Headshot of Meg Small

Meg Small

PRC Director of Social Innovation; Assistant Research Professor

316A BBH Building

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Biography & Projects

Meg Small is the Director of Social Innovation at the Prevention Research Center and serves as the Director of the Health and Human Development Design for Impact Lab. As a Penn State alumna, Meg received her BS in health and human development (HHD) and went on to receive her Ph.D. in public and community health from the University of Maryland. Meg has worked in prevention research for 20 years, and initially became interested in the field as a graduate student who wished to help with the eradication of HIV.     

At the Center, Meg is particularly passionate about creating interdisciplinary collaboration and entrepreneurial mindsets to improve the translation process and impact of prevention science. She is interested in developing practices that use innovative methods and frameworks for evidence based programs. Meg’s most recent key project is the design challenge that was sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and she is currently working on designing and testing a product line for prevention. In the future, training, research and outreach in social innovation are Meg’s key research goals. She would also like to explore empirically the impact of innovative methods in prevention science outcomes.

Meg’s favorite part about working at the Center is the collaborative culture and interdisciplinary opportunities that present themselves. She loves the passion and commitment everyone at the Center has towards improving outcomes for children and parents. When Meg is not conducting research or winning HHD Faculty Appreciation Awards, she likes to spend time outside with her family, including her golden retriever or…obsessing over particle physics. 

Current Projects

Recent Publications

Time use during first year of college predicts participation in high-impact activities during later years

Small, M. L., Waterman, E., & Lender, T. (2017). Time use during first year of college predicts participation in high-impact activities during later years. Journal of College Student Development, 58(6), 954–960. PMCID: PMC5709808