Megan Speciale, PhD

Palo Alto University Faculty Megan_Speciale


Associate Professor, Chair of Counseling Admissions

Contact Information:




Dr. Megan Speciale is an Associate Professor in the Counseling Department at Palo Alto University. She received her PhD in Counselor Education (CACREP) from the University of New Mexico, where she served as the Clinical Coordinator at the UNM Manzanita Counseling and Training Center and co-founded the LGBTQ Counseling Center at the UNM LGBTQ Resource Center.

Megan has worked as a professional counselor and advocate in a variety of community settings, focusing primarily on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, and asexual (LGBTQIA) populations and sexuality wellness with children, adolescents, adults, and families. As a counselor educator, she draws from social justice and equity-centered pedagogies in her teaching of Sexuality in Counseling, Group Counseling, Substance Abuse Counseling, Multicultural Counseling, and others. Her research explores the intersection of sexual, mental, and relational health, focusing on such topics as kink/BDSM, sexual shame, sexual and gender identity, sex education, and sex work. She is also the current Editor-in-Chief for The Thoughtful Counselor Podcast and the Associate Editor for the Journal of Counseling Sexology and Sexual Wellness.

Talks and Lectures:


Dr. Speciale’s Selected Episodes from The Thoughtful Counselor Podcast:


Selected Publications:

Sexuality and Gender:
Counseling Practice, Preparation, and Leadership: