Traysi Handel

Adjunct Lecturer, Field Education
Contact Information
Department of Study 
Adults and Healthy Aging
MSW, University of Southern California, 1995
BA, University of Southern California, 1992

TRAYSI HANDEL has held multiple positions since 2013, first as an external field instructor and field liaison and now as an adjunct professor in the Adults and Healthy Aging department. She currently serves as a medical social worker at Saddleback Memorial Medical Center in Laguna Hills, California, where she provides crisis intervention for the emergency department and in-patient services for the acute care units.

A licensed clinical social worker, she has more than 20 years of experience in the field, with particular emphasis on medical social work, geriatrics, and work with adults, children and families dealing with disability. She developed her passion for medical social work in her early years, working in this capacity at the South Coast Medical Center in Laguna Beach and the Feedback Foundation VIP Center in Santa Ana. Her work incorporated crisis intervention, case management, bereavement, public policy advocacy and promotion of awareness in the field of mental health care.

Handel spent six years working as a program coordinator and social worker for the city of Irvine’s Disability Services, where she provided staff/intern/volunteer supervision and psychological support for clients with complex developmental disorders as well as physical or mental health disabilities. She has also worked in private practice, utilizing problem-solving therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, the Nurtured Heart Approach and mindfulness as interventions to treat intense children and adolescents. 

She holds certifications from: the Beck Institute for Cognitive Behavior Therapy in CBT for anxiety disorders; the National Association of Social Workers/Board of Behavioral Sciences in clinical supervision; USC in field instructor training; the Children’s Success Foundation in the Nurtured Heart Approach; and Heart of Yoga in the 200-hour teacher training. 

She received her bachelor’s degree in political science with a minor in law and society as well as her master’s in social work from USC.