Month: December 2014

From the Director: Looking Forward to a Productive New Semester

Jeff Fisher
CHIP Director Jeff Fisher

The fall semester was an exciting, eventful time at CHIP.

In September, the University announced the nationally renowned Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity is moving from Yale University to UConn, where it will become a center-within-a-center at CHIP. The alignment between UConn and Rudd provides a new platform for researchers to elevate their work on obesity and to make the University a leader in this area. This month, the Rudd Center, including its four core faculty members and nine of its research staff members, will move to its new home at Hartford’s Constitution Plaza, near UConn’s Graduate Business Learning Center and within close proximity to the state legislature.

During the fall semester, CHIP developed four innovative proposals for interdisciplinary health behavior change research in response to the University’s new Academic Vision, which prioritizes health and wellness research. The proposals, one of which would turn the entire Storrs campus into a health behavior change research laboratory, involve a variety of new hard-science partners, including the Schools of Engineering and Pharmacy.

CHIP also held two research networking events designed to foster more new collaborations – the first between researchers at CHIP and the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center (CCMC) and the second between researchers at CHIP and UConn Health’s Psychiatry Department. Both events launched new seed grant competitions for dual-Principal Investigator (PI) teams, where one researcher is from CHIP and the other is from CCMC and Psychiatry respectively. Letters of intent to apply for the joint seed grants were due in early December with full applications due Feb. 6th. The winners will be announced later in the spring semester.

2014 was a very good year for CHIP and we owe all our success – in 2014 and every year – to our wonderful Principal Investigators and our amazing administrative staff! I look forward to an equally productive new year.

Best Regards,

Jeff Fisher

Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor of Psychology

Director, Center for Health, Intervention, and Prevention (CHIP)

Tipping the Scales on Obesity

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that one in three children in the United States are obese or overweight, to the detriment of their health and well-being in both the short and the long-term.

In January, UConn experts on obesity, nutrition, public policy, psychology, agriculture, and economics will be joined by faculty from the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity, to conduct and collaborate on research that addresses the nationwide problem of obesity.

Gaming Safer Sex

UConn interactive digital media expert John Christensen has brought to life a virtual world with artificially intelligent characters so realistic, engaging, and compassionate, they have accomplished something that, to date, in-person health behavior-change interventions have not.

World AIDS Day, December 1st: “Focus, Partner, Achieve: An AIDS-free Generation

Monday, December 1st is World AIDS Day. This year’s theme is “Focus, Partner, Achieve: An AIDS-free Generation”.

Many of CHIP’s researchers have dedicated their careers to improving the lives of those with HIV/AIDS and preventing its spread. Our researchers have engaged in AIDS research across the world, including in in Sub-Saharan Africa, which has the highest incidence of HIV/AIDS in the world.

The AIDS epidemic is not over. Today we acknowledge the hard work and important progress that has been made towards controlling the global AIDS epidemic, while understanding the need for continued action towards reducing the incidence of HIV/AIDS.

HIV/AIDS is still a huge barrier to improvements in health and global development. Across the world, more than 35 million people are living with HIV/AIDS, 3.2 million of whom are children.

To learn more about the importance of year’s theme, view the following message from Dr. Ron Valdiserri, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health Infectious Diseases, and Director of the Office of HIV/AIDS and Infectious Disease Policy at the US Department of Health and Human Services.

For more information and ideas about what you can do this World AIDS Day, please visit:
http://aids.gov/news-and-events/awareness-days/world-aids-day/ .