Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities

About the LEND program

The Maine Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (LEND) program is a federally-funded project aimed at expanding resources to individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (ND) in the state.


Our goals include training healthcare providers, parents, educators, and others to improve the health of children and others with ASD, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, genetic, and other disorders that affect their quality of life. We focus on timely diagnosis, early identification and intervention, effective services, transition to the workforce, and increasing participation in family and peer activities such as school and the workplace.


LEND training includes classroom and experiential learning, parent and provider conferences, and the visitation of key agencies throughout the state.

Each year, long-term trainees (graduate students from up to 11 different disciplines, family members, and self-advocates) receive 300 hours of training in nine months. The training involves mentored experiences in clinical settings, classroom sessions, and community experiences to learn best practices, interprofessional teamwork, leadership development, and advocacy activities to prepare them to take on leadership roles in their respective fields.

Download the Maine LEND Brochure (PDF)

UNE/Maine LEND Pediatric Physical Therapy Residency Program 

UNE and the Maine LEND have established a Pediatric Physical Therapy Residency Program (PDF). The mission of the program is to prepare residents for clinical specialty and independent advanced practice in pediatric physical therapy.

Residency Accreditation

UNE/Maine LEND Pediatric PT Residency Program is currently in developing status and will be applying for candidacy status, the first step in accreditation, in 2024. Participants who graduate from a program in developing or candidacy status are not deemed to have completed an accredited program.

Download the Residency Program Application (PDF)

Outcomes to Date
  • Three (3) Residents have graduated from the program to date.
  • Two residency graduates have taken the ABPTS Pediatric Clinical Specialty exam and passed in 2021 and 2022. The third graduate’s exam results are not yet available.
  • All program graduates are currently practicing in Maine in the field of Pediatric Physical Therapy, serving rural and underserved children and families with neurodevelopmental disabilities.


UNE is collaborating with several community partners including Maine Medical Center, Maine General Hospital, and Northeast Hearing and Speech. Specialists from all over the state serve as instructors, mentors, liaisons, and role models. In turn, the LEND program builds and strengthens community and rural partnerships and engages underserved populations to deliver services and increase knowledge.

Are you a new parent?

We are looking into how easy or hard it is for parents to use a free smartphone app that will help doctors know if your baby is at high risk for problems with sitting, walking, or other early movements.

Your child may qualify to participate in this study if he/she:

  • Born Full Term (40 weeks)
  • Will soon be aged 10-16 weeks
  • Had any problems before, during, or after birth
  • Was admitted and discharged from the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)

What will I have to do?

  • Sign a consent form
  • Record a 2–3 minute video of your baby using a smartphone app between 10–16 weeks old
  • Complete a survey (5 minutes) about using the app

To learn more information about this study or how you can participate, email the research team at babymoves@une.com. You will be compensated with a $50 Amazon gift card for your time.


For more information contact Lianne Lissauer, Maine LEND program coordinator at (207) 221-4582.