We're Here To Help

The Counseling and Life Development Staff are available to assist all current Webster University students, faculty, and staff. If you have any personal issues interfering with your success at Webster University or beyond, please know that we are here to help. If you have a particular counselor with whom you would like to meet, just let us know.


The first step is up to you. Stop by or call our office to make an appointment, or e-mail us now to find out more. Just walk-in to our office at 540 Garden Avenue; call the Counseling and Life Development office at (314) 968-7030; or e-mail counselingld@webster.edu (non-confidential).

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Common Reasons for Counseling

The Bullets of Abusive Relationships

  • Does your partner get angry when you talk on the phone?
  • Does s/he open your mail?
  • Is your partner angry when you are just a little late getting home?
  • Does your partner want you home when s/he is home?
  • Does s/he keep you from seeing friends or say bad things about the people you like?
  • Are you sometimes afraid of your partner?
  • Do you worry about what s/he will think about how you dress?
  • Do you ask your partner who you can see or whether you can go out?
  • Are you careful of what you say so that s/he won't get upset?
  • Do you feel like you are walking on eggshells?
  • Does s/he call you names like "stupid, "bitch" or "bastard"?
  • Does your partner say no one else would want you?
  • Does s/he tell you what is "wrong" with you in front of other people?
  • Has s/he made you do things that make you feel ashamed?
  • Has your partner said s/he will go crazy or kill him/herself if you leave?
  • Does your partner react to things by yelling, slamming doors or throwing things?
  • Does your partner refuse to let you go out unless you do as s/he says?
  • Does your partner threaten to hit you if you don't obey?
  • Does s/he force sex on you when you don't want it?
  • Do you work so hard to please him or her that you feel worn out?
  • Are you unable to do things you used to do easily?
  • After your partner has been mean, does s/he act sweet and loving?
  • After you partner has hit you, does s/he act remorseful and say s/he'll never do it again?
  • When you decide to leave, does s/he give you hope for change?
  • When you consider leaving, do you decide to stay because you think of the good times and hope they will happen again?

If any of these bullets apply to your relationship, it may be abusive

Abuse can be emotional, intellectual, physical, social, spiritual, and vocational. People in abusive relationships often feel very alone, embarrassed, and trapped. The important thing to know is that this is NOT your fault. You have the right to be treated with respect and kindness.

Call or come to Counseling/Life Development. We are located at 540 Garden Avenue, 314-968-7030.

The Signs of Addictive Relationships

  • Even though you know the relationship is bad for you (and perhaps others have told you this), you take no effective steps to end it.
  • You give yourself reasons for staying in the relationship that are not really accurate or that are not strong enough to counter-act the harmful aspects of the relationship
  • When you think about ending the relationship, you feel terrible anxiety and fear which makes you cling to it even more.
  • When you take steps to end the relationship, you suffer painful withdrawal symptoms, including physical discomfort, that is only received by reestablishing contact.

If any of these signs apply to your relationships, it may be addictive

  • Make your "recovery" the first priority in your life.
  • Become "selfish" i.e. focus on getting your own needs met more effectively.
  • Courageously face your own problems and shortcomings.
  • Cultivate whatever needs to be developed in yourself i.e. fill in gaps that have made you feel undeserving or bad about yourself.
  • Learn to stop managing and controlling others; by being more focused on your own needs, you will no longer need to seek security by trying to make theirs change.
  • Develop your "spiritual" side i.e. find out what brings you peace and serenity and commit some time, at least half an hour daily to that endeavor.
  • Learn not to get "hooked" into the games of relationships: avoid dangerous roles you then to fall into e.g. "rescuer," "persecutor," "victim."
  • Find a support group of friends who understand.
  • Share with others what you have experienced.
  • Consider getting professional help.

When to seek professional help

  • When you are very unhappy in a relationship, but are unsure of whether you should accept it as it is, make further efforts to improve it, or get out of it.
  • When you have concluded that you should end a relationship, have tried to make yourself end it, but remain stuck.
  • When you suspect that you are staying in a relationship for the wrong reasons, such as feelings of guilt or fear of being alone, and you have been unable to over come the paralyzing effects of such feelings.
  • When you recognize that you have a pattern of staying in bad relationships and have not been able to change that pattern yourself.

Abstinence means waiting to have sex. And, a lot of young people are choosing abstinence. Why? Here are some of their top reasons:

  • I'm just not ready for sex.
  • I'd rather not have to think about birth control and safer sex.
  • I don't want to risk HIV or any other sexually transmitted disease.
  • I'm not ready to risk pregnancy.
  • I'm following my values.
  • I'm honoring my religious beliefs.
  • I want to wait for a committed relationship or marriage.
  • I'm not ready for the emotional stress of a sexual relationship.
  • It's my body, my decision!

The Domestic Abuse Intervention Project states that weapons of Abuse include:


Yelling, screaming , belittling, raising fists, knocking down doors, "playing with" guns or weapons, threats, playing mind games....these are subtle messages that an abuser uses to tell his victim to "watch it."

Verbal Attacks

By attacking verbally the abuser keeps his hands clean but effectively degrades and intimidates his victim until her senses of perception is unstable, and her self-esteem is lowered until she believes what he says is true


The abuser is better able to control their victim if they can isolate them from family, friends, and people who can help. Often the victim becomes a prisoner in their own home, unable to invite people over, and unable to go out, without their permission

Minimizing, Denying & Blaming

The abuser needs someone else on which to place blame because their fragile ego cannot handle it. An abuser may become psychotic by denying that they hurt the victim followed by accusing them for hurting him and then minimizing the injuries. It is also common for an abuser to say to their victim, "you made me hit you."

Using Children

An abuser who wants to use children as weapons may take their ex-spouse to court when they withhold visitation because the children are sick. An abuser will also feel a great sense of control by keeping the children past the court-appointed time of visitation or refusing to provide their ex-spouse with travel information when they take them out of town.

Abusing Authority

Many abusers distort the Scriptures to validate their heavy handed control and to keep their spouse in line. Whenever he/she fails to meet their demands there is a reminder that he/she is head of this house and he/she must submit to whatever he/she said.

Economic Control

This type of abuse leaves the victim helplessly in the abuser's control as they have to beg for every penny and account for the pittance he/she is given. It often leaves them trapped without means to get help.

Coercion and Threats

An abuser uses threats to keep his victim in continuous fear so they will do whatever he/she demands. He may even coerce you into illegal acts by intimidation and belittling.

Physical Violence

When an abuser's power and control is threatened they will usually resort to physical violence to instill fear and regain control.

Types of Dysfunctional Families

The following are some examples of patterns that frequently occur in dysfunctional families.

  • One or both parents have addictions or compulsions (e.g. drugs, alcohol, promiscuity, gambling, overworking, and/or overeating) that may have strong influence on family members.
  • One or both parents use the threat or application of physical violence as primary means of control. Children may have to witness violence, may be forced to participate in punishing, siblings, or may live in fear of explosive outbursts.
  • One or both parents exploit the children and treat them as possessions whose primary purpose is to respond to the physical and/or emotional needs of adults (e.g. protecting a parent or cheering up one who is depressed).
  • One or both parents are unable to provide, or threaten to withdraw, financial or basic physical care for their children. Similarly, one or both parents fail to provide their children with adequate emotional support.
  • One or both parents exert strong authoritarian control over the children. Often these families rigidly adhere to a particular belief (religious, political, financial, and personal) Compliance with role expectations and rules is expected without any flexibility

There is a great deal of variability how often dysfunction interactions and behavior occur in families and in the kinds of severity of their dysfunction. However when patterns like the above are rather than the exception they systematically foster abuse and/or neglect.

Children may:

  • Be forced to take sides in conflicts between parents.
  • Experience "reality shifting" in which what is said contradicts what is actually happening (e.g. a parent may deny something happened that the child actually observed, for example when a parent describes a disastrous holiday dinner as a good time).
  • Be ignored, discounted, or criticized for their feelings and thoughts.
  • Have parents that are inappropriately intrusive, overly involved, and protective.
  • Have parents that are inappropriately distant and uninvolved with their children
  • Have excessive structure and demands placed on their time, choice of friends, or behavior; or conversely, receive no guidelines or structure.
  • Experience rejection or preferential treatment.
  • Be restricted from full or direct communication with other family members.
  • Be allowed or encouraged to use drugs and alcohol
  • Be locked out of the house
  • Be slapped, hit, scratched, punched or kicked.

Making Changes

Sometimes we continue in our roles because we are waiting for our parents to give us permission to change. But that permission can come only from you. Like most people patterns in dysfunctional families often feel threatened by changes in their children.

As a result, they may thwart your efforts to change and insist that you "change back." That's why it's so important for you to trust your own perceptions and feelings. Change begins with you. Some specific things you can do include:

  • Make a list of our behaviors, beliefs, etc. that you would like to change.
  • Next to each item on the list write down the behavior, belief, ect. that you would like to do/have instead
  • Pick one item on your list and beginning practicing the alternate behavior or belief. Choose the easiest item first
  • Once you are able to do the alternate behavior more often than the original pick another item on the list and practice changing it to.
  • In addition to working on your own, you might find it helpful to work with a group of people with similar experiences and /or with a professional counselor.

Special Considerations

As you make changes, keep in mind the following:

  • Stop trying to be perfect. In addition, don't try to make your family perfect.
  • Realize that you are not in control of other people's lives. You do not have the power to make others change.
  • Don't try to win the old struggles you can't win.
  • Set clear limits-e.g. if you do not plan on visitng your parents for the holiday, say "no", not "maybe."
  • Identify what you would like to have happen. Recognize when you stop behaving the way you used to, even for a short time, there may be adverse reactions from your family or friends. Anticipate what the reactions will be (e.g. tears, yelling, other intimidating responses) and decide how you will respond

The Prevalence of Eating Disorders

In the United States, conservative estimates indicate that after puberty 5-10% of girls and women and 1 million boys and men are struggling with eating disorders, including: anorexia, bulimia, binge eating, or borderline conditions. Because of the secretiveness and shame associated with eating disorders, many cases are probably not reported.

In addition many individuals struggle with body dissatisfaction and disordered eating attitudes and behaviors. For example 80% of American women are dissatisfied with their appearance.

The drive for thinness

  • 42% of 1st-3rd grade girls want to be thinner
  • 81% of 10-year-olds are afraid of being fat
  • The average American woman is 5'4" and weighs 140 pounds. The average American model is 5'11" and weighs 117 pounds
  • Most fashion models are thinner than 98% of American women


  • 51% of 9 and 10 year old girls feel better about themselves if they are on a diet
  • 46% of 9-11 year olds are "sometimes" or "very often" on diets and 82% of their families are "sometimes" or "very often" on diets
  • 91% of women recently surveyed on a college campus have attempted to control their weight through dieting 22% dieted "often" or "always"
  • 95% of all dieters will regain their lost weight in 1-5 years
  • 35% of "normal dieters" progress to pathological dieting, Of those, 25-22% progress to partial or full-syndrome eating disorders
  • 25% of American men and 45% of American women are on a diet on any given day
  • Americans spend over $40 billion on dieting and diet-related products each year

Homesickness is a term that is often used to describe feelings of loss, confusion, anxiety and loneliness following a move or major change in life. It is very common. Almost everyone experiences it at one time or another, and people who have just started at a new school in a new place are at high risk.

What that means is that if you are feeling homesick after starting at Webster, you are probably not alone; in fact, you're normal! The other good news is that homesickness can be overcome. This Web page will provide you with some resources to help deal with and beat homesickness. Read through it, try some of the ideas, and if they don't work try something different!

So what can I do about Homesickness? All kinds of things. Here are some ideas of things to help you stay connected to home while still getting comfortable at Webster. Try these and see if you can think of others...

Create a "home away from home."

  • Bring familiar things from home to decorate your room; make your new space somewhere you feel comfortable.

Keep a journal.

  • Write about your fears, excitements, achievements, expectations and other experiences.

Talk with someone who has been through it.

  • If you have an older friend or sibling, even a parent, who has survived homesickness, it may help to talk to them about what you are feeling and what they did to get through it.

Make plans to go home and stick to them.

  • Don't just go home impulsively, and stay on campus at least as often as you go home.

Find ways to communicate regularly with friends & family at home.

  • Budget money for phone-calls.
  • Send E-mail.
  • Use Instant Messaging or other Internet chat options.

Make a commitment to meet people here, and make the time to do so.

  • Attend floor functions.
  • If you live in a residence hall, leave your door open so people can stop by and say hello.
  • Talk to people in the halls & other common areas.

Get to know the place - Explore!

  • Get comfortable with the campus and surrounding area.
  • Bring someone else along with you and share the experience.

Go to campus events.

  • Sports, concerts, theater, homecoming, etc.

Get Involved.

  • Make an effort to get to know your classmates.
  • Find an organization(s) that involve your interests & go to the meetings.
  • If the first organization you try isn't right for you, try another!

Find a hobby.

  • Just having something to do will help keep you from brooding about home.

Avoid negative coping strategies.

  • Don't use alcohol, drugs or sex to hide from homesickness (or anything else); those problems will still be there and new ones will get added on!

Find a balance between work & play.

  • Added stress from pushing yourself too hard in class and having no fun can make homesickness worse. So can stress from playing too hard and blowing off class!

Take care of yourself.

  • Be sure to get enough food & sleep. Hunger and exhaustion will only make things worse!

If things get too bad, talk to us.

And remember, homesickness often passes on its own as a person becomes more involved with his or her new surroundings. The suggestions above will help you to do just that while keeping some of the support you have from home. With time and some effort, almost everyone does just fine!

What if Homesickness doesn't go away on its own? While homesickness usually goes away after a few weeks, it can sometimes be more persistent. If this is the case, you may wish to: Talk to someone who can help you through it.

  • A trusted professor
  • Your RA
  • Your advisor
  • A clergy member
  • A counselor

Consider if Webster is the right place for you to be right now.

Homesickness is often just a manifestation of fears about the future and is overcome once we realize that we can cope in a new situation; however, sometimes it is a sign that we need to be somewhere else in order to do what is best for us. If you feel that this may be the case in your situation, we encourage you to discuss this option with your advisor and/or a counselor before you make your final decision so that you can make the most informed choice possible.

If you want some more resources for homesickness, you can check the net. One place to try is www.HumanityQuest.com. Click here for their homesickness page.

24-Hour Emergency Line

(314) 649-8474


Campus Advocate (a licensed counselor in the Office of Counseling and Life Development)

(314) 246-7030 (Note: this is the number to leave a message or to schedule an appointment)

The Campus Advocate serves as the support and resource person for students, faculty, and staff who are survivors of a sexual offense.

The Advocate has training in crisis intervention and support techniques and provides, either directly or through referral, emotional and informational support for survivors.


Department of Public Safety

(314) 246-7430 or (314) 246-6911 (for emergencies)


Title IX - Sexual Misconduct Education & Resources

Title IX Coordinator

Kimberley Pert
Interim Head of Webster University's Title IX Office
470 E. Lockwood Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63119

Exams. Sports. Homework. Work. Friends. Family. No wonder you're stressed! It is tough to balance school with the rest of your life. Before you get too stressed, take a look at the tips below:

Find out how to manage stress, time and even manage to have fun! You Know you're stressed if....

  • You're not sleeping
  • You feel nervous all the time.
  • You forget important things
  • You get sick a lot
  • You want to drop out

IF stress has taken over, it is time to take action.

When stress hits big, take a time out.

Walk around the block. Clear your head breathe slowly in and out. Close your eyes and picture a favorite place. Taking a few minutes to regroup can help you get a handle on stress. Walk around the block. Clear your head breathe slowly in and out. Close your eyes and picture a favorite place. Taking a few minutes to regroup can help you get a handle on stress.

Take time for you.

Eat well. You'll be able to handle stress better. Exercise. It is one of the best ways to help with stress. No time to exercise? Walk to the library. Stretch at your desk. Take the stairs. Don't use drugs, alcohol, or tobacco. They are likely to create more stress.

Share your problems with your friends and family.

It helps to talk things over with someone close. Ask for help. A friend could fix you dinner. A classmate could help you study.

Sleep at night, not in class.

Without sleep you can't think straight or make good decisions. Try to get at least 7-8 hours a night an all nighter may seem like a good way to catch up on studying, but you are wrong. Chances are that you will crash the next day in the middle of that exam!

You can't do it all. You're only human.

Learn to say no to extra activities, you'll have more time to focus on what really matters. Remember, being too busy is a large source of stress.

Plan ahead to avoid being too busy.

Take a few minutes each night to organize the next day. Always keep your glasses, keys, and class supplies in one place to avoid last-minute panics. Consider making weekly schedule, include time for studying, exercise, friends and work.

Take it one day at a time.

You may feel extra stress during an illness, exams or a big break-up. Take a deep breath. Then use the tips above to get through it. Plan a reward for yourself when the crunch is over. If you feel you can't get through it talk with a doctor or a counselor.

At Webster, we promote responsible choices concerning drugs/alcohol and to assist students who have substance abuse problems.

What We Do

  • Assessment of Alcohol and Drug Problems
  • Treatment of Alcohol and Drug Problems
  • A.A./N.A. Programs On-Campus
  • Referrals to residential treatment
  • STOP (Students Trying Out Prevention)
  • Alcohol 101: A computer interactive program for Alcohol and Drug Awareness
  • Peer Educator Zeitgeist (PEZ): Activities, events, and information to promote responsible choices concerning drugs, alcohol, sex and personal relationships.
  • Community Outreach Programs:
  • STOP (Students Trying Out Prevention)
  • Server Training to local businesses to increase awareness to those serving alcoholic beverages.


  • 1992-94 Funding for the Improvement of Post Secondary Education (FIPSE)
  • Rutgers University & George Mason University Promising Practice Recipient
  • City of Webster Groves Award for Safe Community
  • Missouri MADD Chapter Awardee for Education and Safety


Patrick Stack, Counselor, at 314-968-7030 for more information or stackpa@webster.edu as well as www.ulifeline.org.

Counseling and Therapy Resources


You must be mentally ill to go to therapy.
The therapist can read your mind. 
The therapist knows all of the answers. 
The therapist does most of the work. 
Therapy will solve all of your problems.
Therapy will always work. 
Therapy will force you to change.


All of the statements above are myths.

Many people go to therapy after everything else they've tried has failed. Therapy is used as a last resort when the advice of family and friends and self-help books haven't produced the desired results. To some, asking for professional help is a sign of weakness. "Everyone has the same kinds of problems, and mostly the same situations, so what's wrong with me that I need professional help?" We sometimes think if we go into therapy we are not as good as, or an normal as, everyone else.

There's a pervasive underlying feeling that it's wrong to ask for professional help with mental, emotional, or spiritual problems. We are supposed to know how to handle most situations, unless we're really sick and then a pill should take care of it. It's only okay to ask for therapy for a little while; once we are over the shock we should know what to do. Or, maybe if we leave the issue alone, it will go away or be worked out, and we won't have to do anything. The body is supposed to heal itself. Isn't that right? What do you believe about therapy?

How did you answer the questions? Did you answer true to any of these statements? If you answered false to every statement, your beliefs about therapy are accurate. Each of the true-false statements is a myth.

Therapy is a personalized, interactive relationship between the therapist and the client, and designed to help clients examine their ideas about themselves and their lives. Therapy requires some commitment to the process and may involve the individual, the family or a group.

The therapist is educated in basic human behavior and the dynamics of thoughts, actions and behaviors and how these can affect the community. Therapists explore theories about communication, family dynamics, self-development, ethics and, which systems are integrated into a comprehensive plan of study involving actual therapy practice with clients. In order to maintain and improve competence, most therapists continue to receive ongoing supervision after they receive an advanced degree in counseling.

You have no doubt heard many terms to describe therapy such as behavior modification, group therapy, play therapy, music therapy, art therapy, transactional analysis, psychotherapy, family therapy, etc. Therapy terms are usually related to the theory, method, or techniques espoused by the therapist, or the medium and used to work towards an end, or goal.

The therapist works with you to help you achieve what you decide you want to achieve. The process involves introspection and hard work on your part. It's not easy to "look" at yourself or your life, and think about how and what you want changed. The therapist is the guide, not the pathfinder. You are your own pathfinder.


Codependent Interdependent
Compelled, driven, intense, compulsive, possessive. Compulsive need to keep partner so tied to the other that every thought, word, and action is guarded. Freedom of choice individuality, promoting growth. Partner acts in the other's best interest and gives them room and encouragement to grow and express their own individuality.
Enmeshed identities, feeling threatened by differences Suffocating closeness and attitude of "You have to be just like me." Separate identities, good self-esteem, values differences Self-esteem comes from within, not from the other person; partners value the differences of the other.
Attributes strength of relationship, the other person or control over the other person. I can't live with your mentality or dictator/servant roles. Attributes strength to two separate entities working together to achieve a mutual goal. Strength comes from within not through other person.
Intense ups and downs. Cycle of behavior from good to violent; assumes the roles of victim, victimizer, and rescuer at certain intervals of the cycle. Consistency and predictability. Maintains consistent attitude of respect; partner knows what to expect in any situation and can trust the others commitment.
Narrow support system one or both partners crowd out other relationships or isolate themselves or their partner from other people, including family. Broad support system. Both partners include outside activities to bring a healthy balance and growth to their relationship.
Stock-market syndrome or people pleasers. One partner reacts to the mood of the other. If he is having a bad day, you have a bad day. If he is happy you are happy. Stable self-esteem. You sympathize care for the other person, but you do not take on their hurt or problems as your own.
Refusal to deal with the past, denying and repeating problems. Repeats dysfunctional behavior of parents, but denies there are any problems. Open to periodic evaluation and opportunities for change. Evaluates the relationship and is open to healthy change and growth.
Need to control or be controlled: manipulative; self-centered. "I want what I want when I want it "or " you do exactly what I say or else" attitude; often very critical and verbally abusive. Mutual submission. Surrendering power for the other person's own good; relinquishing your rights and not keeping score
Dishonesty and refusal to admit wrong. Won't admit faults; demands all family members to keep quiet about life at home; rationalizes and lies to cover up bad behavior. Honest and characterized by integrity. Admits and makes amends for wrong behavior; motives are not self-centered; speaks directly and honestly; can be trusted.

Spiritual Wellness

Wellness is an evolving and changing process in which we participate in the development and integration of all aspects of our physical, social, spiritual, emotional, occupational and intellectual well-being.

A person with spiritual wellness is one who  strives for a sense of satisfaction and confidence with personal spiritual beliefs, experiences a maturing sense of inner peace and security, has a growing set of beliefs that help support mental and emotional strength, draws on inner strength during  good times and bad, periodically chooses to rethink values and apply them to life, and cares about the welfare of humanity and acts upon that concern.


Campus Ministry offers a variety of spiritual wellness services to students from all denominations and traditions.

Fellowships are also organized for students who desire to participate in social, as well as spiritual activities.


Campus Ministry is located at 540 Garden Ave. (near the bookstore).

Other Local Ministers:

Fr. Kevin Schmittgens
Our Holy Redeemer
17 Joy Avenue
St. Louis, MO 63119

The Rev. Dr. Laurel Hayes
Stillpoint Multi-Faith Campus Ministry
Webster University
470 E. Lockwood Avenue
314 Webster Hall
Webster Groves, MO 63119-4250
Twitter: @StillpointMCM
Pastor Titus Codjoe
First Love Church
St. Louis
Friends of Africans
14550 New Halls Ferry Rd
Florissant, MO 63033

Rev. Stephanie Doeschot
Christ Lutheran
1 Selma Avenue
Webster Groves, MO 63119

Rabbi Jordon Gerson
St. Louis Hillel
6300 Forsyth Boulevard
St. Louis, MO 63105

Imam Mufti Asif Umar
Islamic Foundation of Greater St. Louis
517 Weidman Road
Ballwin, MO 63011

Miranda Stewart/Lee & Emily Ruppel
217-276-3953 - Miranda mobile
217-652-3727 - Lee mobile
309-337-9496 - Emily mobile

Dolly Lenz
Jehovah's Witnesses
115 Baxter Road
St. Louis, MO 63011

Mark Robertson
Old Orchard Church
640 Amelia
Webster Groves, MO 63119-4250

Amanda Hancock
Webster Hills United Methodist Church
698 West Lockwood Avenue
Webster Groves, MO 63119
314-961-3164 ext. 221

Rabbi Hershey Novack
Chabad on Campus
Dodi Smason
7018 Forsyth Boulevard
St. Louis, MO 63105
314-721-2884 office

Ed & Angie Moncada
Friends of Internationals
10710 Meath Drive
St. Louis, MO 63123
314-650-9518 mobile

Matt Fulmer
The Gathering
United Methodist Church
2360 McCausland Ave
St. Louis, MO 63143
314-646-7172 office
Rev. Jenny Hulen
Emmanuel Episcopal Church
9 Bompart Avenue
Webster Groves, MO 63119-4250
314-961-2393 office

Buddhist Temple
Sha'ul Hirschmann-Senior Priest
(Ngakpa Chokyi Lodu)
Blue Lotus Dharma Center
3463 Itaska St. #1F
St. Louis, MO 63111

Zen Buddhist Temple
Ven. Rosan Yoshida
Missouri Zen Center
220 Spring Avenue
Webster Groves, MO 63119

Rev. Dr. Terrell Carter
Webster Groves Baptist Church
308 Summit Avenue
Webster Groves, MO 63119-4250
314-704-9111 mobile







Client confidentiality is always a priority for the Counseling and Life Development Staff. We understand that confidentiality is essential to the success of your counseling experience. As a client, you can trust us to protect your privacy.

Confidentiality is not a privilege; it is a right. No family members, friends, faculty or staff have the right to your personal information. Of course, as with any rights there are particular circumstances under which you waive this right. The counselor will discuss this with you during your initial session or over the phone should you prefer.

Student Counseling & Life Development Staff

Patrick StackEmail: stackpa@webster.edu (non-confidential)

Dr. Patrick Stack is in his 33nd year as director of Counseling/Life Development. He received his BA in Philosophy from Suffolk University, Boston; MDiv from St. John's School of Theology, Boston; MEd in general counseling, from the University of Missouri–St. Louis; DMin from Eden Theological Seminary–St. Louis; Professional Certificate in Marriage and Family therapy from Washington University in St. Louis. Patrick is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) and approved Missouri State supervisor, Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and approved Missouri State supervisor, National Board Certified Counselor (NBCC), Certified Reciprocal Advanced Alcohol Drug Counselor (CRAADC), and holds Clinical Status and Approved Supervisor Status in the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT).

Dr. Stack promotes Wellness as a clinician, author and speaker, and has designed and implemented a Wellness clinical assessment instrument. He and his wife P.J., who is retired as a Board Certified Art Therapist (ATR-BC) and Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), enjoy their daughters and nine year old granddaughter.

Samantha SippleEmail: samanthasipple86@webster.edu (non-confidential)

Samantha Sipple, MSW, LCSW, is the Assistant Director of Counseling/Life Development and serves as the Sexual Offense Advocate for Webster University. Samantha received her BA in Psychology with a minor in Gender and Sexuality Studies from Rhodes College in Memphis, TN, and her Master's in Social Work with a mental health concentration from the George Warren Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis, MO. Samantha is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and member of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW). She is a nationally rostered Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapist (TF-CBT) and has been trained in a variety of evidence-based practices including (but not limited to) Prolonged Exposure Therapy (PE), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Samantha's clinical interests include acute and complex trauma, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and chronic emotion dysregulation.

In her spare time, Samantha enjoys hiking, biking, camping, and traveling with her family.

Carol HodsonEmail:  hodsonca@webster.edu (non-confidential)

Dedicated Advocate for Mental Health to the Leigh Gerdine College of Fine Arts

The arts enrich our lives, intensify our awareness and make us better human beings. That said, life as a student in Theatre, Dance, Music, or the Visual Arts has its’ own unique challenges. To succeed in the arts, you must be open to life, but life as an emerging adult with a full-time schedule in racialized, politicized, fast-paced global pandemic world, well that can really suck. My approach to therapy combines confidential conversation with expressive arts therapy techniques that tap into the healing power of drama, movement, visual arts, music, and prose.  Additionally, I am trained in Somatic Experiencing, a body-based approach to healing that is effective in reducing anxiety, releasing trauma, and increasing your capacity to self-regulate emotionally and physiologically.

I’d be honored to meet with you and see if I might be able to support you as you strive to become your best self. And sometimes, on really tough days, we can just have a cup of tea together and I can remind you that you are “good enough” already.

I have an MA in Counseling from Lesley University, an MFA in Sculpture from Tyler School of Art, and a BFA in Painting and Education from the School of Visual Arts in NYC.

In addition to being an artist, therapist and professor, I actively support Black Lives Matter, LGBTQ life, Gender Equality, my beautiful 18-year old daughter, and two gnarly cats. 

JJ MeyerEmail: jmxvf@mail.umsl.edu (non-confidential)

JJ Meyer is a doctoral student at University of Missouri, St. Louis, with focuses on counselor education, career, and clinical mental health counseling. JJ employs Narrative Therapy as her primary approach in individual therapy, and uses the Gottman's methodology for couples. In addition, she also applies mindfulness and attachment-informed practices while working with students. Prior to her transition to counseling, JJ enjoyed a career in pharmaceutical and biotech industries. She holds a PhD in Biochemistry from Virginia Tech, an MBA from Washington University, and a Master in Counseling from UMSL.

JJ enjoys spending time with family and friends during the weekend, and does oil painting whenever time permits.

Carlos BurgosEmail: cburgos@tjs.org (non-confidential)

Carlos Burgos, PLPC, is the Assistant Director of Advancement at Thomas Jefferson School. He received his BA in Educational Studies and his MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Webster University. Carlos ran a respite program for kids with autism shortly after graduating with his Masters. Carlos believes "it is the relationship that heals" when working with clients and/or students.

Carlos has a passion for traveling. "Being able to experience different cultures and to get out of my comfort zone brings me great joy". Carlos also plays in a Hispanic baseball league during the summer.

An'drea BaileyEmail:  anbrzf@umsystem.edu (non-confidential)

An'drea Bailey is a graduate student at the University of Missouri - St. Louis and is completing her Master's degree in clinical mental health counseling. An'drea received her BA in Psychology from Fontbonne University in St. Louis, MO. She has clinical interests in stress management, depression, self-care and trauma. An'drea believes, "a change in your mindset will bring more positive changes in your life, and no matter how hopeless a situation may seem, things can get better."

An'drea enjoys roller/ice skating, playing basketball, playing games, being on roller coasters, watching movies, sewing, eating at different restaurants, listening to music, traveling (especially going on cruises), camping, and spending time with her family, friends, and three dogs.

Tabor BurkeEmail:  ttbqkm@umsystem.edu (non-confidential)

Tabor Burke is currently pursuing a Master's degree in clinical mental health counseling at the University of Missouri - St. Louis. Tabor prefers a strengths-based cognitive behavioral approach to help each person tap into their potential and feel truly heard. Previously, Tabor received a B.A. in English from Arizona State University and a J.D. from Washington University St. Louis School of Law. Before entering counseling, Tabor practiced as a real estate lawyer, food entrepreneur, and tax credit consultant. 

Tabor enjoys cooking, hot yoga, and spending time with her husband, dog, and two children (when they are home from college).

Bill MichalskyEmail: wjmbk6@mail.umsl.edu (non-confidential)

Bill Michalski is a graduate student at the University of Missouri - St. Louis and is completing his Master's degree in clinical mental health counseling. Bill has had an artistic bent since childhood. He earned his BA in studio art at Webster University in 2000 and worked in the graphic design field for 15 years. Bill resolves to be an empathetic and supportive companion in untangling the struggles and celebrating the accomplishments of his clients. He believes every person is unique, capable of growth, and not reducible to any label or diagnosis.

Bill is an active songwriter, musician, and visual artist. He also enjoys traveling with his wife, watching birds and watching trains.

Melissa AndersonEmail:  ma828@lindenwood.edu (non-confidential)

Melissa is a graduate student at Lindenwood University, completing her Master's in professional counseling. She also holds a Master's in Biological and Physical Sciences and a PhD in Microbiology, both from the University of Virginia. Her varying roles in higher education have allowed her to work with diverse individuals in the university community, always emphasizing social justice and equity.

Melissa works to create a safe, supportive, and non-judgmental space where each person feels seen. Her overall style is best described as connection-focused, warm, and genuine. Melissa personalizes sessions to meet each client's needs and goals, while keeping in mind cultural differences and specific experiences of marginalization. She appreciates working with a wide variety of people on issues that include gender and sexuality, life transitions, interpersonal and relationship issues, anxiety, depression, and stress management.

Melissa enjoys biking, running, reading queer YA, watching cooking shows, and being outside.

Martha ReisEmail:  martha.reis@wustl.edu (non-confidential)

Martha is a graduate student at the Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis, concentrating in mental health. Her previous academic experiences include graduating from John Burroughs School in St. Louis and earning her Bachelor's Degree from Boston College with a Psychology major and English minor. After completing her undergraduate degree, Martha moved to Spain to work as a Culture and Language Ambassador teaching English and a variety of other subjects for three years before pursuing her graduate studies. Martha is passionate about supporting students through their emotional, interpersonal and intersectional college experience.

Martha implements a strength-based perspective and tailors her therapeutic approach for each individuals' goals for counseling. Her professional interests include existential concerns, life transitions, and emerging adulthood. 

Amidst school and work roles, Martha is also a tutor, coach and mentor for student with learning disabilities and IEPS. In her free time Martha enjoys going to the theater, reading, and dancing. She loves practicing Spanish and hopes to resume traveling when possible.

Jimmy LeeEmail:  leejimmy@wustl.edu (non-confidential)

Jimmy Lee (they/them/theirs) is a graduate student at the Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis, concentrating in mental health. Previously, they worked at the Utah Pride Center in Salt Lake City with queer and trans youth and families. They worked to foster and building community through programming and events. They remember fondly the uniquely smelling "food" mashups from the microwave, the DIY outfits and soul-nourishing lip-syncs, and the resiliency showcased in challenging environments.

They are passionate and excited about supporting students through various and ongoing transitions in life and the accompanying emotions. Their intention for counseling is cultivating a space in which the client feels heard and seen. Jimmy enjoys making nail art, drinking tea, and spending time with their chosen family.

Brady Smithemail:  bradys1@wustl.edu (non-confidential)

Brady Smith is a graduate student at the Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis, concentrating in mental health with a specialization in working alongside adolescents and college students. He previously earned his bachelor's degree in Kinesiology (also known as Exercise & Sport Science) with a minor in Psychology from Queens University of Charlotte in North Carolina. Brady also is part of a national research study that provides online services to college students struggling with mental illness. He makes sure to tailor his work to best support each students' needs that he always works with by promoting a positive attitude!

Brady's free time hobbies include being an avid sports enthusiast (both playing and watching - especially rugby!), reading, doing mindfulness activities, playing both board and video games, and learning more about the people around him.