Counseling Center Staff


Bob Samuels, Ph.D., Director

Bob received his undergraduate degree from Princeton University, majoring in Sociology with Certificates in Afro-American Studies and Science in Human Affairs.  He then went on to receive his M.S. and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Massachusetts/Amherst.  When not at work he spends his time breathing deeply, listening to spoken word poetry, and riding his motorcycle.

My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style. – Maya Angelou

Bob Samuels

Cory Clark, Ph.D., Assistant Director / Director of Training

Cory received his BA in Psychology & Social Sciences Interdisciplinary from SUNY Buffalo and his MA and PhD in Counseling Psychology from West Virginia University.  He enjoys being outdoors, kayaking, fishing, and spending time with my family and friends.

Love the life you live, Live the life you love. – Bob Marley

Cory Clark

Catherine Calise, LICSW, Substance Abuse Specialist

Catherine received her B.S. in Human Development and Family Relations and her Master’s in Social Work from the University of Connecticut and went on to acquire her license as an Independent Clinical Social Worker. Outside of work, Catherine enjoys being outdoors, taking walks, going to the beach, day trips, playing volleyball and being in the company of her family.

Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step. – Martin Luther King Jr.

Catherine Calise

Marge Franca-Terceira, Psy.D.

Marge Franca-Terceira

Alison Homan, M.A., CAGS, LMHC

Alison studied first in Australia for her B Ed. in Language and Literature before arriving in the U.S. to complete two graduate degrees in Counseling and Counselor Education from Rhode Island College. In between she traveled extensively and fell in love with exploring countries and cultures. The cultures and behaviors of animals also fascinate her. She loves her two cockatiels – her feathered friends.

Hope is a thing with feathers that perches on the soul. – Emily Dickinson

Alison Homan

Holly J. Nichols, LMHC

Holly received her B.A. in Women’s Studies and Psychology from the University of Rhode Island and her Masters of Counseling from Antioch University.  Holly enjoys spending time with her rescue dogs (including Samantha, her Pet Assisted Therapy Dog), organic vegetable gardening, being outside in nature, and time with family and friends.

I’m just like you – I want to be a good human being. I’m doing my best, and I’m working at it. – Maya Angelou

Holly Nichols

Rebecca Pearlson, PsyD

Becky received her B.A. in Psychology and Women’s Studies from Wheaton College. She went on to receive her M.A. and Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. She enjoys spending her free time baking, connecting with friends and family, and hanging out with her two rambunctious Bengal cats.

“You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.” – Jon Kabat-Zinn

Becky Pearlson

Warren Schwartz, PsyD

Warren received his B.A. in psychology from Skidmore College. He went on to receive his M.A. in experimental social psychology from the University of Missouri – St. Louis and his Psy.D. from the Illinois School of Professional Psychology. He enjoys spending time with friends and family, writing and playing music, and metal detecting / colonial relic hunting.

Perhaps everything terrible is, in its deepest being, something that needs our love. – Rainer Maria Rilke

Warren Schwartz

Michael T. Starkey, Ph.D.

Michael received his undergraduate and master’s degrees from the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs and his Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota. He really enjoys nature, riding his bike, reading, and existential psychology/philosophy.

If a way to the better there be, it lies in taking a full look at the worst. -Thomas Hardy

Michael Starkey


Kristen Besler, PsyD

Kristen received her BA in psychology and sociology from SUNY New Paltz, and her MS and PsyD in clinical psychology from Pacific University. In her free time, Kristen enjoys spending time with friends and family, painting, going to see live music, and being outside and in the mountains.

 “If you hold on to the handle, she said, it’s easier to maintain the illusion of control. But it’s more fun if you just let the wind carry you.” – Brian Andreas 

Kristen Besler


Clifton Berwise, MA

Clifton received his B.S. in psychology from Trinity College and his Master’s in psychology from the University of Rhode Island. He is currently a student in the Clinical Psychology PhD program at URI. Outside of school, he enjoys listening to music, trying new food and spending time with loved ones.

Our ability to grow is directly proportional to an ability to entertain the uncomfortable. – Twyla Tharp

Clifton Berwise

Cassie Cardoza, MA

Cassie received her BS in Psychology from the University of Central Florida and her Masters degree in Clinical Psychology from the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth. She is currently a student in the clinical Psy D Program at William James College.  When not at work or school, Cassie enjoys taking yoga and barre class, painting, and going on adventures.

Great things are done by a series of small things brought together –Vincent Van Gogh

Cassie Cardoza

Amanda Connerton, MA

Amanda received her BA in Psychology from URI in 2014.  She recently received her Masters in Clinical Psychology and is finishing up her PsyD at William James College.  In her spare time she enjoys running half marathons and spending time with her rescue dog, Dakota. 
“Always find time for the things that make you happy to feel alive.” – unknown 
Amanda Connerton


Cynthia Candon, BA

Cynthia received her BA in Sociology from the University of Rhode Island. In addition to her work at the Counseling Center, she enjoys entertaining her family and friends at home, traveling and attending theater and musical performances.  She also assists her family and friends with their real estate needs functioning as a Real Estate Broker.

You must be the change you wish to see in the world. – Gandhi

Cynthia Candon

Carolyn Perrone, BS

Carolyn received her B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Rhode Island. She enjoys her work helping others at the Counseling Center. She also likes walking outdoors, exercising, and spending time with family and friends.

Keep your eyes on the stars, and your feet on the ground.-Theodore Roosevelt

Carolyn Perrone
Think Big We Do

Copyright © 2018 University of Rhode Island.