Deborah B. Vilas

Supervised Fieldwork Advisor; Course Instructor

Academic Interests

Some of the Values that Shape My Work

Transparency
Empathy
Joy
Play
Loose Parts
Unconditional positive regard
Collaboration
Learning new things
Emotional Responsiveness
Investment in people and learning
The developmental interaction approach
Learning through doing
Critical Feedback
Trusting the process

Work with Families, Children, Schools, and Communities

Child Life Specialist, Bellevue Hospital Center & Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center               
Support Group Facilitator, Big Apple Circus, Clown Care Unit
Play Therapist, Northside Center for Child Development                   
Social Worker, Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services
Teacher, Karen Horney Clinic                                      
Sunday School Teacher, Unitarian Church Of All Souls

Recent Professional Contributions

Child Life Council, Certified Child Life Specialist & Member
Research and Scholarship Committee Member
The Foundation for Ichthyosis and Related Skin Types (FIRST)
Chair of Membership Support Committee
Standish Foundation for Children Advisory Board Member
Bank Street College of Education Autism Annotation Advisory Board Member
Bank Street College of Education Website Committee
Bank Street College of Education Online Research Committee
Advising seven Child Life Students

Educational Background

  • MSW, Shirley M. Ehrenkranz School of Social Work, New York University
  • M.S., Early Childhood Education with concentration in Child Life, Bank Street College of Education
  • B.A., Sociology, Georgetown University

Selected Publications and Presentations

  • Vilas, D. (2012). Loss in the classroom. Conference presentation, Bank Street College of Education Retreat. Bank Street College of Education, New York, NY.

  • Vilas, D. (2012). Playful eruptions around the world. New York Association for Play Therapy Newsletter, 15(2), 5-6.

  • Vilas, D. (2012). Loose parts in the playroom. New York Association for Play Therapy Newsletter, 16(1), 9-10.

  • Vilas, D., & Boyd Webb, N. (2011). Children with medical conditions in the hospital and in the community: How play therapy helps deal with stress and anxiety. Keynote address, 12th Annual Conference. New York Association for Play Therapy, Poughkeepsie, NY.

  • Vilas, D. (2010). Illness, loss and death in early childhood classrooms. Staff in-service presentation, Bank Street Family Center SEIT Home & Community-Based Program. Bank Street College of Education, New York, NY. 

  • Vilas, D. (2009). Playing for life: Making room for deep play in your classroom. Staff in-service presentation. Hyde Leadership School, Bronx, NY.

  • Vilas, D. (2009). Emotionally responsive teaching. Staff in-service presentation. Little Red Schoolhouse, New York, NY.

  • Vilas, D. (2009). Child life practice in hospitals. In N. Boyd Webb (Ed.), Helping children and adolescents with chronic and serious medical conditions: A strengths-based approach (pp. 73-88). New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons.

Contact me:

(212) 875-4653 dvilas@bankstreet.edu
610 West 112Th Street, 611
New York, NY 10025