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Susan De Luca, MSW, PhD

TITLEShari Bolen, MD

Associate Professor of Psychiatry


Dr. De Luca’s research experience on adolescent and young adult suicide prevention centers on peer norms surrounding suicidal thoughts and behaviors, rejecting codes of silence, disclosure patterns preceding and following suicidal ideation and attempts, the availability of social coping resources, and help-seeking attitudes of adolescents in distress, specifically focusing on racial/ethnic minorities, LGBTQ+, and underserved populations.

Her work has received funding through NIMH (T32 NRSA postdoctoral fellowship), and NIMHD (NIH Loan Repayment Program) in addition to foundation and government sources. She recently completed her NIMH study (1R03MH112015-01A1) examining suicide trajectories among racial/ethnic minority adolescents investigating how developmental social relationships were related to risk.  Currently, she is examining (1R03MH122852-01) how religious affiliation and levels of religiosity are related to sexual minority adolescent suicide ideation and attempts. She is also Co-I to a 5 year study involving family lawyers, mortgage lenders, and unemployment officers (1DP2MH129967-01) in suicide prevention efforts.  Dr. De Luca also led numerous studies that include mixed-methods approaches to novel suicide interventions, longitudinal examinations of parental depressive symptoms and suicidal thoughts and their relationship to their child’s reported levels of connectedness to trusted adults and subsequent help-seeking attitudes and behaviors during times of distress. These studies will also provide a foundation to improve targeted upstream prevention programs in community settings.  

PUBLICATIONS luca.2/bibliography/48064128/public/?sort=date&direction=descending


American Association of Suicidology

Society for Social Work Research

Council on Social Work Education             


  • Suicide Prevention, Adolescence,
  • Social Justice
  • Help-seeking Attitudes and Behaviors
  • Health Disparities


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