2023 Trainer and RBPD Specialist Symposium

May 5-7, 2023
Ruttger’s Resort in Brainerd Lakes, MN

Join us for a retreat-style event for trainers, RBPD specialists, and course writers! We are piloting new ways to engage with one another including:

  • A Friday-through-Sunday event so that more child care providers who are also trainers/course writers can attend
  • A registration fee that includes lodging and meals! The cost you see includes all sessions, meals, and your room
  • Saturday 4-hour power sessions. Let’s dive deep into these topics! Choose from one of three sessions and attend in the morning, then come back in the afternoon for more learning on the same topic. Session descriptions and titles coming soon!

What we’ve kept the same:

  • The great vibe of meeting all the talented people that do this work
  • KARAOKE! Saturday night fun awaits!

Each day is approved for professional development hours in Develop; see our Snapshot Agenda below for the number of hours each day. If you are a professional who requires a certificate for hours completed, please inquire onsite at the event.

Snapshot Agenda

Join us for incredible sessions from local and national presenters including Ijumaa Jordan, Arielle Handevidt, Mike Huber, Jamie Bonczyk, and more! We are finalizing sessions and will have detailed information available here soon.


12 p.m. Check-in begins!
1-4 p.m. Intensive session on trauma-informed RBPD work with Arielle Handevidt
4-5:30 p.m. Reception and check-in continues
5:30-7 p.m. Dinner and keynote with Arielle Handevidt
7-8:30 p.m. Meet our partners session

Total Develop hours: 5.5 hours


8-9:30 a.m. Breakfast and keynote with Ijumaa Jordan
9:30-9:45 a.m. Break
9:45-11:45 a.m. Attend the first part of your breakout session! Choose one of three breakout sessions on the topics of DEI, course writing, or trauma-informed practice.
11:45-1 p.m. Lunch and break
1-3 p.m. Attend the second part of your breakout session!
3-5:30 p.m. Free time
5:30-7 p.m. Dinner
7-9 p.m. Karaoke

Total Develop hours: 5.5 hours


8-9:45 a.m. Checkout, breakfast, and closing remarks
9:45-11:45 a.m. Morning session
11:45 a.m.-12 p.m. Grab a box lunch for the road

Total Develop hours: 3 hours

Menu for your stay


We are thrilled to share more about the current line up of speakers! We’re still curating a few sessions, so check back soon for more information.

Arielle Handevidt, Friday keynote speaker and intensive session leader

Arielle Handevidt, MA, IMH-E®, is the director of early childhood at Northside Achievement Zone (NAZ) and provides reflective spaces for professionals throughout the Twin Cities to process their work. Her background is in early care and education and she holds a master’s degree in child and adolescent development with an emphasis in infant and early childhood mental health. She enjoys thinking about the multiple perspectives that are held when working through relationships with young children and their families. She is passionate about creating equitable spaces where individuals can show up as their whole selves. Previous to her work at NAZ, Arielle was an RBPD specialist for the Center for Inclusive Child Care and director of early childhood at the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health.

Resources for Arielle Handevidt sessions:

Ijumaa Jordan, Saturday keynote speaker and session leader

Ijumaa Jordan is a fat, Black, cis-gendered woman (she, her, hers) daily engaging in the beautiful struggle of life, doing the internal and external work to abolish systems of oppression such as racism, sexism, transphobia, and classism, etc.

Ijumaa shows up for this work with intensity and passion, being joyful, thinking critically, and holding a learning space with care and grace. She loves afternoon naps and snacks, and you can usually find her online looking serious and laughing loudly.

Resources for Ijumaa Jordan’s sessions:

Jamie Bonczyk, intensive session leader

Jamie Bonczyk, MA, CPPM, has been interviewed by MPR, New America and Early Learning Nation. She has published 11 articles in Exchange Early Childhood Leaders Magazine. Her voice can be heard as a returning guest on the Cultivate MN podcast. Jamie is a Program Officer at Greater Twin Cities United Way staffing the 80×3: Resilient From The Start initiative.

Mike Huber, intensive session leader

Mike Huber, MEd, is the author of Inclusion Includes Us: Building Bridges and Removing Barriers in Early Childhood and Embracing Rough and Tumble Play. He is the co-host of the podcast Teaching with the Body in Mind and frequent guest on That Early Childhood Nerd. Mike is the Curriculum Specialist at St. David’s Center in Minnetonka, MN.

Tracy Schreifels, intensive session leader

Tracy Schreifels, MS, LMFT, IMH-E®, is an infant mental health clinical mentor and executive director at Ellison Center in St. Cloud, MN. She provides outpatient clinical services to families with young children as well as reflective consultation services to early childhood and home visiting programs. Tracy provides training, clinical supervision, and mentoring to a variety of professionals in the field. Her past experiences teaching and providing mental health consultation in Head Start, working in a preschool day treatment program, and working in a clinical setting with parents and children serve as a foundation for her trainings. In addition, Tracy serves as co-chair of the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health-Infant and Early Childhood Division Advisory Board. She is passionate about sharing her background knowledge in challenging behaviors and early childhood development with caregivers of young children.

Intended Audience

Early childhood trainers and RBPD specialists


The Trainer and RBPD Symposium is sponsored by the Trainer and Relationship-based Professional Development Specialist Support program (TARSS) funded by the Minnesota Department of Human Services.


Contact us at tarss@umn.edu.