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Counseling Program Faculty
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Counseling Program Faculty

 ELC Counseling Faculty

ELC Counseling Program Faculty (left to right): Dr. Samir Patel, Dr. Rebecca Pender
Dr. Susana Contreras Bloomdahl, Dr. Alan Bakes


Counseling Program Coordinator 

Dr. Samir H. Patel, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Counselor Education
3218 Alexander Hall, Murray, KY 42071



Samir H. Patel, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the counseling program and earned his doctorate in Counselor Education from the University of Central Florida in 2010. He is the current president of the Kentucky Association for Counselor Education and Supervision. Research interests include (a) the promotion of evidence-based practices in counselor education, (b) exploring outcome factors of the supervisory working alliance, and (c) improving treatment outcomes for juvenile sex offenders. Dr. Patel's Vitae

Dr. Alan Bakes, Ph.D., LPCC
Associate Professor of Counselor Education
3228 Alexander Hall, Murray, KY 42071


Alan Bakes has been teaching counselor education at Murray State University since 2005 and holds a doctorate in Counselor Education and Counseling (Ph.D.) and a Master's of Counseling (M.Coun.) from Idaho State University. He is primarily responsible for teaching individual and group counseling skills, career counseling, and counseling ethics, as well as supervising practicum and internship. Professionally, he has provided personal counseling and career counseling at both university and small community counseling settings. Areas of scholarly interest include counselor supervision, career development and counseling skill training. Dr. Bakes' Vitae

School Counseling Program Coordinator
Dr. Susana Contreras Bloomdahl, Ph.D., NCC
Associate Professor of Counselor Education
3246 Alexander Hall, Murray, KY 42071


Susana Contreras Bloomdahl, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the counseling program at Murray State University. She has earned her doctorate in Counselor Education from the University of Arkansas in 2007. Originally from El Salvador but raised in South Louisiana, Dr. Bloomdahl has knowledge and experience in cultural diversity issues. She has worked with the minority populations within the school systems of New Orleans, Louisiana and with the immigrant student populations in Northwest Arkansas. Her areas of expertise are in Multicultural Counseling and School Counseling. Dr. Bloomdahl's Vitae 


Practicum & Internship Coordinator
Dr. Rebecca Pender, Ph.D., LPCC, NCC
Assistant Professor of Counselor Education
3220 Alexander Hall, Murray, KY 42071


Rebecca Pender received her Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Counseling from Idaho State University and her M.S.Ed, in Community Counseling and Marriage, Couple, and Family Counseling at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. Before joining the faculty at Murray State University, she worked as a counselor with children, adolescents, and adults at Family Services Alliance of Southeast Idaho, a small organization that facilitates services for domestic violence and sexual assault survivors. Over this past summer, she worked with the H Group of Illinois providing crisis counseling services and assessments. Her scholarly and research interests include mental health counseling, play therapy, marriage, couple and family counseling, trauma and crisis work, group work, and supervision. Rebecca currently serves as the Practicum and Internship Coordinator for the Counseling Program. Specialty Areas: Play Therapy, Crisis and Trauma, Substance Abuse, Diagnosis and Treatment Planning, Marriage, Couple and Family Counseling, Group Counseling. Dr. Pender's Vitae


Counseling Services Coordinator 

Dr. Kristin Douglas, Ph.D., LPCC
Assistant Professor of Counselor Education
3242 Alexander Hall, Murray, KY 42071


Kristin Douglas is an Assistant Professor in Counselor Education. She presently teaches Internship and Human Development courses. She is also the Counseling Clinic Coordinator of the Assessment and Counseling Center, an MSU training facility for clinical mental health counselors-in-training. Kristin has been a practicing clinician for 16 years and although she has worked in agency counseling with children, adolescents, adults, and the elderly, most of her experience comes from working in college counseling centers. She is a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, a National Certified Counselor, and is Board Certified in Biofeedback. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Music from Brigham Young University. She has two Master’s degrees, one in Music from Brigham Young University, and one in Counseling Psychology and Counselor Education from the University of Colorado-Denver.  Kristin recently graduated with her doctoral degree in Counselor Education from University of Wyoming.  Her research and scholarly interests include: (a) understanding the sociocultural challenges and mental health needs of populations experiencing disenfranchised grief; (b) creativity in the personal and professional development of counselors-in-training, counselors, and counselor educators; and (c) the duoethnography research methodology and its applications to the counseling profession. Dr. Douglas's Vitae

Counselor Education Program Advisory Board


Amy Washington
Past President
West Kentucky Mental Health Counseling

Adrienne Hubbard
Missions Administrator
Heartland Worship Center
Catherine Sames
School Counselor
Southwest Elementary School

Tonya Brockwell
School Counselor
Hickman County School

Mindy Rose
School Counselor
Fulton High School

Jasmine Young
School Counseling

Jonathan Durr
Clinical Mental Health Counseling


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