Our Staff & Confidentiality
Brenda Lovstuen, Ph.D., Director
This is my nineteenth 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. One such opportunity is through being a certified instructor for the internationally known RAD (Rape Aggression Defense) Basic Self-Defense Program, which I co-teach with local police officers most semesters. 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 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.
Rachel Slezak, LMHC, Counselor
I am delighted to be returning to Cornell College for my third year as a counselor. While working together, you can expect a warm, inclusive, and creative environment. My approach to counseling tends to be solution-focused and strengths-based, meaning I help students identify existing strengths and resources to work towards goals. I specialize in issues related to anxiety and often use Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) techniques to identify thoughts, behaviors, and values that encourage action towards meaningful change. Sessions can also incorporate art therapy as a way to promote self-expression and deepen self-awareness. Other concerns addressed during counseling may include issues related to depression, trauma, grief, transitions, perfectionism, assertiveness, worry, family conflict, sexuality, self-esteem, relationship problems, and personal growth and development.
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 6:30 p.m. Monday - Thursday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Friday (weeks 1-3 of each block); and 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday - Wednesday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Thursday - Friday (week 4 of each block).