Arvin Bains '03
Student, M.S.W. program, New York University
Forget textbooks. At Sarah Lawrence, Arvin went straight to the original sources.
Foundations/Motivations: Studied psychology, wanted to work with children
Experiences: Did fieldwork at SLC Early Childhood Center
Results: Is pursuing master’s degree in social work
A native of Himachal, India, Arvin studied psychology as an undergraduate and found himself attracted to developmental psychology. He also liked the idea of working with children, so after Rutgers, he decided to pursue child development. He did his homework. He knew he wanted someplace with small classes, a place where he could be encouraged and nurtured. As soon as he met a few of Sarah Lawrence’s faculty members and sat in on some classes—including an undergraduate class with only six students—he figured it was a program unlike any other.
B.A., Psychology, Rutgers University (1998)
Ask Arvin about Sarah Lawrence, and chances are he’ll talk about his professors. While Barbara Schecter, director of the Child Development program, provided overall encouragement and guidance, Carl Barenboim served as his thesis adviser, with one-on-one conferences lasting as long as two hours. “The teachers are dedicated, 100 percent with you—and that’s important,” Arvin says. He also points to his many hours at Sarah Lawrence’s Early Childhood Center, where he was a “participant observer,” not sitting behind a one-way mirror, but engaging with the children. His experience there helped him land a position with a mental health clinic that usually hires only M.S.W. or Ph.D. psychology students or professionals—not M.A. students.
- Center for Preventive Psychiatry, Yonkers, New York (1999–2003)
- Child Development Institute, Sarah Lawrence (1999)
- Early Childhood Center, Sarah Lawrence (1998–99)
“Emotion Regulation in Young Children”
Arvin explored how children experience and express their emotions and how thinking plays into that. He also looked at the role of caregivers, who strongly influence how children learn to regulate their emotions.
After he finished at Sarah Lawrence, Arvin entered the master’s program at the New York University School of Social Work. A field placement will start this fall, when he hopes to work with caregivers, particularly mothers. In the meantime, he’s been focusing on an older age group, mentoring students in early childhood courses at a local college—work that has made him realize that he also enjoys teaching. He hopes eventually to combine his two interests by teaching and working in a clinical health setting.
M.S.W., New York University (2003–present)
M.A., Child Development, Sarah Lawrence College (2003)
College mentor/tutor (2003–present)