Maricopa Emergency Management System Alert

ATTENTION STUDENTS: Currently CGCC's services continue to be available via phone, email, and online. As we prepare for our Fall 2021 classes more services will be available face-to-face.


Meet the Counseling Faculty

Our Counseling Faculty is a staff of highly trained professionals with years of experience, ready to help you address life-management issues related to your college experience.

Residential Counseling Faculty

Rene Barrios

Rene Barrios, Ed.D.
CGCC Counseling Faculty
Bradshaw 106N

Dr. Barrios has a long history of studying and working in the education field since leaving Nogales, Arizona, to begin his college studies at Arizona Western College in Yuma. After completing his Associate of Arts degree at AWC, he went on to complete both his B.A in Secondary Education (Spanish and History), and his M.Ed in Counseling at the University of Arizona. Dr. Barrios began his counseling career at two local high schools, Apache Junction HS and Chandler HS, before moving on to his present counseling position as Counseling Faculty here at CGCC. He completed his Ed.D. in Higher Education at Arizona State University with a focus on Student Affairs Administration. 

As Counseling Faculty, Dr. Barrios can be found teaching CPD150 Strategies for College Success and CPD160 Introduction to Multiculturalism, or you may catch his enthusiasm when he delivers workshops on such topics as goal setting, reducing test anxiety, or overcoming procrastination. While humorous and patient in his teaching style, he takes seriously his efforts to teach students the importance of self-responsibility and interdependency while managing the demands of the college experience. As a faculty counselor in a college setting, René encourages students to take advantage of his expertise in a variety of areas where they can use some assistance, such as choosing a career or major, dealing with a loss, reducing the effects of test anxiety, being unable to find a solution to a problem, or having a hard time making a decision on a personal matter. No reason to tackle these or other personal issues alone when we are here to help you. 

"Do as your mother tells you." -Felix Barrios, my father- 

Nikki Nieset

Nikki Nieset, Ph.D. 
CGCC Counseling Faculty
Bradshaw 104N

In addition to teaching courses in our new Counseling & Applied Psychological Sciences major, Dr. Nikki Nieset works with CGCC students to help them overcome challenges and meet their personal, academic, and career goals.

Dr. Nieset earned her M.Ed. in Counselor Education and her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology, both from Arizona State University. She developed a passion for working with college students, both inside and outside the classroom, and has taught a range of undergraduate and graduate courses for nearly 20 years. Across different levels, one theme in her courses is an emphasis on helping each student discover and find success in pursuing their own direction in life. In counseling students, Nikki enjoys helping individuals manage stress and overcome anxiety; engage in career exploration and vocational development; navigate major life transitions; optimize academic functioning using a strengths-based approach; and provide support for our multicultural and LGBTQ+ students.

“Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly.” - proverb 

Ryan Adams

Ryan Adams, Ph.D.
CGCC Counseling Faculty - Service Lead
Bradshaw 106N

Originally from the Chicago metro area, Dr. Adams moved to the Sonoran Desert to attend Arizona State University where he received his M.Ed. in Counselor Education and Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology. He then lived in the Washington, D.C. metro area for nine years, teaching and providing counseling services at a variety of higher education institutions. Dr. Adams was thrilled to return to Arizona, working on staff at Chandler-Gilbert. 

As Counseling Faculty, Dr. Adams is passionate about teaching and providing guidance around strategies for student success and academic/career exploration. He teaches the CPD 150: Strategies for College Success courses and CLASI workshops, which motivate students to identify and harness their own personal strengths as they develop the skills necessary to pursue their academic and career passions. Additionally, Dr. Adams provides counseling support to students in the areas of academic, career, or personal planning. In doing so, he takes a person-centered approach in assisting students through their own motivational enhancement, self-exploration, and problem-solving.

“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” – Aesop

Audra Wolfe

Audra Wolfe, M.C.
CGCC Counseling Faculty - Academic Lead
Bradshaw 104S

Before joining the Counseling program full time, Audra Wolfe worked at Chandler-Gilbert Community College as an Adjunct Instructor, beginning in 2007, teaching over 20 semesters of Counseling Personal Development classes. During this time, she also worked as a high school guidance counselor, concentrating on student success in the area of career and college readiness. Prior to that, Audra had a wonderful opportunity to consult with a group of psychologists performing various counseling responsibilities, including training a culturally diverse population of counselors in England, Lebanon and Australia.

Professor Wolfe earned her Associate of Arts degree from Mesa Community College, and both her Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Masters of Counseling from Arizona State University. Being an alumni of a Maricopa Community College, she has first-hand knowledge of the student experience, and the challenges and opportunities of transitioning to a university. 

Audra is enthusiastic about student success and has an extensive background working with them to help overcome obstacles and reach their goals. She enjoys providing counseling support to students in the areas of career exploration, anxiety and stress reduction, communication skills and personal development. 

“Live life as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” - Gandhi 


Virginia Edwards, M.C.
CGCC Counseling Faculty
Engle 209

Virginia Edwards graduated from ASU with a B.A. in Bilingual Education and a Masters in Counseling. Even though she is a proud Sun Devil, she is equally proud of her long family line of Yuma High School Criminals. Yes, the mascot is a Criminal and the reason has to do with the Yuma Territorial Prison. Interesting story if you want to research it.

Virginia has been at CGCC for twenty years. She first taught English classes to second language learners wanting to improve their English skills in an academic setting. She was also a Division Chair for six years and has participated in various college wide initiatives. She now focuses on the College Success courses, CPD115 and 150 and the Multicultural class, CPD160.

"Grant me courage to serve others; For in service there is true life." Cesar Chavez

Adjunct Counseling Faculty

Kirra Wong

Kirra Wong, M.A.
Adjunct Counseling Faculty

Originally from California, Kirra began her college career at Contra Costa Community College and transferred to the University of California at Los Angeles where she earned a BA in Sociology with a specialization in Asian American Studies. She received a MA degree in Counseling Psychology with a concentration in Integral Counseling from the California Institute of Integral Studies. Attending community college after high school was a period of self discovery that she believes was a significant time in her life. She is passionate to help others in their own personal journeys as students identify how they will share their strengths, talents and skills in the community through their educational and career goals.

Kirra has experience providing counseling in educational and clinical settings working with individuals, groups and families. Her interests include yoga, mindfulness and hiking. She utilizes a holistic approach to help students realize their full potential.

“The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.” —Ralph Waldo Emerson


Yasi Parsi

Yasaman Parsi, M.C.
Adjunct Counseling Faculty

Yasaman earned her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a minor in Women Studies, a Master’s degree in Counseling and a Master’s degree in Secondary Education, Curriculum and Instruction with a Teaching Certificate from Arizona State University.

Yasaman has worked as an educator and counselor with individuals, families and groups in a variety of higher education institutions and community agencies.

Yasaman believes awareness is the first step towards creating change in your life and is dedicated to helping students gain a higher level of awareness and understanding in terms of their career, academics and personal experiences in order to not only survive, but thrive in their educational endeavors.

“To pay attention, this is our endless and proper work.” ~ Mary Oliver


Amy Boylan, M.C.
Adjunct Counseling Faculty

Amy has resided in Arizona for many years and received her Bachelor of Social Work Degree and her Master of Counseling Degree from Arizona State University. Prior to joining the team at Chandler Gilbert Community College, Amy worked with college students in other Arizona settings both at the University and Community College levels. Amy believes that college offers a unique experience for personal and educational growth. She is passionate about encouraging students to seek out various learning opportunities and services available to them at the college to help them get the most out of their college experience while they work toward achieving future goals.

In addition to working with students Amy has provided counseling services to people of all ages in a wide variety of settings. She is particularly interested in compassion and mindfulness related studies.

“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.” ~ the Dalai Lama