The Postgraduate Diploma and Masters Team

The Place2Be staff leading our Postgraduate Diploma and Masters courses have a wealth of experience in the field of children's mental health and wellbeing.

The Postgraduate Diploma and Masters Team


Ilaria Calussi (MBACP Accred-MA; Dip. Counselling; Bsc H Psychology)
Programme Leader (Pg Diploma & MA) & Tutor (Year 2)
Ilaria originally trained in individual and group Gestalt therapy and subsequently in Therapeutic Play and clinical supervision for creative therapists. She has over 18 years’ experience working as a school counsellor and in various mental health services. She joined Place2Be as a School Project Manager in 2011 before moving into the Learning & Practice team as a Postgraduate Diploma tutor and then as Programme Leader, overseeing clinical staff training and a range of professional qualifications. Her ongoing areas of interest include the therapist’s use of embodied self-awareness and gender and sexual diversity. Ilaria is currently working on a relational autoethnographic project aimed at examining how psychotherapy trainees negotiate their sexuality and gender whilst in training.


Paul Lucia
Programme Coordinator
Paul studied Psychology at the University of East Anglia before joining Place2Be in 2015. He currently works as the Programme Coordinator for the Postgraduate Diploma and Masters programmes, overseeing the non-clinical running of the course. This includes working with prospective students by organising Open Evenings and the application process; liaising with the University of East London; managing the learning platform, Moodle; organising course finances, calendars, weekends and work submissions; managing the library resources; and organising the graduation event. In his own time he has completed a Certificate in Counselling Skills with an intention to one day progress onto a full diploma.


Billy Lansdell
Postgraduate Diploma Tutor (Year 1)
Billy worked as a teaching assistant before finding his way to a counselling profession. He is a former Place2Be student and Counsellor on Placement, graduating from the Postgraduate Diploma in Counselling Children in Schools in 2013. Billy subsequently worked with families experiencing complex addiction and domestic violence issues. His Masters research investigated the long-term impact of school counselling from a client perspective. Alongside teaching, Billy is a self-employed school counsellor and clinical supervisor.

Eleni Vambouli

Eleni Vambouli
Postgraduate Diploma Tutor (Year 1)
Eleni is a child and adolescent psychotherapist and has had many years of experience working with a wide variety of children including those who have experienced abuse or early childhood trauma, refugees and those in long-term foster care. She has worked in primary and secondary schools setting up counselling services and offering support to children, families and staff. Eleni worked for Place2Be as a School Project Manager for several years before becoming a trainer. She has a particular interest in treating intergenerational trauma and integrating neuroscientific research in the therapeutic process.


Rachel Gould
Child Observation Tutor (Year 1)
Rachel trained at the University of Sussex before completing an additional training in Psychoanalytic Observational Studies at the Tavistock. She has worked as a counsellor and counselling manager within schools and colleges since 2001 and is a Senior/Specialist (Children and Young People) BACP-accredited Counsellor. In addition to teaching Young Child Observation, Rachel works on the Mental Health Champions - School Leaders programme at Place2Be. She also holds a clinical post at Westminster University and teaches Counselling and Psychotherapy at Birkbeck, University of London.


Rebecca Lunn
Tutor (Year 2)
Rebecca started as a Counsellor on Placement for Place2Be before completing a Masters in Art Psychotherapy at Goldsmiths’ College (University of London). She has extensive experience of school-based therapeutic work, including several years as School Project Manager at a Place2Be school in Wandsworth. Since 2012, she has been part of a skills-sharing project with a Botswana-based NGO, devising and delivering experiential workshops in the expressive arts for non-therapist professionals working with vulnerable children and young people there. She joined Place2Be’s Learning and Practice Team in 2014, teaching CPCAB-accredited courses Levels 2-4, before taking on the Postgraduate Diploma Tutor role in 2018.

Sheila-Simpson.jpgSheila Simpson
Infant Observation Tutor (Year 2)
Sheila qualified as a social worker in 1983 and continued studying Psychodynamic Theory at the Tavistock Clinic. She completed an Observation Studies training in 1988 and a personal analysis, gaining an Advanced Award in Social Work in 2010. She has practised in various settings including a therapeutic community for adolescents, applying Winnicott's understanding of child and adolescent development. Since 1995 she has managed the leaving care service for children and young people in Kensington & Chelsea. A visiting lecturer at the Tavistock & Portman NHS Trust from 2006, she leads seminars on infant and young child observation and is co-organiser for The Emotional Needs of Care Leavers' course.


Emma White
Infant Observation Tutor (Year 2)
Emma has held a number of different roles at Place2Be over the past 18 years. She started out as a Counsellor on Placement in a Place2Be primary school before setting up her own service in a Women’s Heath Centre, developing workshops for children and mothers affected by domestic violence. She studied for an MA at the Institute of Arts in Therapy and Education and now works independently as a Child Psychotherapist in a boy’s secondary school. Emma has been a trainer and tutor for Counsellors on Placement, school staff and within the Professional Qualifications team, and over the last two years has been a tutor for Postgraduate Diploma students through their Infant Observation module.

Maureen.jpgMaureen Leman (BA, AdvDipEd, PGdipCouns, MSc)
Experiential Group Facilitator (Years 1 and 2)
Maureen studied German and English at King's College, London and taught for many years in secondary and adult education. During this time she was principal examiner for GCSE German and a senior A-level moderator. She has an advanced diploma in education, specialising in counselling and guidance in schools, and a postgraduate counselling diploma both from the University of Cambridge. She has worked as a therapist, couples counsellor and group analyst at Addenbrookes and Goodmayes Hospitals, a women's therapy centre and a CAMHS. She currently acts as a staff support group facilitator at Great Ormond Street Hospital. She has an MSc with distinction in group analysis from Birkbeck and is a member of the Institute of Group Analysis.

Sally.jpgSally Stamp (MSc, MA Dth (equivalent), Dip Couns, BA, HCPC registered Dramatherapist, UKCP registered )
Experiential Group Facilitator (Years 1 and 2)
Sally has a Postgraduate Diploma in Dramatherapy from University of Hertfordshire and an Msc in Group Analysis from Birkbeck. She is a registered dramatherapist and dramatherapy supervisor and a member of the Institute of Group Analysis. She has worked for over 20 years as a dramatherapist and adult psychotherapist in forensic settings with adolescents and adults; and as a psychotherapist, couples’ therapist, group analyst, supervisor and staff support group facilitator in the NHS, Third Sector organisations and in private practice. She is trained in Mentalisation Based Therapy (MBT) from the Anna Freud Centre, and is a registered MBT supervisor. She has connections to and has provided supervision and consultation activities for staff members in Emergence. She is published and has presented many papers at national and international conferences.

Dr Stephen Adams-Langley ( DPsych, MA, BACP (Sen. Acc.), UKCP (reg))
Curriculum Lead (Year 3)
Stephen Adams-LangleyStephen has worked for Place2Be for 20 years and is currently Senior Clinical Consultant and clinical lead for Parent Plus, Place2Think and independent schools. He is the Curriculum Lead for the 3rd-year Masters dissertation module and also lectures on child mental health and parenting for Place2Be. He was awarded his doctorate from Middlesex University in 2012 and has since published several papers in the International Journal for School Based Family Counselling. His doctorate looked at models of school-based mental health, children with multiple risk factors and hard-to-reach parents. He was awarded the Jennifer Elton Wilson prize in 2012 for an Outstanding Professional Knowledge paper. He is a visiting lecturer at Brasenose College at the University of Oxford for the Oxford Symposium.

Outside Speakers include:
  • Marina Benini
  • Simon Boots
  • Emilia Dowling
  • James Hawkins
  • Monica Lanyado
  • James McAllister
  • Sophie Robson
  • Max Ryz
  • Molly Woolf
  • Sheila Melzack
  • Victoria Hayward
  • Dee Ingham
  • Iris Gibbs


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