Division of Student Affairs > About > Staff Directory > Rena Elyyan

Rena Elyyan, LCSW

  • MSW, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • BS, psychology from Loyola University Chicago
Relevant Experience

Rena has over 6 years of experience working across the mental health sector. Having experience working with both adolescents and adults, Rena has had the opportunity to support folks from many different walks of life and of diverse backgrounds. She has extensive experience working in higher level care treatment programs, including residential treatment, partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient care. Rena also has experience in providing crisis intervention during her time working in an emergency room. In addition to her hospital and treatment program work experience, Rena had the opportunity to serve as a case manager supporting community mental health. In this role, she facilitated access to basic need resources for marginalized communities across Chicago. Throughout her varying roles, Rena has developed extensive experience supporting individuals who are struggling with anxiety, depression, eating disorders and trauma.

Prior to joining DePaul University, Rena most recently worked as a clinical assessor, completing comprehensive biopsychosocial assessments for a treatment center in Chicago. Rena’s primary focus was to support her client’s well-being by connecting folks to necessary mental health resources and increasing access to treatment. During her time as an assessor, Rena discovered a passion for working with college students and folks within the LGBTQA+ community. Rena is eager to leverage her experiences and clinical expertise to support the DePaul community!

Clinical Interests

Rena utilizes a strengths-based perspective and person-in-environment framework in her practice. As a social worker, Rena believes it is her duty to serve as an advocate for her clients. In her role as an advocate, Rena works to address issues causing distress to her clients, including discrimination and lack of adequate resources. Rena adopts a systems approach to her work, understanding the larger context of systemic inequities and injustices which further oppress and marginalize folks. She believes it is essential to address the root causes of systemic injustices, rather than blaming those who are disadvantaged by them. Rena’s clinical approach includes brief,​ solution-focused therapy and mindfulness.

Fun Fact

Rena’s favorite reality television show is RuPaul’s Drag Race and she actively participates in a fantasy drag league. She also enjoys astrology, fiction novels, and biking around the city.