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Virgen Luce
Clinical Associate Professor of Social Work
(212) 992-9716

Areas of Expertise

Health care, psychiatry, AIDS, Parkinson’s disease


Virgen Luce (LCSW-R, ACSW) joined NYU’s Silver School of Social Work as full-time faculty member in 2006. She obtained her BA at Lehman College (CUNY) and MSW and a post-graduate master’s certificate in social work administration and supervision and training at Hunter College School of Social Work (CUNY). Her extensive professional clinical career began in a community-based mental health agency, and continued to hospital settings where she held various clinical, supervisory, and director-level management positions in the service of a multi-racial/ethnic client population. She received the 2011 Social Work Leadership Award from the NASW-Latino Social Work Task Force for her dedication and commitment to social work education and the great strides that she has achieved to encourage and support Latino students and social workers in the community.

Professor Luce has been a leader in HIV/AIDS prevention and education, resulting in the creation of new resources and services for patients in her previous senior management and administrative positions. This includes director of behavioral health at Betances Health Center and manager of AIDS Center: Pediatric-Maternal Services & Women’s Project at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City.

She has given numerous presentations on “Mental Health and HIV Affected Adolescents and the Therapeutic Use of Art with HIV+ Children." In addition, she has presented on "The Signs and Symptoms of Child Abuse to Students in the NYU Occupational Therapy Program." As a lecturer at the New York City Social Work Education Consortium Immigrant Child Welfare Fellowship, she presented "Best Practices for the Development of Culturally/Linguistically Competent Helping Interventions and Evaluation of Goal Achievement and Service Outcomes." She co-developed a research tool, School-Based Field Education Needs Assessment: Perspectives of Students, Field Instructors, and Faculty Liaisons, to identify training needs for students, field instructors, and faculty advisors in order to improve school-based field placements. She was the NYU-Silver School faculty liaison to the Immigrant Child Welfare Fellowship Project, a partnership between the New York City Social Work Education Consortium and the Administration for Children Services. In this position, she trained social work graduates to work with immigrant families in child welfare settings. She is an adjunct lecturer at the Silberman School of Social Work at CUNY Hunter College.

Her ongoing interest in health care (i.e. psychiatry, AIDS) has expanded to the care of patients with Parkinson’s disease and their families. Professor Luce, who is bilingual in English and Spanish, maintains a private practice in clinical social work in New York City. Her off-campus activities include facilitating Parkinson’s caregivers support group at the Edmond J. Safra Parkinson’s Wellness Program. Professor Luce recently was approved to be the principal investigator to study the experiences of care partners in support groups at Edmond J. Safra Parkinson’s Wellness Program.