Colleen Tennyson

What do I do at the Counseling Center?

My primary responsibility is to provide psychiatric assessment and treatment for students referred by Counseling Center counselors. When appropriate, I continue to monitor and manage medication adjustments for individual clients. My training provided exposure to various therapeutic and pharmacologic approaches so I am interested in the interplay of psychopharmacology and psychotherapy, and believe that combined treatment is superior to medication alone. I see students who may benefit from psychiatry, including those struggling with anxiety, mood instability, depression, trauma response, eating concerns, insomnia, cognitive difficulties, or disorganized thinking.

What's it like to work with me?

My approach tends to be direct and students often report that I ask a lot of questions. I am constantly considering how medical issues, genetic factors, stressors, and substance use may be contributing to an individual's experience. Thus, I approach each meeting with curiosity about a variety of factors, some of which may seem surprising to students.

What do I do at JMU outside of the Counseling Center?

While most of my time is spent in clinical care, I also have the privilege of caring for Francis our original animal-assisted therapy dog. While Francis has retired from his work at the Counseling Center, occasionally he returns to visit campus and gives some wet kisses and puppy love to students, faculty, and staff.

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