Health Education for Behavior Change…Why Not?

Panel Discussion

Elizabeth Keida presents panel about using health education strategies with motivational tools

Elizabeth Keida, EdD, MS

Visiting Assistant Professor, State University of New York-Oswego

Amy Bidwell, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Health Promotion and Wellness, State University of New York at Oswego

Laura Campbell-Carapella, EdD, MS

Associate Professor, Ithaca College

Wendy Scinta, MD, MS

Assistant Professor of Family Medicine, SUNY Upstate; Medical Director, Medical Weight Loss of New York; President, Obesity Medicine Association; Founder, BOUNCE Pediatric Obesity Program; Founder/Medical Director-One Stone Technology


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For a wellness intervention to be successful, clear planning and implementation must occur. This panel will address how knowledge alone does not always equate to behavior change and that significant motivational factors must be considered. The most common approach to motivational strategies in program design that positively impact behavior change tend to involve rewards, reminders, and energetic influence. These strategies, when implemented correctly, are effective in motivating individuals for a short period of time, however, the strategies lack the ability to help sustain permanent changes in behavior. Lessons learned from both a university-wide wellness program and a clinical practice will provide insight on how to successfully plan, implement and motivate individuals on managing their weight and improving their overall wellness goals. The utilization of motivational interviewing, rewards systems and accountability via technology will all be addressed as methods to impact positive, and sustainable, behavior change.


Presenter Bio(s):

Dr. Elizabeth Keida received both her M.S. in Science Education and her M.S. in Exercise Physiology from Syracuse University. She recently received her doctorate from St. John Fisher in Executive Leadership in which her dissertation focused on the “Relationship Between College Students’ Knowledge of the Risk Factors for Type 2 Diabetes and Health Behaviors”. Dr. Keida’s research interests are in the area of physical activity, health promotion, and type 2 diabetes. Dr. Keida is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor at the State University of New York at Oswego in the Department of Health Promotion and Wellness where she is performing research in college-aged students to determine the relationship between nutrition and physical activity knowledge and behavior in order to combat diseases associated with type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Additionally, Dr. Keida collaborates with SUNY Upstate Medical University in Orthopedics Surgery to determine the effects of physical activity and diet on musculoskeletal development in young females.


Dr. Amy Bidwell received her Ph.D in Exercise Physiology from Syracuse University. Her research interests involve increasing knowledge as a means to change behaviors of common diseases associated with obesity and metabolic syndrome. Currently, Dr. Bidwell is spear-heading a large behavior change program for college-aged students to increase nutrition, physical activity and stress management habits to combat disease. Dr. Bidwell has published numerous manuscripts; most recently a review article in Nutrients discussing metabolic and cardiovascular ramifications of fructose consumption and physical inactivity. Moreover, she has presented at various national and international conferences. Currently, Dr. Bidwell is an Assistant Professor at the State University of New York at Oswego in the Department of Health Promotion and Wellness.


Dr. Laura Campbell Carapella received her doctorate from Columbia University after serving as a fulltime teacher in K-12 public schools for 10 years. Dr. Campbell Carapella is currently an Associate Professor at Ithaca College in the School of Health Science and Human Performance where she has been researching successful motivational strategies. She implements a step approach to combine external and internal motivational opportunities during different stages of a wellness program. She has spent the last 17 years experimenting with motivational techniques to produce effective outcomes in many different microcosms. She has also studied and published various articles in motivational techniques. Dr. Campell Carapella has conceptualized the idea of an interdisciplinary approach to preventative healthcare by incorporating principles of systems science and has since published this idea as a motivational tool (CCHANGE).


Dr. Wendy Scinta is a nationally recognized bariatric physician specializing in adult and childhood obesity treatment, and the current president of the Obesity Medicine Association. She is a Clinical Assistant Professor of Family Medicine at SUNY Upstate, Diplomat of the American Board of Family Physicians and the American Board of Obesity Medicine. Dr. Scinta’s BOUNCE childhood obesity program has been researched and implemented internationally. Her practice, Medical Weight Loss of New York, has treated thousands of overweight and obese individuals, from 4 to 84 years of age, helping several lose in excess of 200 pounds. Dr. Scinta has been featured as the weight loss expert for the Steve Harvey Show, appeared on CNN, Voice of America, John Tesh Intelligence for you Health, Say Yes To the Dress: Big Bliss Edition on TLC, PBS, as well as in print including AMA News, The Denver Post, MD News, Newsday, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Oprah Magazine, Parenting Magazine, Prevention Magazine, Shape Magazine, Web MD, Woman’s Day, and Woman’s Health Magazine among many others. Dr. Scinta also appeared in the 2014 documentary, “Carb Loaded- A culture dying to Eat.”