF departments to facilitate communication and outcomes, plus day to day business operations. In her spare time, she enjoys exploring local nature preserves, traveling and spending time with family.

Kaitlyn Wood, Federal Work Study Student (she/her/hers)

Kaitlyn Wood

Kaitlyn is a psychology major and a first-year student at USFSP. She enjoys creating fun and interactive ways to include the student body and the Wellness Center. Kaitlyn loves life on campus; one of her favorite activities is hosting weekly get-togethers on her dorm floor where people can meet and catch up with others. She is from Sarasota and enjoys practicing yoga, taking beach trips, and spending quality time with her family.

Specialty Services

PSYCHIATRY

Phyllis Feldman, MD, Psychiatrist (she/her/hers)
Phyllis Feldman

Dr. Phyllis Feldman has been with the Wellness Center since 2014. She received her medical degree from Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine and has been in practice for more than 20 years. She completed a fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the University Of South Florida and is certified in Child, Adolescent, and Adult Psychiatry and Neurology in Psychiatry. She is an Assistant Professor and a USF Safe Zone Ally.

NUTRITION

Katie Jones Webster, MPH, RD, Registered Dietitian (she/her/hers)
Katie Jones Webster

Katie is a registered and licensed dietitian. She has been working at USF Tampa since 2010 and joined the staff at the Wellness Center in 2015. She received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Nutrition and Food Science from Georgia Southern University and Master of Public Health degree from the University of South Florida. Her areas of interest include sports nutrition, weight management and eating disorders.

BEHAVIORAL HEALTH

Evita Persaud, PsyD, Postdoctoral Fellow (she/her/hers)  

Evita Persaud

Dr. Evita Persaud is a Behavioral Health Consultant (BHC) at the USF St. Petersburg campus and a postdoctoral clinician at the USF Tampa campus. She is a Florida native and attended UF, where she majored in Psychology and minored in Disability Studies. She earned her Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology at Xavier University and completed her predoctoral internship at FIU’s Counseling and Psychological Services center. Dr. Persaud’s empirical research pursuits include the following: nurse well-being; the relationship between empathy, compassion fatigue and guilt in healthcare providers; and the use of yoga, mindfulness techniques, and other art-related mediums in treatment. She works from an integrative interpersonal process therapy and incorporates Dialectical Behavioral Therapy or Acceptance and Commitment Therapy to manage presenting concerns. Her clinical areas of interest include identity development within racially and ethnically diverse students, social justice and advocacy work, primary care behavioral health, and emotion regulation skill-building.

MASSAGE THERAPY

Karen Briskin, LMT (she/her/hers)

Karen Briskin

Karen has been licensed in Massage Therapy for over 10 years since she earned her certificate from the Connecticut Center for Massage Therapy. She has practiced in a variety of settings with an underlying mission of holding a space and partnering with clients on their path to wellness. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Communications and Women’s Studies from the University of Delaware and a Master of Arts degree in Counseling and Personnel Services from The College of New Jersey. She currently teaches at the Cortiva Institute of Massage Therapy and is a certified health coach.