7th Annual Midwest Developmental Care Conference


Family and Infant Neurodevelopmental Education-FINE Level 1

November 18 &19, 2019

(Day 1 full day and Day 2 morning only)

 University of Illinois at Chicago Student Center West

Presented by Faculty of FINE U.S.
Sponsored by
Children’s Hospital University of Illinois NIDCAP Training Center
and NIDCAP Cincinnati

Course Information

Program  Description

FINE (Family and Infant Neurobehavioral Education) Level 1 provides a comprehensive overview of the theory, scope and evidence for family centered developmental care practices. It is intended to enhance practice of front line NICU staff by providing the foundational knowledge and practical skills to deliver relationship based, individualized, neuroprotective, developmentally supportive care.  FINE is based on the theories and concepts of NIDCAP (Newborn Individualized Developmental Care and Assessment Program) and has been endorsed by the NIDCAP Federation International as foundational education.

Program Details

Level 1 topics will include: Central Nervous System Development, Learning to Observe Babies, Family Participation, Stress and Pain, Sleep and Arousal, Sensory Development, Motor Development, Skin to Skin Care, and Early Feeding Experiences. There will be three breakout sessions where skills can be practiced in a simulated environment.

Target Audience

Nurses, Neonatal Nurse Practitioners, Occupational and Physical Therapists, Speech-Language Pathologists, Respiratory Therapists, Child Life Specialists, Infant Developmental Specialists, Early Intervention Providers, Social Workers, Family Support Specialists and NIDCAP Professionals who work with families and infants in the NICU and who also support families and infants as an infant transitions to home.


The Thompson Rooms in the Student Center West
838 S. Wolcott Avenue  Chicago, IL 60612


Registration fee includes: Breakfast, snacks, Wednesday’s lunch, and program materials including the FINE manual,  which is a comprehensive study and reference guide..  Please register before November 1st.

$225  General registration

$100  University of Illinois staff

Hotel Accommodations

A limited number of rooms have been reserved at the Crowne Plaza  Chicago West Loop conveniently located about one mile from the conference venue.  Please contact the hotel  by October 21st  to secure the special rate of $119+tax per night.  This rate is available if you wish to come early and enjoy the weekend in Chicago. To receive this rate, book online or call 312.829.5000 ​and Please mention Group Code DGA when making reservations online or by phone. Booking Link: Midwest Developmental Care Conference


The U.S. FINE Faculty

Jeffrey R. Alberts, PhD: Jeffrey R. Alberts is Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Indiana University – Bloomington.  His research addresses sensory and physiological bases of behavioral development in rodents, starting during late gestation, through the birth process, and then their huddling, suckling, weaning, and the mother-offspring interactions that coordinate it all..  Current research in his lab includes the mother-offspring microbiome (M-OM) and the development of sociality.  With these interests, Jeff was smitten by the challenges and magic of the NICU that he discovered during a year of mentoring by neonatologists and simultaneous training for NIDCAP certification.  He now straddles lab and NICU, gaining and sharing insights from each.​

Jessica Bowen, MSW, LCSW , CIMI  has worked as a NICU Family Support Specialist for five years, first with March of Dimes at Northwestern Medicine Prentice Women’s Hospital and now she is at Children’s Hospital of University of Illinois.

Jennifer Hofherr, MS, OTR/L , C/NDT is the program manager for the Neonatal Therapy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. She has been a NIDCAP Trainer for the last 14 years.


Bonni Moyer, MSPT is a Developmental Coordinator at St Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix Arizona. Bonni is also the owner and lead Physical therapist of Rainbow Therapy Services and adjunct professor at Franklin Pierce University   She has been a NIDCAP Trainer for 8 years.


Linda Lacina, MSN, RN has been a NICU Nurse for 38 years and is currently a Developmental Specialist at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital.  NIDCAP Cincinnati has been a NIDCAP Training Center since 2007 with Linda as trainer.


Jean Powlesland, MS, RN, is a developmental specialist at UI Health, adjunct clinical faculty at UIC’s college of nursing and has been a NIDCAP Trainer for 13 years.


Continuing education for Thursday’s session will be available for Registered Nurses, Occupational and Physical Therapists,  Respiratory Therapists, Social Work and Early Intervention providers.

Disclosures: The planners and presenters have no real or perceived conflicts of interest that relate to this program. There is no commercial support/sponsorship for this program.

Program Agenda (Day 1)

7:30-8:15 am

Check in and light breakfast

8:15-8:30 am

Welcome and Introduction
Doreen Norris-Stojak – Associate Chief Nursing Officer, Women’s, Children’s and Psychiatric Services UI Health

8:30-9:00 am

Introduction to the FINE program
Jean Powlesland

9:00-10:15 am

Nervous system and sensory development
Jeffrey Alberts

10:15-10:45 am

Break and Vendor Exhibits

11:45-12:15 am

Supporting Families
Jessica Bowen

10:45-11:45 am

Observing Infants
Jennifer Hofherr

12:15-1:15 pm

Boxed Lunch and Vendor Exhibits

1:15-2:00 pm

Motor system development and positioning
Bonni Moyer

2:00-3:00 pm


3:00-3:30 pm

Break and Vendor Exhibits

3:30-4:15 pm

Early Feeding Support
Linda Lacina

4:15-5:15 pm


5:15-5:30 pm


5:30 pm

Adjourn for the day

Program Agenda (Day 2)

7:30-8:00 am

Registration and breakfast

8:00-8:30 am

Reflection on Day 1
Jean Powlesland

8:30-9:15 am

Stress and Pain
Linda Lacina

9:15-10:00 am

Skin to Skin Care
Jessica Bowen

10:00-10:20 am


10:20-11:20 am


11:20-11:50 am

Sleep and Arousal
Jeffrey Alberts

11:50-12:20 pm

The 5 step dialogue
Jennifer Hofherr

12:20-1:00 pm

Next steps and action plans
Jean Powlesland

1:00 pm