Meet Our Staff

The Center for Play Therapy is staffed by counseling department professors, doctoral students, a brilliant office manager, hardworking undergraduate students, and volunteers (who we are very grateful for!). Below are some of the people that keep CPT going strong with a little reminder with our photos to remember how important it is to enter the child's world.


Nicki Allen

Hi, my name is Nicki, and I am a first year doctoral student in the Counseling program at the University of North Texas. I spent most of my life in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. I received my bachelor’s degree in child development and my master’s degree in counseling and development from Texas Woman’s University in Denton. I have utilized child-centered play therapy and expressive arts in my clinical experiences which include working at a non-profit agency with victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, at an inpatient hospital and a children’s hospital, at a university clinic, and in an elementary school. I am honored and excited to contribute to the advancement of play therapy with my position at CPT!

Damian McClintock

Damian McClintock 

Hello! My name is Damian McClintock and I am a second year doctoral student in the Counseling program at the University of North Texas. I was born and raised in Bakersfield, California. I received my Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and my Master’s degree in Counseling at East Tennessee State University. During my Master’s program, I completed a year-long internship at the Children’s Advocacy Center of Sullivan County. My clinical and research interests include: Play therapy with children who have been abused or neglected, filial therapy, and couple therapy. I am ecstatic to be working here at the Center for Play Therapy where I have the opportunity to learn and to advance the field of counseling with children and families. 

Alyssa SwanAlyssa Swan

Hi. I’m Alyssa and I am currently a third year doctoral student in the Counseling program at University of North Texas. I am originally from central Illinois. I have my bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Sociology from Olivet Nazarene University and my master’s degree in Clinical Counseling from Eastern Illinois University. My past clinical experiences include working in a hospital, children’s group home, and university counseling center. My clinical and research interests include: play therapy, filial therapy, expressive arts, and working with clients across the lifespan. I'm so thankful to be a part of Center for Play Therapy and work with children and families everyday. 

Gustavo Bárcenas Jaimez

Gustavo Bárcenas Jaimez

Hola! I’m Gustavo. I’m from Mexico where I was born and raised. I have a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in Psychology. I moved to Denton last year to pursue my doctoral studies. This is actually my fourth year as a doctoral student here at the University of North Texas. I feel passionate about helping children through their most natural language: play. My clinical and research interests include play therapy with Latino children and pre-adolescents in the U. S. I am also very passionate about promoting play therapy in Mexico and other Latin American countries.