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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato


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Family Mediation

Family Mediation Skills training provides participants with the tools needed to effectively build cooperation and resolve conflict among family members. The course is designed to assist those who wish to pursue a career in mediation related to divorce, child custody, parenting time and finances.



Social Workers, Therapists, Human Resource Professionals, Teachers, and those who work with families in different capacities will also benefit from this session as we learn skills and techniques to assist others in resolving conflict including a mediation model, communication and listening skills, handling high emotion, bringing people from positions to interests and drafting durable agreements.

Family mediation is an alternative to family court designed to assist parents in creative, collaborative co-parenting, and resolving issues in the best interest of children.   It is a cooperative and constructive way to resolve differences and plan for the future. 

The 40-Hour Family Mediation Skills Course fulfills all requirements by the Minnesota Supreme Court as a qualified neutral on the family mediation roster.

The 30-Hour Family Mediation “Bridge” Course is for those who have completed the basic 30-hour Civil Mediation Course and now wish to qualify as Family Mediator Neutrals under Rule 114 of the MN General Rules of Practice.

Training meets all Rule 114 requirements for qualified neutrals under Minnesota Supreme Court office of Education and Organizational Development and MN Continuing Legal Education.






    • Psychological issues for children and adults related to separation and divorce
    • Family economics
    • Styles of Mediation, Evaluative Processes including early neutral evaluation
    • Statutes related to custody, parenting plans, spousal maintenance, child support and property distribution
    • Ethical considerations in family mediation
    • Building and drafting effective co-parenting agreements
    • Domestic Violence Issues in Mediation


40-hour Course Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Monday and Tuesday October 10, 11, 12, 15 and 16, 2012
30-hour Bridge Course Thursday, Friday, Monday and Tuesday October 11, 12, 15 and 16, 2012

Time (all dates): 
8:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. each day


    • 40-Hour Family Mediation Skills: $995 (if registered before September 26th); $1195 (if registered September 27th or later)
    • 30-Hour Bridge Course: $795 (if registered before September 26th); $995 (if registered September 27th or later)    

      Includes classroom materials; lunch will be on your own (cafeteria available onsite)


Continuing Education Credit:

    • Course is approved for 40 hours of Continuing Education for Marriage and Family Therapists
    • 40 contact hours for Family Mediation Course
    • 30 contact hours for Bridge Course
      • Continuing Legal Education credits are in the application process



Any persons from any profession who desires to conduct family mediations and qualify for placement on the Rule 114 Family Mediation Roster.


40-Hour Family Session:

  • Day One: Basic mediation skills and techniques, including mediation process, listening, communication skills, collaboration, and participation in role plays
    • Note: 40-Hour Family Session also includes the 30-Hour "Bridge" Session

30-Hour “Bridge” Session:

  • Day Two: Issues related to Family Law including custody and parenting time statutes, exploration of various roles in the family court such as Parenting Time Expeditor, Parenting Consultant, Impartiality, and participation through role plays and exercises
  • Day Three: Psychological Issues for Parents and Impact on Children related to divorce.
  • Day Four: Family Law Statutes, Family Economics, and Financial matters related to divorce.
  • Day Five: Six hours of domestic abuse issues related to families and divorce, relationship dynamics when abuse occurs, impact on children, how abuse affects the mediation process.



Helen Preddy

Helen conducts Alternative Dispute Resolution seminars both in Minnesota and throughout the country, facilitating workshops for institutions of higher learning, government employees, corporate professionals and members of the legal and health care professions.

Helen is also an attorney practicing in Minnesota.  She is the President and CEO of U.S. Arbitration and Mediation of Minnesota, Inc., where she is a mediator both in Minnesota and throughout the United States. She received her J.D. from William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, MN.  She received her mediation training and advanced work from CDR in Boulder, Colorado and the Harvard Negotiation Project in Cambridge, MA.

Since 1988, she has been mediating for federal and state courts, as well as private corporations and individuals.  In 2005 Ms. Preddy was appointed by the Bankruptcy Court in Portland, Oregon as one of four mediators to work on the Archdiocese of Portland sex abuse cases. Ms. Preddy enjoys working with complex issues, assisting parties in understanding the implications of their decisions as they work toward resolution. 


Janeen L. Massaros

Ms. Massaros brings her experience and insights as a mediator, facilitator and professional trainer to her work in the field of alternative dispute resolution. As sole proprietor of Southern Metropolitan Mediation Services since 1996, she assists individuals to resolve issues related to dissolution, co-parenting, post-divorce shared parenting concerns and property distribution. She also provides mediation and training services to businesses, supervisors, human resource professionals and employee assistance programs to resolve workplace disputes regarding job performance and expectations, co-worker relationships, multi-party organizational conflict and communication.


Registration information: Registration taken on a first come first serve basis.
You will receive a confirmation e-mail following your registration

Cancellation Policy

Questions: If you have questions about the training or how to register, contact the College of Extended Learning at 507-389-2572, or 1-800-311-3142, or email

For MSU events: individuals with a disability, who need reasonable accommodation to participate in this event, are asked to contact the Office of Accessibility Resources at 507-389-2825 (V/TTD), 800-627-3529 or 711 (MRS/TTD) at least five days prior to the event.

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