Counseling and Referrals

The Office of Spiritual Formation & Counseling Services (SF/CS) assists students and the families of married students in addressing a wide range of social and emotional issues. Students and their families are invited to call upon the HCHC community’s resources to define goals, develop strategies for change, and realize a greater understanding of self and others.

Counselors provide individual counseling, couple and family counseling, work with children, crisis intervention, and offer psycho-educational groups, support groups and workshops. The SF/CS office also maintains a list of referral options off campus. (For example, referrals are made for services such as psychiatric evaluation or medication consultation by providers off-campus.)

In case of an emergency, students, faculty and staff should always call 911, or go to the nearest Emergency Room, and then immediately contact an RA (Resident Assistant) or the Dean of Students at (617) 850-1297.

Students and their families can contact the general counseling number by calling (617) 850-1204, or they may call or directly email one of the counselors listed below.

What is Counseling?

Counseling is a collaborative process in which involves the development of a unique, confidential helping relationship. In the relationship, the counselor acts as a facilitator in helping the client to understand more accurately him/herself and the world around him/her. Individuals are helped to understand their feeling and behaviors, their relationship with others, and their particular situation, choices, and decisions.

Discussion of whatever is important and relevant enables individuals to grow toward a greater freedom in making mature choices and taking responsible action in their lives, relationships and studies.

Why do students come for counseling?
Students and their families contact the SF/CS office seeking assistance with any of a variety of different matters:

  • Working on Healthy Life Styles
  • Low self-confidence
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Family Problems
  • Vocation, Purpose, Normal Developmental Problems
  • Sleeping/Eating Problems
  • Making better decisions
  • Time management/Studying more effectively
  • Relationship Issues

Meet the Staff

Rev. Nicholas Krommydas, DMin, Pastoral Care Director
(617) 850-1289,

Bob Murray is a licensed psychologist. He has over 30 years of experience as a counselor and professor in higher education. He is a native of Boston, attended Boston College, and completed his doctorate at Boston University. He and his wife Joan have three children. One is a graduate of the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester and two are are current college students.
(617) 850-1205,

Betty Paganis is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW) with 26 years experience working with students, faculty, and parents in school settings. In a private practice setting, she has worked with young adults and families facing a wide variety of social and emotional challenges. Since 1992, she has been extensively involved in missions activity both locally and abroad, participating on teams in Uganda, Mexico, and Alaska, and working as a founding member of Mission Team Chicago. Having married a man from Boston, she recently moved to this area from Chicago.
(617) 850-1206,

Ioana Popa is a psychiatrist with more than 22 years of experience in counseling, healing, and teaching. A graduate of the University of Rochester, NY, she has worked as a psychiatrist and therapist in multiple settings, including outpatient clinics, partial programs, hospitals, long-term programs for substance abuse, and private practice. She has taught for many years at the high school, middle school, and college levels, as well in church school settings. She often presents and teaches workshops in the community, and assists in training programs. She has had multiple administrative positions, from Lead Psychiatrist in the VA system to science department chair, Associate Dean of Academics, and Church School Director. Her vocation is in healing and teaching, helping people in their efforts to bring God’s light into the world. She is married, has four children, and lives in Boston.
(617) 850-1207,