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Paper Published on the Impact of a Physical Activity Program on Youth Obesity

Nisha Botchwey examines whether programs encourage change in young people’s exercise habits and perception

Nisha Botchwey, associate dean of Academic Programs at Georgia Tech Professional Education, recently completed a study on the factors affecting youth obesity. As Principal Investigator, Botchwey led her team in the conceptualization, methodology, investigation, and administration of the research which examined how a youth obesity prevention program, specifically the Youth Engagement and Action for Health (YEAH!), affects youth’s perception of obesity and belief in their personal ability to change their habits.

Botchwey’s research was conducted using 13 different sub-scales of study, and included place differences, race/ethnicity differences, and sex differences. African American/Black and Latino youth improved greatly in self-reported nutrition and physical activity after participating in YEAH! Additionally, urban students were the only demographic group who declined in optimism for change and participatory competence after YEAH!, showing that suburban and rural students have a relatively greater belief in their own ability to effect change in themselves.

Botchwey’s paper, entitled “Impact of a youth advocacy policy, systems and environmental change program for physical activity on perceptions and beliefs,” was recently published by ScienceDirect, a leading platform for peer-reviewed scientific literature and research. Read the full paper here.