Meet Our Team

Tevya Zukor, Ph.D., CGP

Licensed Clinical Psychologist

Education: Ph.D. Clinical Psychology, George Mason University, MA Clinical Psychology, George Mason University, BS Psychology, James Madison University.

Dr. Zukor is excited to be a part of the University of Mary Washington community and continue his work in college counseling administration and providing services to university students.  He completed his doctorate in Clinical Psychology at George Mason University and completed his internship and post-doctoral work at The Thomas E. Cook Counseling Center at Virginia Tech. He is a Certified Group Psychotherapist (CGP) and is passionate about group, supervision, and training. His professional interests include intimate interpersonal relationships, trauma recovery, grief & loss issues, and crisis management. Dr. Zukor utilizes an interpersonal and integrative approach in his work with students with the goal of developing awareness of patterns in relationships, increasing coping skills, and developing a healthy lifestyle.

Tev’s Favorite, Fun 80’s Movies:

  1. The Princess Bride (1987)
  2. The Neverending Story (1984)
  3. Ghostbusters (1984)
  4. Back to the Future (1985)
  5. Gremlins (1984)


Melissa Palguta, Psy.D.
Staff Therapist

Education: Psy.D. & MA from University of Indianapolis; BS from University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Melissa is delighted to be part of the University of Mary Washington community and to continue her experience working with college students.  She completed her internship at George Mason University Counseling & Psychological Services Center.  She enjoys working in a variety of functions and with a wide range of issues, but she has a particular interest in working with trauma survivors, as well as with diversity and social justice-related issues.  She is a strong ally of the LGBTTQQIAAP community and she enjoys exploring the strengths and concerns of this group through her work.  She primarily works from a cognitive-behavioral perspective, providing students with concrete skills and support to aid them in overcoming personal difficulties and in improving their quality of life.  She takes a collaborative approach to treatment, working with her clients to establish a treatment dynamic and therapy goals that work best for them.

Melissa’s Top Feel-Good Movies:

  1. Noises Off
  2. Hidden Figures
  3. Soap Dish
  4. Blame it on the Bellboy
  5. A&E version of Pride and Prejudice (warning, this one is VERY long)
  6. Inside Out
  7. Princess Bride


Julia Faett, M.Ed., NCC
Staff Counselor, Resident in Counseling

Education: M.Ed. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from William & Mary; BA in Psychology from American University

Julia is very excited to be a member of the Talley Center team.  Before joining the Talley Center, she interned at a state psychiatric hospital while completing her master’s degree.  Julia also has experience counseling individuals in community corrections.  She greatly enjoys the college student population, and her goal in working with students is to be a strong source of support and a facilitator for growth.  Julia takes a Person-Centered approach combined with Motivational Interviewing and CBT when working with clients.  She has experience working with depression, anxiety, substance use issues, relational difficulties, and psychotic disorders.  In her spare time, Julia enjoys spending time with family and friends, reading, cooking, and speaking French with other francophiles.

Julia’s Top Movies:

  1. Les Intouchables
  2. Blind Date (2015)
  3. The Imitation Game
  4. Knives Out


Paola Garcia, Psy.D.

Staff Therapist

Education: Psy.D. & MS in Clinical Psychology from Ponce Health Sciences University; BA in General Psychology from University of Puerto Rico in Cayey.

Dr. Paola Garcia, or Dr. P for short, is excited to start her journey as a college therapist for the Talley Center and the UMW community.  As a resident of the Fredericksburg/ Spotsy area, she wants to serve her community and especially open the door for bilingual services in the area. Paola is both an English and Spanish speaker, who was raised and born in Puerto Rico. She completed her internship at Central State Hospital, a state psychiatric hospital, and then worked as a Psychology Associate for a Private Practice.  Paola enjoys working with a variety of populations but has a particular interest in working with diversity, self-esteem, and acceptance/ adjustment issues. She also has a great interest in working with issues relating to skin conditions such as keloids, which she herself has. She mostly works from an Integrative Psychotherapy approach and mostly integrates CBT and Mindfulness skills. When it comes to therapy she tailors her treatment to the needs, goals and interests of the client using a dynamic, collaborative, and creative approach. She has experience working with mood and anxiety disorders, self-esteem issues, and adjustment and acceptance difficulties. When she is not at work, Paola enjoys time with her family, cooking, and watching movies and series.

Paola’s Top Four Feel-Good Movies:

  1. Wonder
  2. Frozen
  3. Inside out
  4. Anatasia


Jared Grigg, MA

Staff Counselor, Trauma Specialist

Education: BA in Psychology, BA in Spanish (Baylor University); MA in Clinical Psychology (University of Mississippi)

Jared considers it a privilege to work with the students of UMW and help them overcome their challenges in pursuit of their goals.  A native of Tulsa, OK, Jared earned a double major at Baylor University in Psychology and Spanish, before entering graduate school for Clinical Psychology at the University of Mississippi.  He completed his pre-doctoral internship at Southeast Louisiana Veterans Health Care System in New Orleans, LA before receiving a commission as a Lieutenant in the US Navy.  Jared was stationed at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth, VA working as a therapist and medical research oversight officer.  His clinical and research interests include trauma, PTSD treatment, assessment, and outcome-based systems research.  He uses a cognitive behavioral approach to therapy that prioritizes problem-solving strategies and personal strengths.

Jared’s Top Feel-Good Movies:

  1. Father of the Bride
  2. Moana
  3. Legends of the Fall
  4. Forrest Gump
  5. A River Runs Through It


Amira Niori, Psy.D.

Mental Health Coordinator/Staff Psychologist

Education: Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology and MA in Psychology from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology, and MA in Counseling with a concentration in community and agency and BA Psychology from Hampton University

Amira is thrilled to be a part of the Talley Center team again. She enjoyed being an extern and working with UMW students so much that she returned to the Talley Center team as a staff psychologist. Amira completed her internship at the University of Nevada, Reno Counseling Service Center. She also has experience in other settings and forms of treatment, such as; inpatient, private practice, in-home therapy, and case management. Amira enjoys working with the college population and supporting students in such an important developmental time. She has experience with trauma, depression, anxiety, other mood disorders, autism spectrum disorder, personality disorders, and psychotic disorders. Amira tends to be collaborative when working with students as her approach to therapy is to meet the student where they’re at. Consequently, Amira is integrative in the type of therapy interventions that she uses. Amira is also trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). Amira is a new mommy and enjoys spending time with her son when she is away from the office.

Amira’s Top Four Feel-Good Movies:

  1. School Daze
  2. The Princess and the Frog
  3. Home Alone 2
  4. House Party


Debbie Huff
Office Manager

Debbie is excited to be a part of the team at the Talley Center at the University of Mary Washington as the Office Manager. During the academic year, she will be working in the Lee Hall location and assisting the UMW community as well as providing support to the staff. Debbie is a lifelong resident of VA, and in her free time, she enjoys spending time with her friends and family.

Debbie’s Top Five Feel-Good Movies:

  1. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
  2. Some Kind of Wonderful
  3. The Notebook
  4. Big
  5. The Breakfast Club

Nicole Hicks

Administrative Assistant


Nicole is excited to join the team at the Talley Center. She spent the last 6 years working in the elementary school system and it was a rewarding and wonderful experience. She is very excited about following her passion and serving the college community in her new position. Nicole is from New York but is a country girl at heart. In her spare time, she loves to take walks, trips to the mountains, reading, listening to music, and spending quality time with her husband, family, and friends.

 Nicole’s top five feel-good movies

  1. The Ten Commandments
  2. Finding Nemo
  3. Love Story
  4. Brian Song
  5. War Room






Dvon Maurer, QMHP-A/C

Education M.A. from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology.

Dvon is excited to join the Talley Center Student Counseling Center Team and honored to continue her doctoral education in clinical psychology as an advanced extern at the University of Mary Washington. She enjoys working with human beings of all ages and walks of life. She is particularly passionate about working with anxiety, depression, substance abuse, and crisis related concerns; in addition to being passionate about working with managing chronic illness and mental health concerns. Although, Dvon operates from an integrative approach to therapy, she is greatly influenced by cognitive-behavioral therapy, solution-focused approaches, and existential perspectives.
During her spare time, Dvon enjoys exercising, watching a good TV series, trying new foods, going for walks by the water, getting manicures and pedicures, and spending time with loved ones.

Couldn’t think of movies… a TV show person…Top 5 feel good shows:

1. Dave Chapelle
2. Schitts Creek
3. Family Guy
4. American Dad
5. Charlie Brown

Susan McAlister, B.A.

Education: B. S. Psychology and Life Coaching from Liberty University

Susan is excited to join the fabulous team at UMW’s Talley Center for Counseling Services for her Internship. Susan is a graduate student at Liberty University pursuing a Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. She has spent many years working with teens and young adults in various areas and loves this demographic as they are usually open and honest, willing to seek out answers to their issues which includes better ways to function through counseling. Susan’s goal is to one day use a pet therapy assistant in her work with teens/young adults as a way to ease the anxiety so many have with seeking help for difficult life issues. Currently, Susan is learning and exploring the different therapeutic modalities with a focus on mastering Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) as a primary lens to view the various client presentations. Other modalities of interest include: Individual Psychology which takes into account the uniqueness of each client, Person-centered theory which helps clients to overcome negative feedback or impressions from their past to see their true intrinsic worth, and finally psychoeducation because “you can’t know, what you don’t know”, (Jonathan Raymond). Ultimately, Susan understands the importance of an honest and open relationship with her clients and her goal is to be open and empathetic with her clients and collaboratively find modalities that will work best with each individual. Long walks with her husband and 10 month old black lab, hiking, swimming, sitting by the fire pit on a cool evening with family and friends, gardening, decorating, coffee-just coffee, coffee with friends, and a great book or movie are things Susan enjoys.

Susan’s 80’s Feel-Good Movies

  1. Princess Bride
  2. Pretty in Pink
  3. Breakfast Club
  4. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
  5. Top Gun/Beverly Hills Cops

Dymond Booth, M.A.

Education: M.A. in Clinical Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology

Dymond is ecstatic to join the team at the Talley Center. She is a doctoral student at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology in Washington, D.C. and is working towards her PsyD in clinical psychology. She enjoys working with clients of all ages; however, she is particularly passionate about working with trauma, dissociative disorders, depression, and anxiety-related concerns. Although Dymond prefers an integrative approach to therapy, she is greatly informed by cognitive-behavioral and psychodynamic perspectives. She believes that a strong, therapeutic rapport is an essential component to success in therapy and aims to ensure that her clients feel welcomed and accepted while working together to achieve a sense of holistic wellness, peace, and joy. When not at the Talley Center or busy with school work, Dymond enjoys cross-fit training, dancing, surfing, and writing poetry.

Dymond’s Feel-Good Movies:

  1. Jurassic Park (all series, 1993 – 2018)
  2. The Meg (2018)
  3. Monster-in-Law (2005)
  4. Hobbs & Shaw (2019)
  5. Moana (2016)


Brande Evans, M.S.

Education: M.S. Social Psychology from Tiffin University

Brande is excited to be a part of the team at the University of Mary Washington Talley Center. She is a third-year doctoral student at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology working towards her degree in clinical psychology. Brande is particularly interested in working with young adults with personality disorders, anxiety, and substance use issues. As a new trainee, she is still exploring her therapeutic style, however, she is greatly influenced by the cognitive-behavioral and existential perspectives. During her spare time, Brande enjoys golfing, skiing, reading, hiking, and spending time with friends and family.



Brande’s Top Five Feel-Good Movies:

  1. The King’s Speech
  2. The Pursuit of Happyness
  3. Bridesmaids
  4. Space Jam
  5. The Parent Trap


Kim Palmer, B.A.

Education: B.A. in Counseling Psychology, B.A. in Theology-Life Pacific University

Kim is enthusiastic about joining the Talley Center Team at the University of Mary Washington for her Practicum and Internship. Kim is a Clinical Mental Health and Counseling graduate student at Liberty University and is elated to be near the finish line of her graduate quest. Kim is fervent in her pursuits to empower trauma survivors and finds fulfillment in supporting adults with anxiety disorder, acceptance issues, depression and dissociative disorder challenges. While Kim finds joy in working with a multitude of ages, she finds gratification in investing in young adults, as she views this stage of life as monumental towards establishing and securing identity. Kim is a believer in embracing our authentic self and feels that this is an essential part of building active empathy which translates into her therapeutic approach and client rapport. While Kim is still in the process of discovering her preferred clinical approach, she leans towards eclectic integrative care which uses multiple therapeutic tools or approaches to meet the client where they are within their need. Kim embraces Client-Centered Psychotherapy, Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy, and an undercurrent of Developmental Psychology. Kim’s professional goals are to move towards a Doctorate in Neuropsychology after the completion of her Master’s Degree and focus on holistic treatment within the landscape of trauma and resilience. With her free time, Kim enjoys cooking/baking, gardening, kayaking, fishing, outdoors, dancing, and time with her family.

Kim’s Feel-Good Movies are:

  1. The Greatest Showman
  2. Tommy Boy
  3. The Bourne Series
  4. Moana
  5. Dumb and Dumber
  6. A tie between: Princess Bride and Monty Python and the Holy Grail