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Kimberly Williams Collins, PhD, New Counseling Psychologist for University Health Services at UTHSC

Kimberly Willams Collins, PhD, who will serve as counseling psychologist with University Health Services, feels it is an honor to work with students and faculty. (Photo by Thurman Hobson/UTHSC)

Kimberly Williams Collins, PhD, MS, has been hired by the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) to serve as counseling psychologist with University Health Services to assist with student and employee mental and behavioral health, and support various programs to enhance the overall campus experience.

Most recently assistant director and director of training at the Counseling Center at the University of Memphis, Dr. Williams Collins brings extensive experience in counseling, as well as in supervision of postdoctoral fellows, and in providing crisis support and intervention.

Recruited by Ken Brown, JD, MPA, PhD, FACHE, executive vice chancellor and chief operations officer at UTHSC, Dr. Williams Collins will also work with Student Academic Support Services and Inclusion and with the behavioral intervention team on campus. She began working at UTHSC April 10.

“Working with students is an honor, because students today face immense pressure to achieve, and often do so with varying degrees of support. To be able to provide support and empower clients is always a privilege,” Dr. Williams Collins said.

“In terms of those individuals who serve the university and its students, the ones in the trenches who make it possible for the university to meet its mission, they also can benefit from support,” she said. “I believe that having a space where you can be open, honest, and make healthy informed decisions for your life is incredibly important. Everyone deserves this type of support, and I look forward to the opportunity to provide that at UTHSC.”

Universities across the country are becoming increasingly aware of the need for adequate mental health counseling and support services on campus in order to provide a safe environment and ensure well-being and success for all. At the same time, on-campus counseling centers nationwide are reporting a growing demand for such services, and are strengthening resources by adding counselors, group sessions, and collaborating with services available in the community.

Dr. Williams Collins was employed at the Counseling Center at the University of Memphis since May 2009. She provided individual, couples, group, and crisis therapy for students and faculty. She also has extensive experience in training and outreach on diversity and multiculturalism, consent, intimate partner violence, healthy relationships, and trauma-informed interviewing.

She received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Agnes Scott College, and master’s and PhD degrees in counseling psychology from the University of Memphis.

The addition of a counseling psychologist to University Health Services offers a higher level of service for all on campus, Dr. Brown said.

“We are committed to ensuring that our students, faculty, and staff have all the resources they need to be healthy, physically and mentally. Dr. Williams Collins has the temperament, training and background to be a key player in that mission,” he said.

“I am always attracted to opportunities to advocate, support and even challenge individuals to be better and healthier,” Dr. Williams Collins said. “My personal and professional purpose seems to align so very well with the mission of UTHSC and the vision put forth by Dr. Ken Brown. I am truly excited to join UTHSC.”