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.
Anita Sahgal, PsyD, Director & Psychologist (she/her/hers)
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 Disability 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, Counseling Services & Psychologist (he/him/his)
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)
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)
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.
Daniel Urkov, Practicum Therapist (he/him/his)
Daniel Urkov is a current student at the Florida School of Professional Psychology at National Louis University in pursuit of a Master and Doctorate in Clinical Psychology. His interests in psychology and trauma began during his undergraduate studies at the University of Miami, where he double-majored in Psychology and Motion Pictures to earn a Bachelor of Science degree. During his undergrad, Daniel was a part of the counseling and peer outreach education group, COPE, where he focused on providing education and knowledge of mental health services to the student body. For the last two years, Daniel has volunteered at CASA, which is a domestic violence shelter in Pinellas County, FL. His goals are to provide mental health and psychological services to those affected by adverse traumatic experiences and to those who come from a variety of diverse, cultural backgrounds, particularly within the college-student population.
Kara Hoff, MS, MA, Practicum Therapist (sher/her/hers)Kara is a current student at the Florida School of Professional Psychology at National Louis University in pursuit of a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology. She is a Pennsylvania native who relocated to Florida to complete her education. In clinical practice, Kara works from an integrative model that incorporates psychodynamic and interpersonal approaches. She believes the therapeutic relationship is the driving agent of change in therapy and works mindfully to provide a comfortable space where the client can feel safe and heard while navigating the uncomfortable. Her clinical interests include interpersonal difficulties, perfectionism, grief and loss, athletic/performance anxiety, identity issues, substance misuse, sexual assault, and relationships.
Brianna Barnes, Practicum Therapist (sher/her/hers)Brianna is a doctoral graduate student in the Clinical Psychology program at the Florida School of Professional Psychology at National Louis University. She has experience working in different roles in a variety of settings including college counseling centers, inpatient substance abuse, community mental health organizations, and community-based care. Brianna’s wellness approach is an integrative interpersonal approach that incorporates mindfulness, emotion-focused, and cognitive-behavioral interventions while meeting each client where they are at regarding their specific circumstances and needs. Her professional interests include adjustment and transition issues, interpersonal relationship difficulties, women’s issues, sexual orientation and gender diversity, marginalized populations, anxiety and mood disorders, and stressful and traumatic experiences.
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 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 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 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.
Victoria M. Beltran, MPH, CHES, CSE, Assistant Director, Prevention Services (she/her/hers)
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 student at USF Tampa and she's the only AASECT Certified Sexuality Educator in Tampa Bay. She believes that health promotion enhances the college experience by helping young adults become better students through overall better health and wellness. She is also the advisor for P.E.E.R.S. (Promoting Education, Empowerment, Education, and Support). Her areas of interest include sexual health, alcohol and other drugs, LGBTQIA+ health issues, healthy relationships, domestic and relationship violence prevention, nutrition and healthy cooking, program planning, and evaluation. She teaches 2 classes at USF St. Petersburg: Health for Life and Human Sexuality. Victoria is a lead Safe Zone Trainer.
TBD Field Placement Intern
Aubrey Hall, MA, Victim Advocate (she/her/hers)
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.
Gena Lapinski, Client Services Assistant (she/her/hers)
Gena Lapinski joined the team May 2020 as our new 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.
Kadife Koyuncu, Administrative Specialist (she/her/hers)
Kadife received her B.A. in teaching English from abroad and had ten years teaching experience before moving to the U.S. She worked at USF in College of Education for four years before joining USF St. Petersburg’s Wellness Center in 2010. Kadife is responsible for the daily operations of the Wellness Center office including: web-site editing, travel, purchasing, budgeting, client scheduling, correspondence, special projects, and supervising support personnel.
Charis Bequette, Federal Work Study Student (she/her/hers)
Charis is a first-year student majoring in Business Management. Before attending USF St. Petersburg, she took a gap year where she took part in a 6-month graphic design internship located in Chiang Mai, Thailand. She worked with the organization Project Video and learned about videography, photography, and graphic design. This was an inspiring learning experience that taught her how to work on a team and about the artistic side of technology.
PSYCHIATRYPhyllis Feldman, MD, Psychiatrist (she/her/hers)
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.
NUTRITIONKatie Jones Webster, MPH, RD, Registered Dietitian (she/her/hers)
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.
Jacob Schlierf, PsyD, Post-doctoral Psychology Fellow (he/him/his)
Dr. Jacob Schlierf earned his Psy.D. in Counseling Psychology, with a concentration in Athletic Counseling, from Springfield College in Massachusetts. Dr. Schlierf is a native of Florida’s east coast and earned his B.S. in Psychology from the University of Florida. He then went on to earn his M.S. in Exercise and Sport Sciences with a concentration in Sport Psychology from Ithaca College in New York. He recently completed his doctoral internship at USF Tampa campus' Counseling Center. Dr. Schlierf works from an integrative perspective, including elements of person-centered, solution-focused, and acceptance and commitment therapy. His areas of interest include: anxiety, depression, behavioral health, exercise and wellness, grief and loss, developmental trauma, PTSD, interpersonal relationships, romantic relationships, sleep difficulties, physical injury, and sport performance.
Karen Briskin, LMT (she/her/hers)
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.