The Counseling Psychology Program at Western Michigan University is proud to host the 31st Annual Great Lakes Regional Counseling Psychology Conference on April 13-14, 2018, in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

We are excited to be ushering in the fourth decade of the longest-running annual regional conference of the Society of Counseling Psychology. The Great Lakes Region holds the distinction of being the only region to continue fulfilling the recommendation of holding a yearly conference that emerged from the third National Counseling Psychology Conference held in Atlanta, Georgia in 1987. The first conference was held the very next year in 1988 at The Ohio State University and the rest, they say, is history! Over the years, the Great Lakes Regional Conference has served an important role in the socialization and mentorship of students who have enjoyed benefits derived from presenting and participation, professional networking and being a part of conference planning and execution.

The theme of the 2018 conference is “Respectful Dialogues and Beyond: What Are We Doing?” The theme celebrates counseling psychology’s role in engaging in difficult conversations, often around challenging topics and in times of controversy and great need, with an emphasis on doing. Reflecting the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’” we ask the question “What are we doing?” We welcome presentations that address innovative ways in which counseling psychologists and students in training are making a difference and seeking to have a positive impact in their communities, on our field and with underserved populations. The conference theme also echoes an initiative of our current American Psychological Association Division 17 President, Dr. Arpana G. Inman of Lehigh University, who will be a keynote speaker. We look forward to productive and respectful dialogues and a celebration of the good work we all are doing.

About the conference


The creation of regional counseling psychology conferences occurred at the 1987 third National Counseling Psychology Conference held in Atlanta, Georgia. This recommendation from the conference was made to encourage yearly regional counseling psychology conferences. As a result, the Executive Board of Division 17 (Counseling Psychology) decided that counseling psychology programs located in Indiana, Michigan and Ohio would constitute the Great Lakes Region. In 1988, the first Great Lakes Regional Counseling Psychology Conference was held at The Ohio State University. Since then, a number of institutions have hosted the conference. It is noteworthy that the Great Lakes Region is the only region to have continued to fulfill the recommendation emerging from the third National Counseling Psychology Conference. Over the years, hundreds of students have greatly benefited from presenting and participating in the Great Lakes Conference. In 2018, the Great Lakes Conference has expanded its membership to include the counseling psychology programs of the University of Louisville and Loyola University Chicago. These programs will host the conference in future years. We welcome these programs into the Great Lakes Conference family.

listing all of the conferences held by year, location and theme is available.


Conference co-chairs

Conference committee chairs


WMU counseling psychology faculty

Student Coordinators & Planners


Student coordinators: Anel Arias, Alex Houseknecht and Maisha Lassiter

Proposal and program

Student coordinator: Mike Evitts

Proposal reviewers: Sonia Amin, Maime Butler, Breezie Gibson, Kate Hibbard-Gibbons, Char Houben-Hop, Patrick Marcoux, Theresa Nutten, Ingrid Rauk, Kristin Roberts, Dawnielle Simmons, Michelle Stahl, Anné Stocker, Brian Stran and Hawi Wako

Registration, keynotes, pre-conference workshops, website, budget, continuing education

Student coordinators: Darrielle Allen, Maime Butler and Kristin Roberts

Social and hospitality

Student coordinators: Emma Westra and Michelle Stahl

Conference Volunteers

Sarah Akans

Darrielle Allen

Nicole Allen

Sonia Amin

Kyrai Antares

Anel Arias

Jessica Asperger

Michaela Bradley

Maime Butler

Jeannie Cole

Anthony Daniel




Breezie Gibson

Michael Evitts

Marc Green

Martha Golubski

Kate Hibbard-Gibbons

Jonathan Hooks

Char Houben-Hop

Alex Houseknecht

Maya Jordan

Maisha Lassiter

Ge Ma

Patrick Marcoux


Tiffany Marshall

Rihab Musa

Ingrid Rauk

Kristin Roberts

Michael Saltzman

Roxanna Almonacid de Sinn

Michelle Stahl

Anne’ Stocker

Emma Westra

Fengyu Yang

Farzana Zafreen



Contact Beverly Vandiver for any questions regarding the 2018 Great Lakes Regional Counseling Psychology Conference.