Helga Yuan Larsen

Helga Yuan Larsen is the Program Director for Early Childhood & K-12 Education, supporting faculty and administrators in their roles as parents through private consultations, guidance and resource sharing, and the development of programs to address the needs of families.

Helga has over 15 years of experience in education, working in a variety of roles across multiple settings. In 2006, Helga joined the Office of Head Start Training and Technical Assistance, supporting program staff in delivering quality services to children and families. She grew in this role to become the Regional Early Childhood Manager, overseeing the work of the early childhood specialists who supported the Head Start/Early Head Start programs in New York and New Jersey.

Prior to joining NYU in 2018, Helga was the Director for QUALITYstarsNY, New York State’s quality rating and improvement system (QRIS) that assesses and provides quality improvement supports to child care centers, Head Start programs, family child care homes, and Pre-K classrooms in primary schools. Under her leadership, QUALITYstarsNY increased its reach to support over 750 early childhood programs across the state.

Helga received her BA from Barnard College, where she discovered the joys of toddlerhood as a teacher at the Barnard College Center for Toddler Development. She went on to pursue her MSEd in Early Childhood Education at the University of Pennsylvania. During her graduate studies, Helga interned at the Families and Work Institute, supporting research on policies that states and employers implemented to address the changing workforce, families, and community.