Featured Stories Archive

Helping Heal Wounded Warriors

graphic of wounded warrior

Recreation can improve a person's physical and mental well-being, but people with disabilities or injuries often get excluded from recreation programs. "Wounded warriors" (people in the military with injuries or disabilities) can face further challenges during rehabilitation, as recreational programs are often used for rehabilitative purposes.

Faculty and alumni of the College of Health and Human Development are working to solve this problem. Using funding from the Department of Defense and the U.S. Army, they have created a course for military recreation program managers.

Read more about the Wounded Warriors program.

Students Bring Telemedicine to Kenya

image of student participants

Twelve Penn State students wanted to improve the health of people living in rural Kenya, so they traveled there in summer 2009 to introduce the idea of telemedicine. The students went as part of a project known as Mashavu (which means “chubby cheeks”—a sign of good health—in Swahili, Kenya’s native language). The group tested health care kiosks that can be used to send health care information to doctors in other locations, who then respond with advice.

Read more about telemedicine in Kenya.

Insect Deli Serves Meal Worms, Crickets, and Global Nutrition Awareness

image of student participants

Those ants on a log aren’t raisins; they’re real ants. And they’re much healthier than a bag of chips or candy. At the annual Great Insect Fair, hosted by Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences, one professor and several students in the Department of Nutritional Sciences cooked and served delicious insects and tried to make it clear why people all over the world are eating bugs.

Read more about the Insect Deli.

Increasing Diversity in Research

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Forty-one students participated in the Summer Research Opportunities program at Penn State, and four of those students worked with faculty in the College of Health and Human Development. The focus of SROP is to complete a research project—students become protégés under a faculty member, learning about their mentor’s research and also pursuing a topic of their own. The program also provides students knowledge and guidance on how to apply to graduate school.

Read more about the Summer Research Opportunities Program (SROP).

Student Overcomes Near-Fatal Accident

image of Katie Sharkey

Very few people have been as close to death as Katie Sharkey, and survived. Now, years after her terrible accident, Katie is filled with determination, optimism, and hope.

"I used to cry every time I passed the scene of the accident, just thinking about it," explains Katie. "Now, I look back at April 7, not as the day I almost died, but as the day I lived."

Read more about Katie’s story.

The Influence of Penn State's Biomechanics Program

image of historical research

Through the study of biomechanics, researchers are seeing movement in new ways, and Penn State was one of the first places where the scientific discipline took form. Dr. Richard Nelson first established Penn State's Biomechanics Lab in 1967 in the building on the University Park campus known as the "Water Tower," which was later renamed the Biomechanics Teaching Lab. There, a number of groundbreaking activities took place that would eventually shape the field of biomechanics into what it is today.

Read more about Penn State's Biomechanics Program.

Enriching Children’s Lives with Food

image of student cooking

Family, friends, and food were brought together at one children's camp this summer. Cook Like a Chef, a collaboration between Penn State Outreach and the College of Health and Human Development, teaches children age 11 to 13 how to cook and gives them the opportunity to experience new foods, with guidance from Anne Quinn Corr, instructor in nutritional sciences and seasoned chef.

Read more about the Cook Like a Chef program.

Students Embark on a Summer-Long Research Exchange Program in Germany

This summer, four graduate students in Penn State’s College of Health and Human Development embarked on a summer-long research exchange program to the University of Jena in Germany.

While there, the students are networking and collaborating with some of the world’s leaders in human development and psychology. Part 1 | Part II | Part III

Capstone Project Leads to Valuable Experience

image of students presenting

Transitioning from the classroom to the corporate world can be difficult for students. However, students in the Master of Health Administration (M.H.A.) program get an up-close view of the corporate world they are about to enter. As part of the M.H.A. capstone experience, students undertake a semester-long group project in which they take on real-world challenges proposed by companies in the health care industry.

Read more about the capstone experience.

Summer Camps Help Children Fight Obesity

When school’s not in session, it can be difficult to find ways to keep kids off of the couch. Summer camps, however, prove to be a much healthier alternative to TV. Not only do summer camps provide fun, engaging activities for kids, but kids at summer camps meet or exceed the amount of daily physical activity recommended by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Read more about the benefits of summer camps.

Improving Communities through Tourism

image of kids in Tanzania

Tourism can be leveraged to benefit communities, but this requires community involvement in all stages of the tourism initiative, from development to implementation. Dr. Duarte Morais and his colleagues recently worked with a Tanzanian community to establish several tourism development strategies, which will improve the local community's livelihood and well-being. The group organized the building of a pottery kiln and booth for a local women’s co-op, and they created a training program for local mountain guides.

Read more about the program.