What's Happening

Check out what our people and partners are researching, thinking, reading, writing, watching and doing!

(Note: Opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of ETR as an agency.)

HPV Vaccine: What About the Boys?
June 22, 2015
HPV Vaccine: What About the Boys?

By William Spatafora | June 22, 2015
MPH Student, Tulane University | 2015 Kirby Summer Intern, ETR

“Why? He’s a boy.”

These were the first  words out of my cousin’s mouth last month when I asked if her 12-year-old son had been vaccinated against HPV. “Isn’t the HPV vaccine given just to girls, to protect against cervical cancer?”

This is a common belief among parents—that HPV only poses a cancer risk for girls. The CDC, however, recommends girls and boys be vaccinated against HPV at age 11 or 12 (and, for those who miss that window, up to age 21 for males and 26 for females, or 26 for men who have sex with men).

Why would there be such a gap in beliefs about HPV vaccination for girls compared to boys?

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Tags: HPV, HPV vaccine, Vaccine, Public health, Gender, Kirby internship
STI? STD? What's the Difference?
June 17, 2015
STI? STD? What's the Difference?

By Marcia Quackenbush, MS, MFT, MCHES | June 18, 2015
Senior Editor, ETR

If your work involves talking to people about sexual health, you must be talking to them about STDs. Or STIs. Or both. Right?

As the great STD-STI terminology challenge continues, just about everyone has had to choose one term or the other. Well, everyone except for the people who use both interchangeably to mean the same thing. Or those folks who use each in distinct ways to mean different things.

I asked a few of my ETR colleagues to share their current thinking and preferred term for their work. Here’s what they had to say. 

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Tags: STDs, Terminology
Making a Difference: Science, Research & Public Health
June 16, 2015
Making a Difference: Science, Research & Public Health

By Monica Sun | June 16, 2015
MPH Student, Tulane University | 2015 Kirby Summer Intern, ETR

This summer, I have the fortunate opportunity to work at ETR with a group of intelligent, intriguing and passionate people. Just within this first week or so, I’ve met many inspiring minds who’ve come together in this organization with a common goal: making a difference in the fields of science, research and public health.

The atmosphere here inspires me! I’m even more determined to go after my goals of reaching out to the underserved and making significant contributions to these fields. 

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Tags: Kirby internship, Research, Public health, HIV / AIDS, HIV treatment
Welcome! ETR’s 2015 Kirby Summer Interns Are on the Job
June 11, 2015
Welcome! ETR’s 2015 Kirby Summer Interns Are on the Job

By ETR | June 11, 2015

ETR extends an enthusiastic welcome to this year’s Kirby Summer Interns. Monica Sun and William Spatafora both hail from the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine at Tulane University. They will be spending the summer working directly with ETR researchers, gathering and analyzing data. Each will co-author a paper for submission to a professional journal. 

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Tags: Kirby internship
Creating a High-Vitality Organization That Embraces High-Velocity Change
June 8, 2015
Creating a High-Vitality Organization That Embraces High-Velocity Change

By Dan McCormick, MHA | June 8, 2015
Chief Executive Officer, ETR

Have you noticed that the pace of change is accelerating? Of course! We all have. And we're hearing about it over and over, with greater and greater frequency. “Be agile.” “Pivot quickly.” “Re-invent yourself.”

But how do we put these slogans to work to improve our organizations?

I believe one of the best ways to successfully navigate today’s world of high-velocity change is to create and sustain high-vitality organizations.

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Tags: Organizational development, Vitality, Innovation
Déjà Vu: Big Tobacco Recruits!
June 2, 2015
Déjà Vu: Big Tobacco Recruits!

By Narinder Dhaliwal, MA | June 2, 2015
Project Director, California's Clean Air Project, ETR

“Nicotine is not addictive,” tobacco executives said in 1994, testifying before Congress in what are now known as the Waxman Hearings. They said this repeatedly, even in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary from authorities all the way up to the U.S. Surgeon General.

Over 20 years later, we have 20 more years worth of scientific evidence demonstrating that nicotine is addictive and harmful. We know these products are killing people in all kinds of ways, from direct smoking, to secondhand smoke exposure and even thirdhand smoke (the residual nicotine and other chemicals that remain on people and indoor surfaces—hair, skin, clothes, counters, furniture, drapes, bedding and more).

So what are tobacco companies telling us now that e-cigarettes are on the scene?

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Tags: Tobacco, E-cigarettes, Second-hand smoke
Seasoned Trainer Seeking Transformative Experience
June 1, 2015
Seasoned Trainer Seeking Transformative Experience

By Annika Shore, MPH | June 1, 2015
Professional Development Consultant, ETR

Are you a trainer, professional development provider or sexuality educator? Do you deliver trainings for educators on evidence-based adolescent sexual and reproductive health programs (EBPs)? Then we’re looking for you!

ETR is offering it’s research-based Training of Trainers—Evidence-Based Programs this coming September 15–18. This training provides an opportunity for you to become skilled in delivering Trainings of Educators for one of these three programs: Draw the Line/Respect the Line (DTL/RTL), Reducing the Risk (RTR) or Becoming a Responsible Teen (BART).

The training will help you bring a new level of energy, understanding and skill to your work. 

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Tags: Professional development, Evidence-based interventions, Training of trainers
"Shocking" News: Pregnancy More Likely in LGB Teens!
May 28, 2015
"Shocking" News: Pregnancy More Likely in LGB Teens!

By Annika Shore, MPH | May 28, 2015
Professional Development Consultant, ETR

A study has recently come out that has everyone in my field talking. I’ve seen posts about it in newsletters and blogs about it on social media. Announcements were made in all my professional networks. This new study shows that lesbian, gay and bisexual teens are more likely to experience a pregnancy than their heterosexual counterparts.

I was happy to see that this new research was getting people in my community talking about an issue I care deeply about. However, this is not new information. This research confirms something we have known for many years and is not, in fact, “shocking.”

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Tags: Sexual and reproductive health, Professional development, Pregnancy prevention, LGBTQ
What Men's Health Crisis?
May 26, 2015
What Men's Health Crisis?

By Anne Freiwald, MPH | May 26, 2015
Founder, MenNavigate

“I feel like I’m having a heart attack.” That’s what he told people throughout the day that would be his last.

At 57, my dad was just 3 years away from retirement. He was an avid surfer, kayaker and cyclist. He was a beloved teacher and vice-principal at the school right around the corner from his home. He was ready for the sweet life he had worked so hard to create.

He never dreamed his life would be cut short, especially by a heart attack he knew he was having. He didn’t realize that his decision to “sleep it off” and find a doctor in the morning would have such tragic consequences for him, his family, friends and community.

His story is not uncommon. 

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Tags: Men, Men's health
Hello Denver! Get Real Regional Training Coming Up
May 22, 2015
Hello Denver! Get Real Regional Training Coming Up

By ETR | May 22, 2015

Our partners at Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts (PPLM) will be holding a regional Training of the Educator for the Get Real Middle School curriculum in Denver, Colorado. The two-day training is scheduled for July 31-August 1.

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Tags: Professional development, Get Real
Facilitation Quick Tips: Talkin' Toe-2-Toe
May 18, 2015
Facilitation Quick Tips: Talkin' Toe-2-Toe

By Joan Singson | May 18, 2015
Program Manager, ETR

Picture yourself standing in front of a room going through the talking points of your training design. You pan the room and notice a few heads bobbing. The bodies they’re attached to twitch as they fight training fatigue. You see glazed-over stares of participants whose minds are somewhere between the training room and a warm bed.

It’s time for an energizer!

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Tags: Training design, Facilitation
A Fine Five-Miler: The Santa Cruz Human Race
May 14, 2015
A Fine Five-Miler: The Santa Cruz Human Race

By Julie Adams | May 14, 2015
Research Assistant, ETR

A five-mile run has never felt so good! ETR members had the pleasure of participating in the 35th annual Human Race Walkathon and Fun Run this past weekend in Santa Cruz, CA. Together we helped raise funds for the Digital NEST, a non-profit in Watsonville, CA, that seeks to create a safe space for under-represented youth while encouraging them to explore and pursue an entrepreneurial spirit. We are huge supporters of the NEST and everything they do to ensure rural youth in Silicon Valley have access to the technologies needed to thrive in this increasingly digital world.

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Tags: ETR, Technology education, Diversity in technology, Digital Nest
How Great Partners Are Moving Student Health Forward
May 11, 2015
How Great Partners Are Moving Student Health Forward

By John Shields, PhD, MSW | May 11, 2015
Senior Research Associate, ETR

I’ve been thinking quite a lot about my professional partnerships lately. Over the past 14 years, ETR has provided me with opportunities to partner with many community-based organizations and institutions. Now, I can’t honestly say they’ve all been easy. “Stuff” happens. But I can say each one has given me a chance to create fascinating relationships and do meaningful work that has a genuine impact.

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Tags: School health, Research, K-12, Partnerships
Parenthood Unplugged
May 7, 2015
Parenthood Unplugged

By Laura Perkins, MLS | May 7, 2015
Project Editor, ETR

Here we are in the middle of Screen-Free Week, May 4–10, 2015! One week a year, families are encouraged to “power-down” their screens—TVs, computers, tablets, phones, games and other electronic media—and engage with each other and their own imaginations.

This is the first year my family and I decided consciously to participate. We already limit movies to the weekend, and our 8-year-old daughter doesn’t have her own computer or tablet or phone....

Then our daughter got a bad sore throat, cough, low-grade fever, and stayed home from school for two days.

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Tags: Children
OMG Who's Texting Me Now? New Research on Electronic Dating Violence
May 4, 2015
OMG Who's Texting Me Now? New Research on Electronic Dating Violence

By Pamela Anderson, PhD | May 4, 2015
Senior Research Associate, ETR

I think most of us can remember the first time we had a crush on someone. I do. It was Axl Rose, lead singer for the band Guns N’ Roses. Much to my family’s chagrin, I had his pictures splashed across my bedroom walls. I played his music virtually nonstop for months, while imagining what it would be like to be his girlfriend.

But my first noncelebrity crush and subsequent “real” boyfriend was in 7th grade—a boy named Bob. We spent a lot of time passing notes to each other in class or in the hallways at school, but not a lot of time talking to each other in person.

Today, things are so different. Technology has changed the way teens communicate with one another and the rest of the world.

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Tags: Electronic dating violence, Health education, Sexual and reproductive health, Technology
Blast to the Future
May 1, 2015
Blast to the Future

By Jason Jackson Wallace | May 1, 2015
Candidate for MBA, University of Michigan Ross School of Business

As a little kid, I spent a lot of my time reading and dreaming about space exploration. Often I would read about NASA’s future plans and envision myself as a future astronaut exploring Mars. It seemed like a sure thing to me.

I expected that by the time I’d be old enough to fly, we’d already have a colony on Mars. The idea of exploring and living on another planet would be read about in textbooks rather than science fiction novels.

Disappointingly, my imagination outstripped reality. However, that dream motivated me to continue pursuing science and mathematics throughout my education.

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Tags: Ross MAP, STEM, Technology education
Sharing Luck and Dreams
May 1, 2015
Sharing Luck and Dreams

By Shukun Ma | May 1, 2015
Candidate for MBA, University of Michigan Ross School of Business

I believe opportunity and possibility make life exciting, and that education transforms life.

For me, earning my MBA and doing an internship with ETR has helped provide a pathway to my DREAM.

I was literally shaking with thrills when I received the offer to attend the MBA program at Ross School of Business. I saw this as a huge step closer to realizing my career aspiration—using business acumen to empower people. At the same time, it made me look back at my own trajectory. I could not have advanced as I had without resources of various types which had been offered to me and which, I realized, I had been taking for granted.

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Tags: Ross MAP, STEM, Technology education
Amazing! The 2015 National Transgender Health Summit
April 29, 2015
Amazing! The 2015 National Transgender Health Summit

By Cary Klemmer | April 29, 2015
MSW/PhD Student, University of Southern California

Being able to attend a national health summit for transgender folks is one amazing thing in and of itself. Being able to present and share the narratives of transgender youth at that conference is another!

Last April 17-18, I had the great honor of both attending and presenting at the National Transgender Health Summit 2015 in Oakland, California. This event was made possible due to the diligence and hard work of the conference staff, including the UCSF Center of Excellence for Transgender Health and ETR, which co-sponsored the event.

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Tags: Transgender, Inspiration, Social justice, Community Impact Solutions Project, LGBTQ
Enabling Amazing Work to Grow
April 28, 2015
Enabling Amazing Work to Grow

By Max Dixon | April 28, 2015
Candidate for MBA and MA in Education Leadership & Policy, University of Michigan Ross School of Business

Working with ETR these past few weeks has been one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of my first year at the University of Michigan. My classmates and I had the opportunity to fly out to California and visit both the Scotts Valley and Oakland ETR offices, and we immersed ourselves in ETR’s extensive offerings.

ETR’s mission of reducing risk and improving the lives of young people manifests itself in many ways, and each employee has a strong passion for the work. 

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Tags: Ross MAP, Technology education, STEM
Talent and Opportunity, Abilities and Access: Minding the Gap
April 27, 2015
Talent and Opportunity, Abilities and Access: Minding the Gap

By Fulton Breen | April 27, 2015
Candidate for MBA and MA in Educational Leadership & Policy, University of Michigan Ross School of Business

The president of my university, Mark Schlissel, summarized his commitment to social justice and equitable youth development with a simple but powerful observation: Talent is ubiquitous, but opportunity is not.

So what are we to do with this gap between abilities and access?

This question drew me to the interesting work being done at ETR. It’s also what brought me to graduate school to study the intersections of business and education.

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Tags: Ross MAP, STEM
Taking Off to #ythlive 2015
April 23, 2015
Taking Off to #ythlive 2015

By Pamela Anderson, PhD | April 23, 2015
Senior Research Associate, ETR

Hi everyone! My colleagues and I are excited about the upcoming conference YTH Live: Igniting Youth Tech Health Innovation. It’s taking place this Sunday through Tuesday (April 26–28) at the Hotel Kabuki in San Francisco, and we’ve got some thought-provoking presentations on the schedule.

Ever wondered who youth are texting and what they are saying?

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Tags: YTH, Blended learning, Flipped classroom, Violence prevention, Electronic dating violence, Technology
5 Guiding Questions: Take Your In-Person Training Activities Virtual
April 20, 2015
5 Guiding Questions: Take Your In-Person Training Activities Virtual

By Tracy Wright, MAED, & Annika Shore, MPH | April 20, 2015
Project Director, ETR, & Professional Development Consultant, ETR

One of the essential hallmarks of a successful training is participant engagement through planned activities. Trainers know how to do this well in in-person trainings. But, for many of us, designing and delivering activities in the virtual environment can feel less certain—even intimidating.

Here are 5 guiding questions that will help you design successful virtual training activities.

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Tags: Professional development, Training design, Virtual trainings
Facilitation Quick Tips: Drop Us a Line!
April 16, 2015
Facilitation Quick Tips: Drop Us a Line!

By Annika Shore, MPH | April 16, 2015
Professional Development Consultant, ETR

This upbeat activity has some of the best elements for any training—movement, music and conversation. It engages brains, energizes participants and helps them personalize the learning.

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Tags: Training design, Professional development, Facilitation
Bringing the Sharing Economy to Sex Ed Teacher Training
April 13, 2015
Bringing the Sharing Economy to Sex Ed Teacher Training

By Rebekah Saul Butler, MBA, MPH | April 13, 2015
Co-Executive Director/The Grove Foundation

My business school marketing professor once said, “The airlines need to think more like a taxi.” Get people where they need to go when they want to go, and make it easy to get there.

As a frequent business traveler, I’ve often thought of those words while stranded in an airport or waiting for everyone in front of me to get their bags down and exit the aircraft. Air travel feels impersonal—like it’s designed to be convenient for the airlines, not the flier. And the industry hasn’t made much progress in 15 years.

I can’t say I’m any more enamored with the taxi industry. I’ve recently started using a ridesharing app and can understand perfectly why the sector is growing exponentially. And what’s this got to do with sexuality education?

I’d like to see sexuality education teacher training become more like a modern ridesharing business: technology based, customer centric and widely accessible.

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Tags: Training design, Sexual and reproductive health, STD prevention, Professional development
School Report: Flexing the Plan
April 9, 2015
School Report: Flexing the Plan

By John Henry Ledwith | April 9, 2015
National Sales Manager, ETR

I never cease to be amazed at the skill and art of fine teaching. Here’s a story I heard last week from a high school teacher I know.

Students were coming into her classroom at the beginning of the period. Two young men started talking about a fight that occurred the night before between a couple of their peers. They took different sides on the fight.

Their talk was assertive, then challenging, then trash. Racial epithets were tossed back and forth. Other students started joining in and the entire situation was escalating.

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Tags: K-12, Health education, School health, Teachers