CAPS brings new staff on board amid COVID-19 pandemic

Nine mental health professionals and two doctoral interns from different mental health backgrounds joined the CAPS office to support students during COVID-19.

Photo+by+Alex+Liscio.+

Photo by Alex Liscio.

Neal Sinha, Contributing Writer

The FAU Counseling and Psychological Services Center (CAPS), had an additional eleven mental health professionals join their team at the beginning of the Spring semester.

“With the support of many stakeholders, we have been able to increase our clinical staff over the past year. It takes a considerable amount of time to recruit, hire, and onboard clinicians. We began this process before the pandemic impacted the nation and the world,” explained Dr. Katherine Kominars, director of CAPS.

She describes working during COVID as “challenging.” The top mental health issues that she is seeing within the FAU community are anxiety, depression, family problems, and academic issues.

“The COVID pandemic has significantly increased stress levels for college students. Academic concerns are on many students’ minds which may account for recent survey data about ‘procrastination’ being particularly problematic for many since the beginning of the pandemic,” Kominars continued.


With over twenty-five years of experience and her most recent publication credits in chapters in a First Year in College Textbook – “On Time” and “Stress, Stressing, and Stressed Out,” Kominars has vast knowledge about working with students.

“At CAPS, we have a highly qualified multi-disciplinary team of mental health professionals who have particular expertise working with young adults. Multicultural competence is (a) necessary to effectively assist our students with their concerns. To that end, we strive to have the diversity of our

staff mirror the diversity of our students.”

CAPS services include, but are not limited to, individual therapy, group therapy, counseling, workshops, and support groups. For students coping with crisis situations, CAPS is also available for crisis sessions, consultations, crisis response, and treatment recommendations. 

They will also direct students to off-campus services if needed. Their services are free to FAU students.

New staff member, Dr. Greg Horn, is passionate about working with first-generation students, who are more likely to provide financial support to their family in the future, in addition to staying closer to home.

“What I really enjoy about working with first-generation college students is being on their side as they discover, and really start to believe, that they belong here,” said Horn.

Dr. Corey Safra, Psy.D. is a licensed psychologist who comes to FAU this year after five years of experience working in college counseling centers. His career in college counseling began when he attended graduate school at the University of Central Florida. 

“With college counseling, seeing students who think they have a problem, who want to grow or change in some way is very different in terms of feeling internally rewarded, and like I was making a difference,” explains Safra.

For FAU students to maintain their personal well-being during the COVID-19 epidemic, Safra suggests, “It’s important to not isolate yourself, socialize and interact with your friends; whether it be in-person, over Zoom, or over the phone.” 

“Exercise, take a walk, read, or waste some time on social media,” said Safra.

To find more information about CAPS and CAPS services, go to https://www.fau.edu/counseling/. For information about CAPS staff members, visit https://www.fau.edu/counseling/about/staff.php.

CAPS Crisis Line can be reached at 561-297-3540

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Neal Sinha is a contributing writer for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected]