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School of Hospitality Management NEWs  page 12

Health and Human Development News



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| Winter 2013-14

you& your health

College of Health and Human Development Dean

Ann C. Crouter

Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies and Outreach Dennis Shea

Interim Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Education Kathryn Drager

Greetings from the College of Health and Human Development At its heart, our college is focused on improving the quality of human health and the quality of life for people of all ages and backgrounds, as well as training the next generation of leaders in this important area. You can find our faculty members in their laboratories where they might be studying exercise physiology or developmental neuroscience, out in the community where they might be examining quality of life for cancer survivors or conducting an intervention to prevent diabetes, or in the classroom where they share their knowledge every day with future speech pathologists, physicians, experts on children and youth, physical therapists, community health leaders, outdoor educators, hoteliers, dietitians, and hospital administrators. The stories in this magazine will give you a flavor for the wide variety of research going on in the college. We’ve created eight versions with sections specifically tailored to each of our academic units to give readers an opportunity to learn more about what is going on in the part of the college that they remember best. All of the versions of the magazine are available on the web, so if you are curious about what the graduates of other majors are reading, please go to: A magazine is no substitute for what you can learn by returning to campus. Please schedule a visit to Penn State—and to our college—for 2014. You would be welcome to tour our facilities, sit in on a class or two, and soak up the energetic, rejuvenating spirit that Penn State’s incredible students bring with them to everything they do. I look forward to welcoming you back!

Assistant Dean for Undergraduate Education



Douglas Ford

Director of Development Kathleen Rider

Assistant Dean for Alumni Relations and Special Projects Abigail Diehl

Assistant Director of Alumni Relations Kristi Stoehr

Director of Communications and Creative Services Scott Sheaffer

Senior Designer


Dennis Maney

Science Writer/Editor Sara LaJeunesse

Communications Specialist Jennifer Hicks

Alumni Mentoring Program Coordinator and Staff Assistant for Alumni and College Relations


V. Diane Collins

Warmly, Articles may be reprinted with permission; for more information please contact the Office of Alumni and College Relations at 814-865-3831 or

Ann C. Crouter Raymond E. and Erin Stuart Schultz Dean College of Health and Human Development

For general correspondence, please write to the Office of Alumni and College Relations, College of Health and Human Development, The Pennsylvania State University, 201 Henderson Building, University Park, PA 16802-6501; e-mail; or visit This publication is available in alternative media on request. Penn State is committed to affirmative action, equal opportunity, and the diversity of its workforce. (HHD14032) U.Ed. HHD 14-032


Special Section: News From Your Department  page 12

you & your fitness nutrition health care relationships


YOU & YOUR Fitness

Exercise for Life

Sayers John Miller, III, assistant professor of kinesiology and former athletic trainer for the San Francisco 49ers, gives tips on how to prevent exercise-related injuries and maintain fitness throughout life. Got knee pain? Plantar fasciitis? IT-band syndrome? Achilles tendinitis? Chances are, if you’re suffering from one of these overuse injuries, you have weak hips, glutes, or abdominals—or all three. According to Miller (featured in the images), weaknesses in these major muscle groups can lead to knees that collapse inward during exercise, a habit that can wreak havoc on the body. “Once you’ve damaged cartilage or torn ligaments, they’re never quite the same,” says Miller. “One of the things we commonly

see is knee, ankle, and lower back pain, and one of the common causes of these types of pain is the inability to control the lower extremities.” To avoid injuries that can squash our hopes of maintaining fitness into old age, Miller says we should regularly dedicate time to strengthening the muscles—hips, gluteals, and abdominals—that control our lower extremities.

Double-Leg Squats

Squats Variations

Keep the knee over the foot and the beltline parallel to the ground (image A) while squatting. A band (image A) can help prevent the knees from collapsing inward (image B).

As you develop strength, begin to do single-leg squats (image C). Another variation is to place an exercise ball against a wall and hold a static squat position (image D).


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Clamshell Leg Lifts

Clamshell Leg Lifts With Band

Lie on your side with knees at right angles. Lift the top knee up, then lower it. This exercise strengthens the glutes and the external rotators of the hip.

When you become stronger, a band can provide additional resistance.

Leg Presses

Leg Presses With Band

Extend one leg at a time while lifting the gluteals and lowering them. This exercise strengthens the gluteal, hamstring, and abdominal muscles.

Doing a leg press with a band around the knees forces you to pull the knees out at the same time you are moving up and down, which emphasizes external rotation of the lower extremity, rather than internal rotation.

Plank Rotations To strengthen the abdominals, position your body parallel to the floor with upper body resting on elbow and forearms and lower body resting on toes. Hold.

To do a side plank, rest on one hand while raising the opposite hand in the air. Balance on sides of feet.

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YOU & YOUR Fitness and Nutrition

I’m Pregnant.

Is it Safe to Exercise? Research consistently shows that exercising while pregnant delivers tremendous health benefits, yet many women avoid exercising because they worry about falling. In a recent study, Danielle Symons Downs, associate professor of kinesiology and obstetrics and gynecology, and Jinger Gottschall, assistant professor of kinesiology, examined whether and how pregnant women’s gaits change as they transition between level and hill surfaces, such as when walking or running outside.

“Most people alter their gait to avoid tripping when walking on uneven ground, but we found that pregnant women adopt an exaggerated gait strategy compared to non-pregnant adults,” says Gottschall. The team concludes that although pregnant women do exaggerate their gaits, walking or jogging outside are generally safe activities. However, if pregnant women do not feel comfortable walking outside, a treadmill or a track are good alternatives.

Visit a Park for Your Health Want to become more physically fit? Head to your local park, says Andrew Mowen, associate professor of recreation, park, and tourism management. “Studies show that people exercise more when they have access to parks,” he says. “They also are less stressed and have fewer anxiety disorders when they visit parks.”

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“Work Out” Your Hot Flashes Menopausal women who exercise may experience fewer hot flashes in the 24 hours following physical activity, according to Steriani Elavsky, associate professor of kinesiology, and colleagues. “Some people think that performing physical activity could increase hot flashes because it increases body temperature,” says Elavsky. “But our research shows that this is not true. On average, the women in our study experienced fewer hot flash symptoms after exercising.”

Binge-Eating Disorders Roughly four million Americans regularly binge eat to the point of feeling sick. Repeated bingeing on fatty food may change patterns of neural signaling in the brain in a manner similar to that which occurs during drug use, according to research on rats conducted by Professor of Nutritional Neuroscience Rebecca Corwin. “These changes in the brain could perpetuate the bingeing behavior and may explain why binge-eating disorder is so difficult to treat,” she says. “What’s particularly interesting is that only rats with restricted access to a fatty treat a few times a week will binge on the treat. Rats that get to eat a little of the treat every day don’t binge and don’t show the same changes.”

Symptoms of Binge-Eating Disorder Provided by the Mayo Clinic

• Eating unusually large amounts of food • Eating even when you’re full or not hungry • Eating rapidly during binge episodes • Eating until you’re uncomfortably full • Frequently eating alone • Feeling that your eating behavior is out of control • Feeling depressed, disgusted, ashamed, guilty, or upset about your eating • Losing and gaining weight repeatedly, also called yo-yo dieting If you or a loved one has any symptoms of binge-eating disorder, seek medical help as soon as possible.

For Healthy Weight Loss, Ditch the Diet The Atkins Diet, the Paleolithic Diet, the Cabbage Soup Diet. Some of us have tried every fad diet out there in an attempt to lose weight and keep it off. Yet, according to Penny Kris-Etherton, Distinguished Professor of Nutrition, people might have better success if they think NOT in terms of dieting, but rather on eating healthful foods over their lifetime. “That means eating a lot of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, skim-milk dairy products, lean meats, and a small amount of liquid vegetable oil,” says Kris-Etherton. “It also means avoiding high-calorie snacks. Certainly they can be incorporated in small amounts in a healthy diet, but if you focus on eating the healthier foods, you might naturally eat fewer sweets and treats.” Kris-Etherton says if you feel you really need the structure of a diet, check out the research-based DASH Diet, which emphasizes eating healthful foods in three meals and two snacks a day. Kris-Etherton recently served on a panel of scientists that ranked the diet at the top of the list in a U.S. News & World Report diet ranking.

Take a dip Can’t get your kids to eat their vegetables? Try offering the veggies with a side of dip. Research by Jennifer Savage Williams, associate director of the Center for Childhood Obesity Research, showed that more kids like vegetables when they are paired with a yummy dip compared to vegetables without a dip. “Just because children refuse to taste a vegetable doesn’t mean they don’t like it,” Savage says. “It’s foreign—the key is to try to get them to taste it in a positive light.”

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YOU & YOUR Nutrition

Nutrition Concerns in your

20s, 40s, & 60s As we age, our calorie needs and nutrient requirements change. Lynn Parker Klees, instructor in the Department of Nutritional Sciences, shares tips on how to eat healthfully in your 20s, 40s, and 60s.

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You may be working long hours, making new friends and dating, and possibly getting married and having children. Life is unpredictable, yet grabbing meals on the go often means taking in more calories and fewer nutrients. • When eating in restaurants, take half of the portion home. • Aim to have fruits and vegetables constitute half of your plate at lunch and dinner. • Substitute fruit for dessert most of the time. • When you need a quick meal, pick up healthy convenience foods like rotisserie chicken, instant brown rice, and frozen vegetables. • Reduce sugar-sweetened beverages and substitute water or no-calorie beverages. • Moderate alcohol consumption—one serving per day for women and two servings per day for men.


Life is hectic and you may not notice your metabolism starting to slow down. Watch out for increased belly fat as a result of dropping estrogen levels for women and long hours sitting for both men and women. • Find ways to add movement during the day. Get up early to go to the gym, take off during your lunch break to walk or bicycle, or jog or walk around the soccer field during your kids’ games. • Add strength training to slow the inevitable loss of muscle mass with aging. • Calorie needs drop as we get older. Cut 100 calories a day from your pre-40 diet. For every decade after 40, we need about 1 percent fewer calories, or the equivalent of a cookie. • Limit extra fats and sugars to about 100-150 calories per day.


You may be looking forward to increasing your physical activity in retirement or you may be slowing down due to injuries or chronic health problems. Despite your fitness level, your calorie needs have decreased while your nutrient needs have stayed the same or increased. • If you live alone, try to halve recipes or freeze in small portions for later use to avoid eating spoiled leftovers. • As we age, our thirst mechanism decreases but our fluid needs are maintained. Drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration. • People in their 60s need more protein to maintain their muscles. Choose lean meats, fish, beans, nuts, and tofu, and eat them throughout the day. • Beware of losing too much weight. People who are underweight and undernourished don’t fare as well when faced with illness and injury.


Percentage of Americans who are overweight.


Percentage of Americans who are projected to be obese, not just overweight, by 2030.

Source: Gordon Jensen, professor and head of the Department of Nutritional Sciences

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YOU & YOUR Health care

The Affordable Care Act: A Primer One in seven Americans does not have health insurance. When they do, the average family’s health insurance costs more than $15,000 per year. The Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), which was signed into law in 2010, promises to increase and improve health insurance coverage and reduce the cost of health care. How will this benefit you? According to Pamela Farley Short, professor of health policy and administration, it depends on who you are. Below, Short summarizes the primary provisions of Phase I and II of the Affordable Care Act, as it has evolved with Supreme Court decisions, stateby-state decisions about participation, and the Obama administration’s interpretation and implementation of the law.

Phase I (now in effect ) Insurer Limitations Preventive Care Prescription Drugs Young People Small Businesses Lifetime Limits Pre-Existing Conditions High-Risk Patients

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Insurers are limited in how they spend premium dollars; if too little goes into health care for their customers, they must give some of it back through rebates. No additional costs for preventive care, like screenings and vaccinations, for anyone with health insurance. People on Medicare who use a lot of prescription drugs pay less for them. Young people can stay on their parents’ policies up to age 26. Some small businesses get tax breaks to help them buy insurance for their employees. No more lifetime limits on health insurance. Insurance companies can’t turn kids down because of pre-existing conditions, like asthma and diabetes. High-risk pools supported by the government were set up to cover the sickest of the uninsured, even before the big expansions in health insurance scheduled for 2014.

Phase II (effective as of January 1, 2014) Medicaid

States have the option of expanding Medicaid to cover all low-income people, with the federal government picking up the entire cost for three years and then slowly shifting 10 percent to the states by 2020. Because of the Supreme Court ruling, states also have the option of leaving Medicaid unchanged and poor people uninsured.

Low-income Families

Tax credits are available to offset health insurance costs of anyone without Medicaid or access to affordable employment-based health insurance if their family income is between 100 percent and 400 percent of the federal poverty line (between $23,000 and $94,000 for a family of four). Lower-income families in this range get more help than higher-income families.

Marketplace Exchange

People with no option to get health insurance through work can buy it through an online marketplace, organized by their state or by the federal government on behalf of their state.

No Rejections

Insurers cannot turn people down or charge them more if they are sick.

Insurance Requirement Large Businesses

Everyone is required to have insurance. Those who don’t must pay a special tax that is relatively small in 2014 but increases in subsequent years. Starting in 2015, larger businesses will pay special taxes if they don’t insure their full-time workers.

The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation was an important source of information in compiling these lists.

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YOU & YOUR Relationships

How to connect with kids at any age Greg Fosco, assistant professor of human development and family studies and the Karl R. and Diane Wendle Fink Early Career Professor for the Study of Families, explains two of the most important ways parents can connect with their kids. Focus on positive behavior—Rather than focus on corrective feedback and nagging, parents can praise their kids’ good behavior, notice their successes, and make a point of helping them understand when they are meeting expectations or behaving appropriately. Strive for a ratio of three praises for every one corrective statement. Be a good listener—Children’s disclosures provide a range of opportunities for parents, such as problem-solving difficult peer interactions or learning about challenges their children are having with classwork. Parents are wise to take advantage of any opportunity to learn with whom their children are spending time and what happens while they are unsupervised. The most skillful parents are non-reactive listeners who ask questions like, “What happened next?” or “How did you respond?” or “Was that scary?” which can help kids open up.

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“Should I allow my teenager to drink alcohol at home?”


“Many parents believe if they provide alcohol early it takes the mystery away and their kids are less likely to drink outside the home, but research shows that when the first drink is provided within the home, kids are more likely to drink more heavily and frequently,” says Robert Turrisi, professor of biobehavioral health.

39.8 million

Caring For Older Family Members 39.8 million. That’s the number of Americans over age 15 who provided unpaid care to someone over age 65 during a three-month period in 2012, according to a Bureau of Labor Statistics report. Distinguished Professor and Head of the Department of Human Development and Family Studies Steven Zarit gives some tips on how to manage the stress of caring for aging family members: • Get the information you need. Information about your relative’s condition and the options you have for providing care will help a lot. • Connect with other caregivers in a support group or on-line chat, share ideas about what works, and give support to one another. • Ask for help when you need it. • Get regular breaks from caregiving. My research has shown that adult day service programs have therapeutic benefits for their clients, while also reducing stress and improving well-being of caregivers. • If you feel upset and don’t know what to do, a social worker or psychologist with training in caregiving can be very helpful.

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Paul Hazi


School of Hospitality Management

The CFI’s texture analyzer measures the firmness of various foods.

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Paul Hazi

Limp and Soggy or Firm and Crispy? The Center for Food Innovation helps companies improve the nutritional value of their food products. When it comes to French fries, most people agree—it’s all about the texture. That’s why food companies are lining up to have their fries analyzed by staff of the Center for Food Innovation (CFI) at Penn State. “The center is equipped to test combinations of potatoes and oils with the goal of creating the perfect fry—one that has not only great texture and taste, but also absorbs less oil, thereby reducing the overall calorie content,” says Peter Bordi, associate professor of hospitality management and director of the CFI. Established in 2003, the CFI aims to help companies—especially those based in Pennsylvania—to create more healthful foods. Specifically, its staff conducts research in the areas of new product development, nutrition and health, food safety, culinary science, ergonomics, marketing, and consumer behavior. Customers have included McCormick, Cargill, Nestlé, Olive Garden Italian Restaurants, Sheetz, Snyders of Hanover, Dairy Queen, and numerous others.

The Perfect Fry In the research kitchen of the CFI, the bright-yellow machine lies in wait as the research technician carefully places a golden wedge of potato onto a disk at the machine’s front. The texture analyzer whirs to life as the disk rises, gently compressing the fry against another disk. Data, indicating the fry’s firmness, appear on the screen of an adjacent computer. Bordi explains that to get perfectly firm French fries, you must match up particular grades of potato with particular grades of oil. “A few years ago,” he says, “Chick-fil-A came to us wanting to use the peanut oil that they use to fry their chicken to make their waffle fries. To be honest, the fries were not very good. So we tested a canola oil blend that makes them really good. There are hundreds of possible combinations of potato and oil, and it takes research to find the best one.” For Cargill, alone, the CFI has performed over 60 oil tests. “In the first really big year, we fried over 36,000 pounds of fries developing

oil for Cargill; we also fried over 30,000 dozen doughnuts working to develop trans-fat-free oils,” says Bordi, who notes that the School of Hospitality Management at Penn State is the only such school in the United States to run a center like the CFI. Bordi says that the services the center provides enable companies to make unbiased improvements to their foods. “We do the research blindly,” he says. “So in the case of oils, we don’t know what they are when we’re testing them. With Cargill, for example, we unveil the oils together and then we match up the codes to find out what’s what. We’re great as a team because we look at the issue from different perspectives.” According to Bordi, laboratory research, such as that conducted using the texture analyzer, is just one service that the CFI provides. The center also has the ability to bring together groups of people to taste various products.

“There are hundreds of possible combinations of potato and oil, and it takes research to find the best one.”

- Peter Bordi

Healthful Snacks In January of 2012, as part of a project with Knouse Foods, researchers from the CFI lugged boxes of applesauce and plastic cups into the lobby of a local middle school. They set up a folding table and filled cups with applesauce, each flavored with a fruit (either tropical, mixed berry, or strawberry-banana flavors) and a vegetable (carrots and/or cucumbers). One hundred and six 7th graders lined up to taste the applesauces. Each one was given all three flavors and asked to rate them based on overall liking, overall appearance, appearance of texture, ap-

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School of Hospitality Management The CFI has worked with dozens of companies to improve the nutritional value of their food products.

The CFI created a chocolate milk recovery drink for use by Penn State athletes. pearance of color, taste, mouth feel, amount of fruit flavor, and amount of sweetness. The team repeated the test with 120 adults on the Penn State University Park campus. “We found that both adults and children rated all of the applesauce flavors favorably, suggesting that bringing such products to market could be an effective method for helping adults and children consume more fruits and vegetables,” says Bordi. The study was published in the April 2013 issue of the journal Food and Nutrition Sciences. In a new project with Disney, CFI staff members are developing some healthful snack foods for the company’s resorts. “We’re working on some products—such as gummy bears that are all-natural and contain 50-percent less sugar—that you may perceive as junk, but we’re making them healthier,” says Bordi. “Your children are happy and you are happy.”

A Chocolate Milk For All Occasions Making foods more healthful for children is the goal of a project that began in 2012 with Ron Deis, director of global sweetener development at Ingredion Incorporated. “Milk is an important product for children nutritionally,” says Deis. “But it is well established that they prefer chocolate milk over white milk. Unfortunately, the chocolate milk on the market today can contain 24 to 35 grams of sugar per 8-ounce serving, whereas white milk contains about 12 grams of sugar (from lactose) per 8-ounce serving. Our goal was to use natural sweeteners to create a chocolate milk with significantly lower sugar content that maintains a taste parity with a full-sugar product. Because of CFI’s activity in School Lunch Program projects, we were able to test this with 7th graders, and we actually established a preference for the lower sugar product using stevia, a natural high-potency sweetener.”

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Paul Hazi (3)

The CFI brings together groups of people to taste various products. Here, a study participant tastes a sandwich from Cumberland Farms. According to Bordi, this research will be published in the Journal of Culinary Science and Technology in January 2014. Chocolate milk also was the focus of a CFI project conducted in collaboration with the Penn State football team. The aim of this project was to provide the players with a natural food supplement as opposed to an artificial supplement for use in recovering from intense workouts. “We wanted to build and expand on a great source of calories our student athletes already enjoy and we knew they would readily consume,” says Tim Bream ’83 H P E, director of Athletic Training Services and head football athletic trainer. “Once the proper type of proteins was identified and the appropriate proportion of proteins-per-serving, based on the NCAA nutritional guidelines, was formulated, it was taste-tested by our athletes.” Today, Penn State student athletes in many of the varsity sports regularly consume the drink, which is made by the Penn State Creamery.

Helping Local Companies Bordi’s goal of helping local organizations doesn’t stop with Penn State Athletics. A major component of the CFI’s mission is to provide assistance to Pennsylvania-based companies. “I grew up in Scranton, which was heavily dependent on coal mining and railroads at the time,” he says. “As a kid, I remember how great it was, but now you see these companies struggle and many go out of business. I think it’s important to help Pennsylvania’s companies stay in business.” One of those Pennsylvania companies is Benzel’s Pretzel Bakery located in Altoona. “We have been working with Penn State for well over a year now reformulating a product for a specific customer type,” says Ann Benzel, owner. “While I cannot go into the details, I can say that it relates to providing a healthy,

desirable snack for kids and adults. Working with the CFI at Penn State makes it easier to step out of your comfort zone and make changes that you are sometimes reluctant to make. Their sensory-based studies have been valuable tools in defining and understanding consumer needs and are essential in targeted product design and development.” Keith Boston—who is currently the director of food service at Cumberland Farms, Inc., but who began working with the CFI when he worked at Sheetz—agrees. “The CFI has been an important gate keeper for my product development for the past ten years,” he says. “It lets me give empirical feedback to my vendors or my potential vendors and takes all subjectivity out of it. For me, Pete has become a trusted resource. He keeps me abreast of what’s happening in foodservice over the next twenty years. He looks deep into the future for me so I can take care of the near future. I have been satisfied in every way with our relationship and have seen the sophistication of both the testing and the data get richer and richer every year.” Not only does the CFI aim to help local companies with their food products, but it also seeks out opportunities to partner with those that do not produce food. For example, the center’s sensory laboratory was designed, built, and outfitted by InterMetro, a company based in Wilkes-Barre. “We work with an enormous amount of small- to middle-sized companies, with 100 employees or less,” says Bordi. “Most of them don’t have facilities where they can do sensory work. We have that here. We also have a great variety of people that we can bring in to taste-test foods. We’re able to help these companies, and that is important.” n

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School of Hospitality Management Paul Hazi (2)

Jasmyn Franklin (senior)

Beyond the Book Students in the School of Hospitality Management are prepared for a variety of careers through a combination of in-class learning and hands-on experience. “The application of classroom learning to professional practice is crucial to the education of students preparing for careers within the School of Hospitality Management,” said John O’Neill, director of the School of Hospitality Management. “The Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Management (HRIM) curriculum offers numerous practical opportunities that enable students to strengthen and demonstrate their practical skills in a variety of professional environments.” Here, three students share what they learned in their summer internships.

Where she worked: I spent the summer in McLean, Virginia [a suburb of Washington, D.C.], interning at the Hilton Worldwide Corporate Headquarters in the area of campus recruiting. The goal of campus recruiting is to attract top talent from the most prestigious hospitality university programs across the nation. Hilton partners with these schools and identifies them as “core colleges.” How she got the internship: I received the internship through the National Society of Minorities in Hospitality (NSMH). Last year, I served as the national northeast regional chair of NSMH. What she did: One of my duties included re-vamping the information session deck that is used on all college campuses to give students a better understanding of Hilton’s culture and what it has to offer. I also managed a film crew to create videos to enhance the careers website. What she learned: Throughout the summer, we had corporate intern events, which included a Crab Fest at Chris Nassetta’s home [CEO of Hilton Worldwide] and a Nationals’ baseball game. Through these events, I developed a better understanding of a casual work setting. During my internship, I led a community service event and an executive speaker series, and I facilitated an effective networking workshop, all of which enhanced my leadership skills. How she will benefit: This internship expanded my human resource knowledge. It also further confirmed my passion for the hospitality industry and, specifically, for human resources. Her career goals: My goal is to obtain a corporate human resources position for a hospitality company and eventually lead a team as a chief human resources officer.

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Penn State

Jessie Glassmire (senior)

Christine Li (junior)

Where she worked: I worked at New Castle Hotels & Resorts, a hotel management, ownership, and development company with over 30 hotels in the United States and Canada. I worked in their corporate office based in Shelton, Connecticut.

Where she worked: I did my internship at the Riviera Marriott Hotal La Porte de Monaco in Cap-d’Ail, France. The hotel is across the street from the principality of Monaco.

How she got the internship: New Castle came to Penn State during spring semester to conduct interviews. I basically stalked New Castle’s website regularly, drafted a ton of cover letters, asked my adviser a million questions, and practiced interview questions for weeks and weeks before. What she did: As an intern in acquisitions and development, I evaluated potential deals, including hotel conversions, historical renovations, and ground-up development. I also studied various markets and sub-markets across the United States and Canada to identify “hot” markets. I built a database of this market information to store and present market data sets. What she learned:  I learned what I want to do when I graduate! I gained knowledge across the industry spectrum, from professionalism and networking down to fine details of the hotel real estate and finance world. How she will benefit: This internship has prepared me for the hospitality industry outside of the classroom. The skills I developed in this internship are directly applicable to my future career. Her career goals: I will pursue a career in hotel real estate. I particularly liked hotel development. I am also interested in hospitality consulting because you get to work with so many different hotels, markets, and deals.

How she got the internship: I applied for this internship through the School of Hospitality Management. What she did: This was a kitchen internship. For most of the summer, I was a garde manger cook. I worked directly under the chef de partie, making appetizers, specials, and desserts. Occasionally I worked the hot line making entrées. Also, I was responsible for executing smaller-scale catered events. Ultimately, I had the ability to finesse my kitchen skills and focus especially on consistency. What she learned: I mostly learned about leading a team. I took extra time during service and directed the team to make sure everything was done to a high standard. I had the opportunity to create a new mise en place system and new plating/cooking techniques for my cooks to follow. How she will benefit: The internship will help me directly in finding another opportunity at Marriott International if I choose to do so in the future. I am currently in final negotiation stages with a RitzCarlton property in Spain for a three-month internship at their restaurant [two Michelin stars]. Her career plans: In the future, I plan to cook at several globally respected restaurants. My career goal is to eventually become a chef/ owner of a restaurant.

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School of Hospitality Management

Creating Hotels for Hope It all began with a simple belief: that hotel room nights could be turned into social change. “I wanted to use my industry experience to create a socially responsible business model that made a difference in the lives of children,” said Neil Goldman ’05 HR&IM. So in 2008, Goldman founded Hotels for Hope, a for-profit hotel brokerage firm with a charitable arm that partners with hotels to donate $2 for every room night stay toward the firm’s mission of positively affecting the lives of children through health, education, arts, and humanitarian aid. Since its inception, Hotels for Hope has contracted with more than 500 clients and partnered with nearly 1,000 hotels worldwide, totaling more than 80,000 hotel room night stays. To date, the firm and its partnering hotels have contributed more than $160,000 to charities, positively affecting the lives of more than 50,000 children around the world. “I believe a healthy child is a happy child, that education is the foundation for success, that arts provide inspiration for creativity, and that humanitarian aid is key in supporting our global community,” said Goldman. In October, Goldman won an award from Empact Showcase, a platform highlighting the power of young entrepreneurs and the important role that they play in solving some of the world’s most pressing issues. Empact Showcase is hosted by the United Nations Foundation. According to Goldman, the concept for Hotels for Hope began in 2008, when he first became involved with Special Olympics Texas (SOTX). He and his colleagues instituted technology for Olympic delegations to secure rooms, and they asked hotels to make a small monetary donation. “Our management saved SOTX time, raised money, and established a volunteer network at every State Game,” he said. “We knew we had a great idea, but it wasn’t until a chance meeting with TOMS Shoes founder Blake Mycoskie that it clicked. TOMS Shoes embodied social responsibility at its finest—buy a pair of shoes and they donate a pair to a child in need. Inspired by the simplicity of its mission, we decided to ask hotels to contribute $1 per consumed room night, which Hotels for Hope then matches, dollar for dollar.” Beyond SOTX, the team reached out to other charities aligned with its philanthropic vision: organizations whose efforts positively affected the lives of children. The concept was simple…when meeting planners, event organizers, or individual travelers booked rooms, they could choose which of the many worthwhile charities they would like to support. Hotels for Hope launched on April

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13, 2010, and in its first year, with the help of 203 hotels and 399 groups, it raised $26,179 for its partner charities. Goldman’s hospitality background began with a degree from Penn State in hotel, restaurant, and institutional management and a minor in business. His hotel experience stems from work in sales, operations, reservations, spas, and accounting within Marriott and Four Seasons. He also explored entrepreneurship with the inception of Austin Hospitality, a solution for overflow hotel demand. During fall 2012, Goldman worked with hotels in central Pennsylvania to raise money for his partner charities during Penn State Graduation Weekend. During that weekend, he said, over 2,000 hotel rooms were occupied by Penn State alumni, parents, and students. Hotels for Hope partnered with the State College hotel community and the Central Pennsylvania Convention and Visitors Bureau to support RAINN (Rape Abuse & Incest National Network). The 23 participating hotels donated $1 per occupied room night between December 15th and 18th. “Penn State’s motto ‘Success with Honor’ continued through the actions of this hotel community,” said Goldman. “At Hotels for Hope, we believe in honesty, in fairness, and in changing lives— one room at a time.” ■ For more information, visit

A “French” Toast to Success Vanilla-infused challah French toast with a fig and pomegranate compote. That is the recipe that Danielle Marullo ’12 HR&IM concocted in just 30 minutes using three mystery ingredients and any other items she could find in the pantry of the Anderson Cooper Live studio. The French toast won Marullo the competition of the special edition of Food Network’s “Chopped,” which was hosted on a recent episode of Anderson Cooper Live. “It was quite an adrenaline rush!” said Marullo, a food and beverage manager at the Peacock Alley Restaurant and Oscar’s Brasserie in New York’s Waldorf Astoria Hotel (operated by Hilton Worldwide). “I was running around the kitchen trying to think on my feet as best as possible, while jumping over television camera cords and trying not to get any of my food stolen by my feisty competitor. It was so much fun getting to meet Ted Allen from Food Network and Anderson Cooper, and have them eat and enjoy my very own creation.” At the Waldorf Astoria Hotel, Marullo is responsible for managing the two restaurants’ staffs and for organizing and facilitating communication before, during, and post service. Ultimately, her job is to ensure that each and every guest receives the best possible service and has a memorable and luxurious experience.

menu engineering, food safety rules and regulations, and more, all of which I utilize on a daily basis.” Marullo’s advice to current SHM students? “Retain everything you learn in your classes,” she said. “There were things that I never thought I would see again in the real world, but they came up in my first week of working at the hotel. Also, maintain your relationships with your fellow classmates and professors; they are terrific references. And network with as many people as possible while you’re in school; it will help you during your job search as well as create business relationships in the future.” In addition to her managerial duties at the Waldorf Astoria, Marullo maintains the hotel’s food and beverage blog, as well as her own restaurant and food blog and Twitter page, where she shares her favorite, unique culinary creations. ■ Learn more about Marullo at Follow Marullo on Twitter @gotroomformore.

“I love to be a part of guests’ dining experience, whether through sharing my favorite menu items with them, telling them where they should go and what they should see in New York City, or simply finding out a little bit about their lives and who they are,” said Marullo. Her success, she added, has had much to do with her experience as a student at Penn State. “The Penn State School of Hospitality Management program was very hands-on, and each class was directly related to the field,” she said. “The program gave me knowledge on topics like hospitality accounting, hospitality marketing, labor laws,

Winter 2013-14 | 19


School of Hospitality Management

New Learning Opportunities for Students To help students learn the skills they need to be competitive in the job market, the School of Hospitality Management is offering some new learning opportunities this year.

Hospitality in Senior Living Course The School of Hospitality Management has offered a course focused on the opportunities and challenges involved in managing continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs) and senior living facilities. The course is taught from a hospitality perspective, and focuses on how the application of hospitality management can bring multiple advantages for senior communities and residents. The multidisciplinary content is team-taught by College of Health and Human Development faculty members who have expertise in designing and delivering services for seniors, including in the areas of long-term care administration, geriatric nursing, adulthood and aging, therapeutic recreation, nutrition and foodservice, and hospitality management. “We have some changes in mind for 2014, including a change in the name of the class to ‘Hospitality in Senior Living,’” said Bart Bartlett, associate professor of hospitality management who co-teaches the course. “The new name reflects the focus of the course on the hospitality perspective.”

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Asset Management Course The new asset management course is being offered as an elective to undergraduate students for the first time in spring 2014 in conjunction with the Hospitality Asset Managers Association. “The course builds on essential financial, lodging, foodservice, and real-estate courses that the students have taken,” said Amit Sharma, associate professor of hospitality management/finance who co-teaches the course. “The main focus is to introduce essential functions of asset management with the purpose of maximizing the profitability and value of these assets for owners in the most cost-effective manner.” According to Sharma, the school has reached out to several constituents, including alumni and industry partners. “While we have received encouraging and positive feedback on our graduating students’ skill sets, one of the areas where we can strengthen our students’ abilities is in developing quantitative skills,” he said. “Furthermore, we also recognize that our students will be managing tangible and intangible assets. This course provides those additional quantitative skills for our students that will make them more effective managers and owners.” “Few hospitality programs offer an opportunity for undergraduate hospitality students to understand the broader picture of asset management,” added John O’Neill, director of the school who co-teaches the course. “This involves recognizing that as managers and owners, they will be responsible for a diverse group of assets, both tangible and intangible. Overall performance of a business depends on how the business manages these assets and maximizes profitability and value of these assets. This course also makes financial management more contextual. Together, these perspectives and related skills will allow our students to better their professional growth, beyond operating a business and managing it to maximize its performance.”

Corporate Social Responsibility Course Seoki Lee, associate professor of hospitality management, is delivering a course on corporate social responsibility (CSR). The course includes discussion of various topics under the umbrella of CSR, including history, current issues, and how to incorporate the concept as a core business strategy in general and in the hospitality industry. “CSR is extremely important in our society right now,” said Lee, whose research focuses on the topic. “I feel obligated to educate students about CSR issues.” In the course, students learn about the CSR issues that society, broadly, and businesses, in particular, face and how to deal with them in a strategic manner. For example, students learn about how CSR impacts companies’ reputations, and how those reputations may influence things like employee recruitment, risk management, and brand differentiation. “I hope to encourage students to incorporate CSR philosophy into their personal and professional lives,” said Lee.

Minor in Entrepreneurship and Innovation Leaders in the school currently are developing a new 18-credit intercollege minor in Entrepreneurship and Innovation, to be offered in conjunction with the School of Engineering and Smeal College of Business. “This specialization will prepare students to create and develop novel, but sound, entrepreneurial concepts related to the hospitality industry in such businesses as hotels/lodging, restaurants/foodservice, and gaming,” said O’Neill. “Students who complete the courses in the minor develop skills in creating business plans, feasibility studies, competitive analysis, supply and demand analysis, market analysis, and financial forecasting.” Courses include hospitality real estate, new product development for commercial foodservice, hospitality entrepreneurship, revenue management, special topics in restaurant management, and independent study in hospitality.

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School of Hospitality Management

2013 Hospitality Executive of the Year Jim Abrahamson, chief executive officer for Interstate Hotels & Resorts, was been named 2013 Hospitality Executive of the Year by the Penn State Hotel & Restaurant Society (PSHRS). Abrahamson received the award during the fifty-second Hospitality Executive of the Year Award Reception, which took place November 10, 2013, in conjunction with the annual International Hotel, Motel and Restaurant Show in New York. As part of the honor, Abrahamson also was inducted into the Penn State Hospitality Hall of Fame, located at The Nittany Lion Inn on Penn State’s University Park campus. “Our alumni and industry advisory boards continue to emphasize to us the importance of our developing students’ leadership skills and abilities,” said John O’Neill, director of the School of Hospitality Management. “We know that for our students to be successful leaders, they should learn from the hospitality industry’s greatest leaders. That’s why we’re so happy that a seasoned leader like Jim has accepted our invitation to spend time with our students discussing his wealth of leadership experiences.” Abrahamson joined Interstate Hotels & Resorts from InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), where he was president of the Americas region, that company’s largest operating unit, and was also an executive director of IHG’s board of directors. Previously, he held key leadership positions in the areas of operations, development, and franchising with Hyatt Corporation, Marcus Corporation, and Hilton Worldwide. Abrahamson is active in the hospitality industry and in community affairs. He currently serves as an executive director on the board of directors of Interstate Hotels & Resorts. He also serves as national chair of the U.S. Travel Association. In addition, Abrahamson is the secretary/treasurer of the American Hotel & Lodg-

22 | Health and Human Development

ing Association (AH&LA) and will serve as association chair beginning in 2015. He is a member of the AH&LA Governmental Affairs and HotelPAC Committees, and is on the advisory board of the Pillsbury Institute for Hospitality Entrepreneurship. He is chairman of the board of directors at the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and is on the advisory board at the Emory University Eye Clinic. Abrahamson holds a degree in business administration from the University of Minnesota. “Recognition as the Penn State Hotel & Restaurant Society’s Hospitality Executive of the Year is a great honor,” said Abrahamson. “The hospitality industry is like no other, where anyone with ambition and initiative, coupled with an outstanding education, can achieve career success. I’m grateful my journey led to Interstate Hotels & Resorts. Through my experience with some of the industry’s leading companies, I have been able to successfully guide our global growth strategy and witness it spring to life. Opening the eyes of Penn State students to similar possibilities is what renders this honor a true privilege.” Interstate Hotels & Resorts is the leading U.S.-based global management company operating nearly 360 hotels with more than 69,000 rooms spanning the United States and 10 additional countries. PSHRS was established in 1948 to strengthen the hospitality profession and to enhance the reputation of the Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Management program in the Penn State School of Hospitality Management. PSHRS and the school created the Hospitality Executive of the Year Award in 1960 to honor individuals who exemplify the successful leadership characteristics that they strive to instill in students and to convey to alumni and colleagues. ■

PSHRS’s Impact Over the past decade, the Penn State Hotel & Restaurant Society (PSHRS), the second-oldest affiliate program group at Penn State, has exhibited vision and zeal in its quest to create support in perpetuity for the School of Hospitality Management’s students. PSHRS’s first undertaking was to support and enrich the educational endeavors of students in the Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Management program, especially student activities sponsored by the student chapter of PSHRS. In January 2003, the PSHRS Endowment Fund was created with gifts totalling $100,000. Only five years later, PSHRS created the largest endowment ever established by a Penn State affiliate program group: The PSHRS Endowment for Pre-Professional Leadership and Hospitality Experiences. The PSHRS raised $250,000 for this initiative, which

just became active this year. Its significance is not only in its size but in its purpose of providing the monies needed for students to participate in pre-professional leadership and hospitality industry experiences as well. Through this endowment, students are able to attend industry conventions and events, such as the National Restaurant Association’s annual show, which allow them to broaden their knowledge and perception of the industry and its career paths. “The students’ exposure to these real-world experiences with industry leaders is a valuable component of their education experience,” said Joseph McCann ’78 HR&IM, who served as the president of PSHRS from 2010 to 2011. “In addition, our students’ proud representation of Penn State’s School of Hospitality Management to these industry leaders brings the school additional relationship, recruiting, partnership, and development opportunities.”

Affiliate Program Group (APG) Update In February, PSHRS held its winter board meeting and strategy forum in conjunction with the Mentoring Kick-off Dinner. Twenty-five alumni mentors participated in this year’s program. To learn more about the college’s Mentoring Program and/or to become a mentor to a SHM undergraduate student, visit

The student chapter of PSHRS held its annual Blue-White Weekend Pig Roast Tailgate on Saturday, April 20. Roughly 150 students, faculty members, and alumni were in attendance. Likewise, more than 50 alumni gathered for the annual Alumni Summer Weekend, featuring the School of Hospitality Management cookout and the Benefield Bash held July 12-14 at the Nittany Lion Inn.

Over 250 students, faculty members, and alumni attended the annual PSHRS Alumni Awards reception on October 9 at the Nittany Lion Inn. Debbie Ulrich ’77 FS HA, president and chief executive officer, Sysco Central Pennsylvania, received the Alumna of the Year Award. The three recipients of the Emerging Undergraduate Professional Award, Dant Hirsch ’03 HR&IM, hotel manager; St. Regis Bal Harbour (Starwood Hotels & Resorts); Alexandra Barton ’06 HR&IM, assistant general manager, Spiaggia (Levy Restaurants); and Katy Goldin ’09 HR&IM, general manager, Homewood Suites by Hilton (Vista Host, Inc.), and the recipient of the Emerging Graduate Professional Award, Amrik Singh ’04g HR&IM, associate professor, Fritz Knoebel School of Hospitality Management, University of Denver, were honored. The Harvey P. Kamp Student Leadership Award was presented to Jasmyn Franklin (senior), national chair for the National Society of Minorities in Hospitality.

The School of Hospitality Management and PSHRS held the 8th annual “Alumni in the Classroom” program in October 2013. Seventy-one alumni returned to speak in the classroom and interact with students in roundtables and panel discussions. In addition, PSHRS hosted several networking receptions for alumni working in the hospitality industry throughout the country. Spring receptions were held in Orlando, Los Angeles, Atlanta, and Washington D.C. Summer receptions where held in Baltimore, San Francisco, Dallas, New York, St. Louis, and Philadelphia. Please be sure to keep your contact information updated with the Penn State Alumni Association at contact_us/update_info. Connect with PSHRS at www.pshrs. org and on Facebook at “Penn State Hotel & Restaurant Society”. For more information about PSHRS, contact the president, Tom Riley ’91 at

The College of Health and Human Development Alumni Society is seeking nominations for its alumni awards. For more information about the awards and to nominate deserving HRIM alumni, visit The PSHRS career opportunities/alumni job board (www.hhd. receives an average of 200 management position postings each year. In addition, PSHRS collaborates with the School of Hospitality Management to publish a monthly e-newsletter. Past issues can be viewed at

Winter 2013-14 | 23

Older adults learn to Skype with help from Penn State students The moment she laid eyes on her beautiful great-granddaughter Sallee Wilkins knew she was in love…with Skype. “My great-granddaughter lives in Italy, and I only get to see her maybe once a year,” said Wilkins, “but with Skype I can watch her grow up.” Wilkins is one of 26 residents of The Village at Penn State, a State College retirement community, to receive a Skype lesson from volunteers Amanda Gresh, undergraduate student in health policy and administration, and Courtney Polenick, graduate student in human development and family studies, since January 2013. The student volunteers decided to teach older adults at The

24 | Health and Human Development

Village to use Skype after learning of their interest in such help from Amy Lorek, research and outreach associate with the Center for Healthy Aging. The center conducts and supports research, outreach, and educational activities focused on promoting health and well-being from early adulthood into later-life. “It’s important to stay connected, whether it is with family or by participating in the community,” said Lorek. “Students and older adults have much to teach each other. Student volunteer opportunities help facilitate conversations between generations and strengthen our connection and sense of community. We can be a happier, healthier community with that exchange. This project helps to connect students to community members while also connecting community members with their families.”

< Penn State students Amanda Gresh (left) and Courtney Polenick (right) help Annetta Pierce (middle), a resident at The Village at Penn State, learn to Skype. Lorek introduced Gresh and Polenick to Kellie Vogt, a resident of The Village and self-described “techy,” who helped the students to train other interested residents. “I’ve always had a knack for solving tech-related problems,” said Vogt. “When dining with fellow residents, I often hear comments like, ‘I can’t get my email,’ or ‘My daughter replaced my old printer with a new one, but I don’t know how it works.’ I leave the meal thinking, ‘I could fix that.’” Vogt’s own children and grandchildren live out of state, so she has experienced firsthand the joy of visiting with them via Skype. “Since my oldest son, his wife, and his three children moved to Wyoming last year, I’ve toured their new home and visited with them on Thanksgiving, Christmas, and birthdays, all via Skype,” she said. “The face-to-face conversation that Skype enables  is superior to a phone call, text message, or email.”

Nancy Gamble, a resident at The Village at Penn State, talks about how her lessons in Skype enabled her to talk with family members while they were on vacation in Mexico.

Room Service Since January, the team has been meeting with residents of The Village in their homes to give them one-on-one tutorials in Skype. In March, Gresh and Polenick met with Annetta Pierce and Mary Gundel ’46 PH ED, ’53 M.Ed., the twenty-fifth and twenty-sixth residents to receive the training. The students were greeted at the door of the apartment by the women’s toy poodle and were quickly welcomed inside. Pierce, a former Harrisburg School District guidance counselor, was particularly interested in using Skype to talk with her nephew and his family in Camden, Maine. “We visit him in Maine from time to time, but it would be so nice to see him more frequently,” she said. The Penn State students quickly got to work showing Pierce how to operate Skype. They then helped her practice dialing out and receiving calls. When they were finished with the lesson, they left the women with a handout containing step-by-step instructions and an invitation to contact them if they had questions.

and we couldn’t go, so we Skyped with them. They could pick up their laptops and show us around the apartment where they were staying and around the pool and beach. One daughter I talk to almost every week by Skype.” “I thought I couldn’t learn how to do it,” said Wilkins, “but slowly I am learning, and if I can learn anybody can.” But of all those involved, the students have, perhaps, benefitted the most. “Skype opens up the opportunity for people to have more face-to-face communication with their families,” said Polenick, who is studying adult development and aging with a focus on family relationships. “By participating in this volunteer work I hope to understand the potential for Skype to assist in maintaining and enhancing family relationships.” Gresh, too, is interested in working with older adults in her future career. Her goal is to become a nursing home administrator. “I’ve always felt at home working with older adults,” she said. “I really appreciate the wisdom they have to share.”

The residents who have participated with Gresh, Polenick, and Vogt in the Skype program each have their own story to tell about how they have benefitted.

Both students, as well as Vogt, plan to continue to help other residents of The Village learn to use Skype.

“I have used it to reconnect with a couple of my high school friends,” said Nancy Gamble ’52 H EC, ’55g CD FR. “Also, at Christmas time, our kids were going to Mexico

“The program is such a wonderful way for older adults to stay connected with their families,” said Gresh. “It feels really good to be able to help them do this.” n

Winter 2013-14 | 25

Biobehavioral Health Building Dedication Food, music, and cheerful chatter filled the halls and meeting spaces of the Biobehavioral Health Building on September 12, when faculty and staff members, alumni, and friends gathered to dedicate the new building. The event began with remarks from Ann C. Crouter, Raymond E. and Erin Stuart Schultz Dean of the College of Health and Human Development; Rodney A. Erickson, president; and Paul H. Silvis â&#x20AC;&#x2122;06g BUS, vice chair of the Board of Trustees. Following the presentations, guests were given a chance to tour the building, peruse posters describing faculty and student research, and listen to live music by the band Pure Cane Sugar. Photos taken by Paul Hazi Photography

Edna Bennett Pierce Prevention Research Center Dedication Philanthropist Edna Bennett Pierce ’53 H EC has supported prevention research at Penn State for nearly two decades. The college recently honored her transformational support by naming the Prevention Research Center in her honor. A dinner was held on September 13, 2013, to commemorate the dedication of the Edna Bennett Pierce Prevention Research Center. Bennett Pierce’s longstanding support of the center began in 1994 when she and her late husband, C. Eugene Bennett ’52 SCI, endowed the Edna Peterson Bennett Faculty Chair in Prevention Research, held by Mark T. Greenberg, founding director of the center. Edna continued her support by establishing the Bennett Endowment for Children and Adolescents and the C. Eugene Bennett Chair in Prevention Research. The Edna Bennett Pierce Prevention Research Center serves as a catalyst for the development and implementation of collaborative projects among Penn State faculty and Pennsylvania community members. The Prevention Research Center’s purpose is to promote healthy social and emotional development and to prevent problems Ann C. Crouter, dean, Ednafailure Bennett and Mark Greenberg, founding of social and academic in Pierce, children and youth.

director of the Prevention Research Center.

A. Duer “Bud” Pierce and Edna Bennett Pierce

Celebration of Scholarship Recipients On September 15, the College of Health and Human Development celebrated its student scholarship recipients and the generous donors who are responsible for making these scholarships available. Around 125 students participated in the event, which included a breakfast and a presentation by Suzanne Martin ’74 CRS. “My mom struggled financially to enable me to finish school,” said Martin, who created the Joanne Durrwachter Finke Memorial Trustee Scholarship. “When I graduated, I promised myself I would pay her back. I never got the chance because soon after I graduated, she died of a rare auto-immune disease. Shortly after her death, I started giving to Penn State as a way to honor her memory.” Students at the celebration had the opportunity to talk with donors and share their gratitude for the financial assistance that has made it possible for them to pursue their dreams. “Meeting Ricardo Ortiz, who is a current recipient of my scholarship, was exciting,” said Martin. “With his Penn State education, Ricardo will be wellequipped to make a difference in the lives of others.”

SHM students, donors, and faculty members

Adam Fenton, Janet Atwood, and Mary Grace Hill

Dean Crouter addresses the group

Suzanne Martin

Development Council Update

Mary E. Good (left) and Elizabeth J. Susman (right)

Scholarship recipient Jasmyn Franklin

Dear Friends, The people supporting For the Future: The Campaign for Penn State Students are inspired to give for a variety of reasons—a professor whose mentoring steered them toward a successful career; the financial aid that enabled them to receive a Penn State education; the opportunity to help the college attract the best and brightest junior faculty; or the chance to support research to improve the lives of children, youth, and families. While individual motivation for giving may vary, the overarching reason our alumni and friends support this campaign is simple—they believe in Penn State.

Stan Mayers talks with scholarship recipient Nicholas Santone

The top priority of the campaign has been to increase scholarship support, making a Penn State education a possibility for all students, regardless of economic background. As the campaign comes to a close this spring, we hope that if you have not had the opportunity to participate, you will join us. A commitment to the For the Future campaign is a commitment to ensuring generations to come will have the opportunity to experience the Penn State we all know and love. For the Glory, Mary E. Good ’85 I F S Elizabeth J. Susman ’71 I F S, ’73g, ’76g HD FS Campaign Committee Co-Chairs

For more information on how you can lend your support to the campaign, contact Kathleen Rider at or 814-865-1064.

Christina Ellis, Alyssa Hischak, Nicole Phillips, and Valerie Katulka Photos taken by Jennifer N. Sloss, Blink of an Eye Photography

Health and Human Development New Faculty Sy-Miin Chow

Carter Hunt

Associate Professor of Human Development and Family Studies

Assistant Professor of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Management

Sy-Miin Chow’s research focuses on study methodology, with particular emphasis on investigating the development and adaptation of modeling and analysis tools that are suited to evaluating linear and nonlinear dynamical systems models, including longitudinal structural equation models and state-space modeling techniques. Prior to joining the faculty at Penn State, she was an assistant professor of psychology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill from 2007 to 2012. She earned a Ph.D. degree in quantitative psychology at the University of Virginia.

In his research, Carter Hunt investigates tourism-supported biodiversity conservation, sustainable community development, impacts of tourism on both destination communities and on travelers, and environmental anthropology. He earned a bachelor’s degree at the University of Kentucky and master’s and Ph.D. degrees at Texas A&M University. He conducted postdoctoral research at Stanford University.

Christopher Engeland Assistant Professor of Biobehavioral Health

Christopher Engeland’s research focuses on how factors such as stress, age, gender, and hormones affect immunity, inflammation, and health. He also examines the feasibility of biomarkers for predicting health outcomes. Prior to joining the faculty at Penn State, Engeland was an assistant professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago since 2008. He earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Carleton University in Ontario and a Ph.D. degree at the University of Western Ontario.

Naleef Fareed Assistant Professor of Health Policy and Administration

Naleef Fareed’s research focuses on health care topics related to organizational theory, information technology, and patient safety. He earned a bachelor’s degree in management at Hartwick College, a master of business administration degree in health care management at Union Graduate College, and a Ph.D. degree in health services organization and research at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Helen Kamens Assistant Professor of Biobehavioral Health

In her research, Helen Kamens seeks to identify genetic mechanisms that contribute to complex behaviors with a special emphasis on alcohol and tobacco use. She was an assistant research professor at the University of Colorado from 2012 to 2013. She earned a bachelor’s degree in biobehavioral health at Penn State and a Ph.D. degree in behavioral neuroscience at Oregon Health & Science University.

Ji Min Lee Assistant Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders

Ji Min Lee’s research goal is to examine and expand the foundational research on speech production and clinical application of that research to speakers with speech disorders. In particular, she examines the relationship between articulatory acoustics and kinematics, the development of various speech subsystems and their control in children with and without motor speech disorders, and identification of comprehensive production variables that predict speech intelligibility in young children with speech disorders. She received a Ph.D. degree at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2010.

Alison Gernand

Seoki Lee

Assistant Professor of Nutritional Sciences

Associate Professor of Hospitality Management

Alison Gernand’s research focuses on micronutrient deficiencies, pregnancy, fetal and placental growth, and child growth. She received a master of public health degree at the University of Texas at Houston’s School of Public Health in 2003 and a Ph.D. degree at the John’s Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health in 2011.

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Seoki Lee’s research focuses on corporate social responsibility, internationalization, and financial distress and equity valuation. Before coming to Penn State, he served on the faculty at Temple University. He earned bachelor’s and master’s degree at Michigan State University, and a Ph.D. degree at Penn State.

Larry Martinez

Gregory Shearer

Assistant Professor of Hospitality Management

Associate Professor of Nutritional Sciences

Larry Martinez’s research examines employee diversity and employee retention and turnover. Specifically, he investigates stigmatization, prejudice, and discrimination across the spectrum of employment experiences, particularly from the target’s perspective. He also researches the role of non-stigmatized allies in reducing discrimination. He earned bachelor’s, master’s, and Ph.D. degrees at Rice University.

Kristina Neely

In his research, Gregory Shearer seeks to understand disease-related functional changes in lipid mediators—bioactive metabolites of dietary fatty acids that act on tissues to alter many disease-related functions, including the stiffness of blood vessels and the body’s response to stress. He uses lipid mediators to identify markers of disease and better ways to prevent or manage disease. He earned a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry at the University of California, Riverside, and master’s and Ph.D. degrees in human physiology and nephrology, respectively, at the University of California, Davis.

Assistant Professor of Kinesiology

Kristina Neely’s research focuses on understanding how the central nervous system organizes the preparation, execution, and inhibition of skilled, purposeful actions. She is especially interested in how the brain mediates precision grasping by the hand. Neely earned a bachelor’s degree at the University of Minnesota, a master’s degree at Indiana University, and a Ph.D. degree at the University of Western Ontario. She conducted postdoctoral research at the University of Florida.

Peter Newman Professor and Head of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Management

Peter Newman’s research focuses on the human dimensions of natural resource management and social carrying capacity decision making in the context of protected areas management. In particular, he studies visitor management in protected areas, soundscape/acoustic management in parks, transportation management and planning, and efficacy and communication of “leave no trace” principles. He earned a bachelor’s degree in political science at the University of Rochester, a master’s degree in forest resource management at the State University of New York, and a Ph.D. degree in natural resources at the University of Vermont.

Jennie Noll Professor of Human Development and Family Studies

Jennie Noll’s research examines the bio-psychosocial consequences of childhood sexual abuse, pathways to teen pregnancy and high-risk sexual behaviors for abused and neglected youth, the long-term adverse health outcomes for victims of sexual abuse, and the propensity for abused and neglected teens to engage in high-risk internet and social media behaviors. She received a Ph.D. degree in developmental psychology and statistical methodology from the University of Southern California. She then spent eight years at the National Institutes of Health in Washington, D.C., before going to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, where she spent ten years as a professor of pediatrics.

Chad Shenk Assistant Professor of Human Development and Family Studies

Chad Shenk focuses on longitudinal pathways from child maltreatment to the onset of psychological disorders in childhood, adolescence, and young adulthood. He also conducts experimental and observational research to identify the mechanisms of various psychological disorders in the child maltreatment population across multiple levels of analysis. From 2010 to 2013, Shenk was an assistant professor of pediatrics at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. He earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology at Penn State and a Ph.D. degree in clinical psychology at the University of Nevada, Reno.

Matam Vijay-Kumar Assistant Professor of Nutritional Sciences

In his research, Matam Vijay-Kumar examines host metabolic adaptations to inflammation, innate immunity-gut microbiotal interactions in metabolic diseases, and iron homeostasis in inflammation. Before joining the faculty at Penn State, he was an assistant professor of biology at Georgia State University. He earned a Ph.D. degree in biochemistry at the Central Food Technological Research Institute in Mysore, India, in 2002.

Photos by Paul Hazi (12) and Chuck Fong, Studio2 Photography (2)

Winter 2013-14 | 31

Benedick Brothers Pay it Forward

Jeff (left) and Jim (right) Benedick created the Benedick Family Scholarship in the College of Health and Human Development and the College of Engineering with the goal of helping students to realize their academic dreams, just as others helped them. The Benedick Family Scholarship in the College of Health and Human Development and the Benedick Family Scholarship in the College of Engineering will provide recognition and financial assistance to outstanding undergraduate students in those colleges. “I wanted to give other young people an opportunity to move forward with their lives,” said Jeff ’72 CRS. “But I also wanted to honor my family and everyone who raised me and gave me the encouragement and guidance to move on with my life and have it be wonderful.” Jeff credits his education at Penn State with preparing him to establish a successful and rewarding career in interior design. For 25 years, he ran Saddleback Homes, an interior design company specializing in model homes for builders. Today, he enjoys creating interior designs for high-end private residences internationally. “Being from York, Pa., back in the late 1960s, I thought that was all there was,” said Jeff. “I was somewhat isolated. At Penn State, being exposed on the university campus to different cultures and different ways of living was eye opening for me. Now I’ve been all over the world, which is way beyond what I ever expected in my life and career.” “My brother and I did not come from an affluent family, but we managed a most important achievement:

32 | Health and Human Development

to get a degree from Penn State,” added Jim ’66 ENG. “I have been very fortunate in my education, career, and life, and now it is our desire to assist others to achieve their aspirations and dreams.” Jim, the chief operating officer for ProFun Management Group—which specializes in the management and operation of theme parks, entertainment centers, visitor centers, World Expos, and other leisure-time projects—added, “The opportunity to attend Penn State exposed me to individuals and cultures that empowered me to think way beyond my presumed limits. During my time there I grew tremendously and my excellent education helped propel me into a world that I had never imagined.” Jim’s first job out of college was with the Apollo Moon Program. “I like to say ‘I helped to put a man on the moon!’” he said. His second job was as an industrial engineer at Disneyland. “Since those wonderful experiences, I have had the opportunity to travel the world, consulting with and operating numerous entertainment facilities. I could never have done all of these things without my first major step—getting a great education from Penn State.” Learn more about planned gifts and other ways to support Penn State at do?orgId=5701.

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Health and Human Development magazine - Hospitality Management Edition  

2013-14 winter issue of the College of Health and Human Development's magazine (School of Hospitality Management Edition)