In 1931, Dr. Hellersberg earned her Ph.D. from the University of Heidelberg, Germany, under the supervision of Dr. Willy Hellpach (who had been trained by Dr. Wilhelm Wundt). Her dissertation, entitled The Youth Worker, their Working Methods, and Way of Life, was a landmark study of urban working class women's lives. From 1925 to 1931, she was a lecturer at the Academy for Social Work in Berlin and at the Protestant University of Berlin. From 1932 to 1936, she worked at the children's counseling center in Berlin-Zehlendorf. In 1936, she left Germany because of the rise of the Nazi government and emigrated Cuba. In 1938, she arrived in the United States.
While at Wagner (1942-43) she taught courses in psychology and sociology.
In the 1950's, she was a psychologist at Clifford Beers Guidance Clinic in New Haven, CT and had a private practice as a psychoanalyst.
Hellersberg later co-developed the Horn-Hellersberg test, a projective personality test, which she described in her 1950 book The individual's relation to reality in our culture; an experimental approach by means of the Horn-Hellersberg test.
Hellersberg's personality test was described in the article below which was published in the American Journal of Orthopsychiatry in 1945.