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Who We Are



Gaye Warthe

Associate Dean, Teaching and Learning Faculty of Health, Community and Education

Dr. Gaye Watson Warthe, RSW, is an Associate Dean, Teaching and Learning in the Faculty of Health, Community and Education at Mount Royal University, Calgary. Dr. Warthe has extensive practice experience including working with child protection, pregnant and parenting adolescents, education, and as a medical social worker at a children’s hospital. As a private consultant she contributed to the development and implementation of domestic violence screening protocols, was involved in establishing the domestic violence court in Calgary, and was the lead consultant on a Family and Sexual Violence Sector Review. Gaye is a principal investigator on a dating violence prevention project at Mount Royal called Stepping Up, she developed the Dating Relationship Scales to measure dating violence in young adults, and is the principal investigator in a multi-year dating violence prevalence study. Dr. Warthe serves on the Advisory Committee of Shift: The Project to End Domestic Violence and currently is on the steering committee for RESOLVE Alberta, is a member of the board with Discovery House Family Violence Prevention Society, and the board of Alberta Council of Women Shelters.


Patricia Kostouros

Associate Professor

Patricia is an Associate Professor at Mount Royal University in the Department of Child Studies and Social Work.  As a registered psychologist Patricia has an expertise in the areas of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Depression and Anxiety.  Prior to arriving at Mount Royal, Patricia held several administrative positions as a manager of both a youth shelter and a women's shelter. In addition, she was the executive director of a Women's residence dealing with mental health distress and addictions.  In particular, Patricia has worked to reduce violence in people's lives both in her private work and in her research areas. Patricia's research interests include Vicarious Trauma and Compassion Fatigue, the topic of her Master's thesis, and more recently her PhD thesis on the use of materials that depict suffering in the post-secondary classroom.  Her other interests are in the area of Intimate Partner Violence, and Practitioner Self-Care. Patricia has written about Post-Secondary Student Stress and Self-Care, Trauma and the Post-Secondary context, Mental Health Systems, and depictions of suffering and Curriculum Theory.  Patricia was a recipient of the Alberta Advanced Education Internationalization of the Teaching Learning Practice for 2007 for her development of international practicum and continues to act as a content advisor for the Children's Mental Health Certificate with the Continuing Education programs at Mount Royal University.  Patricia also holds an Instructional Associate position at the Graduate Centre for Applied Psychology with Athabasca university.


Cathy Carter-Snell

Associate Professor

Dr. Cathy Carter-Snell is a certified sexual assault nurse examiner and has worked clinically with victims of sexual assault and intimate partner violence. She developed and taught a number of courses on sexual assault and intimate partner violence and has a national program online to improve sexual assault services (EESAS). Her program of research is focused on prevention of violence and early effective intervention by professionals when it cannot be prevented. She is one of the co-founders of the Stepping Up program.


Michelle Chimenti

Stepping Up Project Coordinator

Michelle Chimenti, BSW, graduated from Dalhousie University in 2018, after completing her Social Work Diploma at Mount Royal University in 2016. Michelle is dedicated to the pursuit of strengths-based, anti-oppressive practice and community building through a systemic lens. With experience as a Resident Assistant at Dalhousie University, and as a former member of Enactus Dalhousie, Michelle joins the Stepping Up team as Project Coordinator with a passion for supporting students from a holistic perspective.