Harris Lecture to focus on exercise and sport psychology

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Andrea Dunn, senior scientist at Klein Buendel, will present the 2012 Dorothy B. Harris Lecture. Her lecture, titled "Pioneering Opportunities in Exercise and Sport Psychology in the 21st Century," will take place at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 16, in the Bennett Pierce Living Center (110 Henderson Building). The event, sponsored by the Department of Kinesiology in the College of Health and Human Development at Penn State, is free and open to the public.

Dunn's research focuses on behavioral interventions for physical activity for children and adults as well as on exercise as an alternative treatment for mild-to-moderate major depressive disorder in adult men and women. She was a co-investigator and project director of three large clinical trials aimed at testing behavioral interventions for adoption and maintenance of physical activity. She also was the principle investigator of DOSE (Depression Outcomes Study of Exercise), a study examining dose-response effects of exercise as a monotherapy for major depressive disorder. Currently, she serves as principal investigator of two projects: Adapting Exercise Treatment for Depression to Adolescents, funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, and Study of a Naturalistic Process of an Evidence Based Program, funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. She also is working on a project called Choose to Move, which is a tailored physical activity program for mothers to exercise with their babies, and a project called Web-based Family Intervention for Pediatric Obesity, which is designed to be a resource for pediatricians to provide tools to families with overweight children.

Dunn currently is a senior scientist at Klein Buendel, a research firm in Golden, Colo., that specializes in the development and evaluation of programs to change health behavior and prevent chronic disease. Prior to joining Klein Buendel, she served as director of the Behavioral Science Research Group at The Cooper Institute. She is a fellow and former member of the Board of Trustees of The American College of Sports Medicine, a fellow of the Society for Behavioral Medicine, and a member of the American Academy of Health Behavior, the American Public Health Association, and the American College of Lifestyle Medicine.

Dunn earned a master's degree in psychology at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and a doctoral degree in exercise science at the University of Georgia. She was a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center.

The Dorothy V. Harris Lecture Series in Sport Psychology honors Dorothy Harris, a Penn State alumna, a past faculty member, and a pioneer and leader in the fields of sport psychology and women in sport. While at Penn State, she developed one of the first graduate programs in sport psychology in the country. Later, she became the first woman president of the North American Society for the Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity. She received the Distinguished Alumni Award from Penn State in 1982, and in 2004, the Board of Trustees named a residence hall on the University Park campus in her honor. Begun in 1995, the lecture is presented annually in memory of Harris, who passed away in 1991. The lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Tiffany Mayhew at tlm35@psu.edu.

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Last Updated January 31, 2012