Our Staff & Confidentiality
Brenda Lovstuen, Ph.D., Director (she/her/hers)
This is my twenty-first year as Director of Counseling at Cornell, and I’m also a Cornell alum. I have worked with people of all ages but especially like working with college students and the multiple opportunities to do so here on a small campus. I am a licensed psychologist and a "generalist" (vs. a "specialist"), meaning I work with a wide range of concerns. Some of the concerns I work with most frequently include depression, anxiety, stress, grief and loss, relationships, sexual assault, academic problems, self-esteem, and assertiveness. I regularly use CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) and other approaches (e.g., humanistic, existential, feminist, multicultural, clinical EFT [tapping]), depending on the student and situation, am a certified aromatherapist, and am happy to meet with students regarding any mental health related issue and help them identify options and resources for resolving their concerns.
Karla Maria Steffens, LMSW, Counselor (she/her/hers)
Karla draws on twenty years of theatre teaching and directing to inform her work with individual students, couples, families and groups, taking a humanistic, intersectional, multicultural, feminist, strength-based approach that recognizes the importance and value of each person, meeting them where they are at in the present moment. She holds certifications in Drama and Play Therapy, AutPlay (Art Therapy with neuro-diverse individuals), TAC (Training in Adoption Competency), Sexual Assault and Domestic and Partner Violence, and uses a variety of approaches, including: CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy), Gestalt, Holistic, and Solution Focused Motivational Interviewing to assist students in addressing: depression, anxiety, grief, loss, self-harm, addiction, disordered eating and/or body concerns, trauma, abuse, sexual assault, academic concerns, gender identity, and relationship issues (Het and LGBTQIA+).
Carol Zerbe Enns, Ph.D., part-time volunteer Counselor
I am a licensed psychologist, former (retired) Professor of Psychology at Cornell College, and am now volunteering part-time at the Counseling Center as a staff Counselor. Although my past interactions with Cornell students have typically occurred in academic contexts, my priorities include understanding individuals from a holistic perspective and their lives outside the classroom. I am prepared to work with a range of concerns such as anxiety and stress, depression, relationship concerns, life planning and life transition issues, coping with crisis and trauma, loss and grief issues, identity concerns, and academic issues. My counseling approach is informed by meaning-focused psychotherapies as well as multicultural, feminist, and social justice approaches to psychotherapy. I also seek to use tools that are respectful of the worldviews and strengths of persons with whom I work and that support their resilience.
Miriam McConnell, B.S., Counseling Intern (she/her/hers)
I am a graduate student in my final semester of a Master’s program in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Messiah University. I enjoy working with students from various sociocultural backgrounds with a diversity of mental health needs. My primary areas of interests include anxiety, depression, stress management, trauma (including racial trauma), substance abuse, and multicultural issues, including those related to ethnicity, nationality, spirituality, gender, identity development, and military status.
Please note that the Counseling Center does not consider contact via e-mail as confidential communication. Additionally, staff members may not check e-mail with regularity or frequency, and do not access email outside of Counseling Center hours. You are welcome to e-mail staff members with questions about our services. However, be advised that your communication might not receive a timely response. For the most timely and confidential communication, or to schedule an appointment, please call the Counseling Center at (319) 895-4292; the Counseling Center is located in the Ebersole Building and is open when school is in session from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m Monday and Tuesday, and 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday - Friday.