A native of Indiana, Ralston received the B.S. degree from Ball State University and the M.Ed. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Illinois. Her previous positions include professor, College of Human Sciences, Iowa State University and professor and head,Department of Consumer Studies,University of Massachusetts-Amherst. The author of over 60 refereed articles, abstracts, book chapters and reviews, Ralston's major scholarly work has focused on program development, including the development of community-based programs and higher education programs.
Ph.D., University of Illinois, 1978
M.Ed., University of Illinois, 1975
B.S., Ball State University, 1971
Reducing Cardiovascular Risk in Mid-life and Older African Americans. National Center on Minority Health & Health Disparities. Penny Ralston, Principal Investigator; Jasminka Ilich-Ernst and KAS Wickrama, Co-Principal Investigators), $1.75 Million, 2008-2013.
Adding Health Content to Adult Literacy Programs. Florida Department of Health. Gail Bellamy & Andree Aubrey, Principal Investigators. Penny Ralston, Subcontract, $13,400. 2009-2010.
Florida Alliance Scholars. Florida Department of Health. Penny Ralston, Principal Investigator. $5,000. 2009-2010.
- Community-based programs for older adults, health related outcomes, program development in higher education.
Davis, K., Johnson, L., Ralston, P., Fields, M.E., Young-Clark, I., Colyard, V., Fluellen, V. and Rasco, M.R. (in press). Perceptions, experiences and use of resources of selected HBCU students’transition to graduate and professional roles in family and consumer sciences. Family and Consumer Sciences Research Journal.
Johnson, L., Ralston, P. and Jones, E.(2010). Beauty Salon Health Intervention Results in Increased Fruit and Vegetable Consumption in African American Women. Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 110(6), 941-945.
Rankins, J., Nathan, T. and Ralston, P. (2009). Integrating nutrition education and meal service into a faith-based prostate screening program: A strategy for reaching African American men. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, 41(1), 71-72.
Nickols, S., Ralston, P., Anderson, C., Browne, L., Schroeder, G., Thomas, S. and Wild, P. (2009). The Family and Consumer Sciences body of knowledge and the cultural kaleidoscope: Research opportunities and challenges. Family and Consumer Sciences Research Journal, 37 (3), 266-283.
Ralston, P., Greenwood, B., Floyd, K., Young-Clark, I., Cornille, T., Jenkins, T., Henderson, M., Mullins, A., Brown, L., and Gaskin, D. (2009). Nutrition Education Initiative: A school-based program to improve eating practices of preadolescents. Journal of Family and Consumer Sciences, 101(2),47-52.
Ralston, P., Furlow, J., Brickler-Hart, C., Baker, L., Austin, D., Ford, C., and Dilworth, L. (2007). The Community Wellness Program: An intergenerational seminar for African Americans. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved,18(1),21-27.
Ralston, P., Cloud, R., and Bell, J. (2005). Step Ahead: Diversifying graduate programs through recruitment and retention. Journal of Family and Consumer Sciences, 97(1), 39-44.
Ralston, P., Floyd, K., Fluellen, V., Colyard, V., Fields, M.E., Rasco, M. and Bell, J. (2004). The SciencPrep Project: Strengthening scientific preparation of diverse undergraduates. Journal of Family and Consumer Sciences, 96(3), 16-25.
Ralston, P. (2003). Diversifying the health professions: A model program. American Journal of Health Behavior, 27(3), 235-245.
Dancy, J. and Ralston, P. (2003). Health promotion and Black elders: Subgroups of greatest need. Research on Aging, 24(2), 218-242.
Ralston, P., Lerner, R., Mullis, A., Simerly, C., and Murray, J. (2000). Social change, public policy and community collaborations: Training human professionals for the twenty-first century. Norwell, MA: Kluwer Academic Publishers.
Ralston, P. and Cohen, N. (1999). Nutrition education and the black elderly: A strategic approach. Journal of Nutrition Education, 31(4), 230-234.
Cohen, N., Ralston, P., Laus, M.J., Burmudez, O., and Brennan-Olson, R. (1998). Food practices, service use and dietary quality in elderly Blacks. Journal of Nutrition for the Elderly, 17(4) 17-34.
- American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences
- American Public Health Association
- Distinguished Service Award, American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences
- Past President, American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences
- National Role Model Award, Minority Access, Inc.
- Distinguished Alumnus Award, Ball State University
- Fellow, Association of Gerontology in Higher Education
- Fellow, Gerontological Society of America
- Editorial Board/Reviewer, The Gerontologist
- Editorial Board, Journal of Nutrition for the Elderly
- Reviewer, Journal of Applied Gerontology
- Reviewer, Public Health Nutrition
FAD4936/FAD5934 Community-based Health Research with Underserved Populations
HUN 4905 MEMS Seminar