New research published suggesting increasing moderate-intensity activity at work may not decrease total activity

Dr. Jennifer Gay and colleagues recently published an article in Preventive Medicine Reports that found, in a cross-sectional study, adults workers who do more light-intensity activity at work do less activity during their free time. Light-intensity activities at work can include walking from one office to another, from your car to your office, or going to meetings. However, workers who engaged in more moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity, like taking the stairs, did more activity outside of work. Something to think about when planning your next worksite wellness program! Full text of the article can be found here.

PACE Lab Graduate, Rosemary Corriero, Has Capstone Paper Accepted for Publication!

Rosemary Corriero, MPH recently had her Capstone paper accepted for publication. Her manuscript, titled, “HPV Uptake Pre- and Post-Affordable Care Act: Variation by Insurance Status, Race, and Education (NHANES 2006-2014)” will be published in an upcoming issue of the Journal of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology. This paper is an extension of a presentation Rosemary gave at the 2016 Society of Behavioral Medicine  Annual Meeting (more here) and her Capstone project for her MPH. Fellow PACE Lab graduate Ellen Stowe is a co-author on this paper. Congratulations on this fantastic accomplishment!

PACE Lab Students Present Their Research at CURO Symposium

Congratulations to Catriona Geddes, Rhiannon Euhus, and Ginny Lee Olivier presented research projects at the 2017 Center for Undergraduate Research Opportunities (CURO) Symposium!

Catriona’s presentation, Determining Fidelity of the Physical Activity and Learning (PAL) Program, described how closely the teaching activities mirrored those in the original grant and lesson plans. Using data from random direct observations, she found no difference in the fidelity to teaching strategies or student engagement across math, reading, and physical activity games. She did find that student participation more closely followed the plans in reading than in math (p=0.032). There was room for improvement in all subjects. Process evaluation is important for understanding why we may or may not see desired academic achievement outcomes in students participating in PAL. The next step is to generate an overall implementation score that incorporates these fidelity values with dose delivered, dose received, and participant satisfaction.

Rhiannon examined body image dissatisfaction and pressure to look a certain way among Mexican American students participating in aesthetic and non-aesthetic sports in her project, The Association between Body Image Dissatisfaction and Sports Participation in Mexican-American Youth. She found that 80% of the students reported participating in organized sports. Twenty-one percent of the athletes felt pressure to “look a certain way”, with the majority saying the pressure came from friends, not parents, coaches, or judges. Compared with students who did not play sports, aesthetic sport athletes thought they were smaller than their ideal body image (p=0.0263). BMI percentile, sports participation, physical activity, and sex were significant predictors of body image dissatisfaction (p<0.05 for all associations). These findings provide a better understanding of BID among Mexican-American youth; The results may inform parents and coaches how to identify youth who are at most risk, and aid in the creation of programs that mitigate BID.

Ginny Lee’s research, Examining Younger Age at Menarche in Mexican-American Girls, assessed the association between body composition and timing of menarche among Mexican American girls. Girls in this sample attained menarche at a significantly younger age than their mothers by 1.5 years (p=0.000). The relationship between mother’s age at menarche and daughter’s age at menarche was significant after controlling for chronological age and BMI percentile. The relationship between mother’s age at menarche and daughter’s age at menarche did vary by BMI percentile (p=0.008), such that girls who were in a higher BMI percentile had a younger age at menarche relative to their mothers. Similar associations were seen for body fat percentage. As earlier age at menarche has been shown to be associated with greater cardiovascular disease risk, this factor may be considered in prevention efforts.

All three plan to write up their findings and submit papers for peer-reviewed publication.

PACE Lab Is Looking for Workplaces Interested in Health Promotion

Under-desk view of the seated active workstation

The PACE Lab is recruiting for worksites in Georgia to take part in an intervention study to increase physical activity of employees who spend a lot of time sitting at work. Research has linked sitting for long periods of time with a number of health issues, including obesity, cardiovascular disease, and poor mental health. The average American sits nearly 8 hours per day, and much of this sitting happens at work. This project is testing the impact of a seated active workstation with employee sedentary time, mood, and productivity. Please contact Dr. Jennifer Gay for more information, or (706) 542-6698.


Dr. Gay and students featured on UGA’s homepage!

A story featuring Dr. Jennifer Gay’s research, teaching, and student mentoring was posted on the homepage of the University of Georgia’s website today. Dr. Gay discusses what she finds interesting about her research, her teaching style, and some of her favorite things to do in her free time. You can find the full story here. Many thanks to the Clinical and Translational Research Unit ( for their support of Dr. Gay’s research and allowing the photo to be taken in their space!

Congratulations to Rosemary Corriero and Kaitlyn Pannell!

The PACE Lab would like to congratulate Rosemary Corriero and Kaitlyn Pannell on their new positions! Kaitlyn Pannell, MPH is serving as the Newton County Wellness Coordinator, working on an employee wellness program. This position builds on her experience during her MPH internship planning worksite wellness programs for Athens Regional Medical Center.

Rosemary Corriero, MPH is an ORISE Fellow at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. She works in the Office of Infectious Disease in the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Disease, Immunization Services Division. Her main focus is the evaluation of the CDC billables project (, where she utilizes her quantitative and qualitative analysis skills. Hew new position extends the work of her MPH Capstone project examining rates of HPV vaccination before and after the Affordable Care Act.

Congratulations to both of you!

Congratulations to Ellen Wenders, former PACE Team member, on her Presidential Fellowship at USC!

Ellen Wenders, a graduated MPH student under Dr. Jennifer Gay, was awarded the Presidential Fellowship to study physical activity and the built environment with Dr. Andrew Kaczynski and the BEACH Lab at the University of South Carolina. The Presidential Fellowship provides four years of support for doctoral students at the university. Ellen is one of 10 new PhD students to be awarded the Fellowship in the Arnold School of Public Health. Full story from the Arnold School of Public Health here. Congratulations Ellen!