Abington Faculty in the News: Myths about the Freshman 15

Meghan Gillen Abington

Meghan Gillen, associate professor of psychology, Penn State Abington

Credit: Pam Brobst

ABINGTON, Pa. — U.S. News & World Report recently interviewed Meghan Gillen, a Penn State Abington eating and body-image researcher, about the feared "Freshman 15," or weight gain in first-year college students.

The article, "6 Myths about the Freshman 15," reported that some college students lose weight and may even develop eating disorders when granted total control over their eating behaviors. Eating disorders often arise during life transitions, according to studies.

Gillen, associate professor of psychology at Abington, suggests that colleges work with students to adopt healthy eating and physical activity patterns as they transition to college life.

Penn State Abington, formerly the Ogontz campus, offers baccalaureate degrees in 19 majors at its suburban location just north of Philadelphia. Nearly half of our 4,000 students complete all four years at Abington, with opportunities in undergraduate research, the Schreyer honors program, NCAA Division III athletics, and more. Students can start the first two years of more than 160 Penn State majors at Abington and complete their degrees at University Park or another campus. Lions Gate, our first residence hall, opened in August 2017.