USC PRC Celebrates 20 Years of Excellence

In 1993, the Prevention Research Center was established with CDC funding. Two decades later, the center's impact on public health practice, policy is seen across state, nation.


PRC Director, Dr. Sara Wilcox

When Dr. Patricia Sharpe recently received a prestigious R01 grant from the National Institutes of Health to fund a study on food deserts in two S.C. communities, the award became one more achievement in the 20-year history of the Prevention Research Center at the Arnold School of Public Health.

Established in 1993 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the PRC is one of a national network of 37 academic research centers, each at either a school of public health or a medical school that has a preventive medicine residency program. Every center has a particular focus area. At the Arnold School's PRC, the focus is on improving health and preventing disease through physical activity.

Its founding as one of the CDC's first PRC programs has ushered in an era of success in translating research results into real-world programs and public health practice and policy, said Dr. Sara Wilcox, the fourth director to lead the Arnold School's PRC. Her predecessors are Dr. Carol Macera, Dr. Barbara Ainsworth, and Dr. Steven Hooker.

For more information, see the full study from the Arnold School of Public Health here.






PRC celebrates anniversary at Oct. 24 reception

The Prevention Research Center at the Arnold School of Public Health was established in 1993 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as one of the first PRCs in the nation; on Oct 24, the Arnold School celebrated the center's 20th anniversary at a drop-in reception.

Dr. Sara Wilcox (the PRC director), Dr. Tom Chandler (Dean of the Arnold School), Linda Pekuri (Executive Director of Sumter County Active Lifestyles), and Gary Mixon (County Administrator of Sumter County) provided remarks at the event. Mr. Mixon also presented Dr. Wilcox and the PRC with a newly signed proclamation from the Chairman of Sumter County's District 6, Larry Blanding, which declared October 25 to be University of South Carolina Prevention Research Center Day in Sumter County.

Posters representing the research and outreach programs of the PRC were also on display during the reception.

Guests enjoying the poster displays


Dean Chandler Delivers his opening remarks


Dr. Sara Wilcox, PRC Director


Linda Pekuri, Executive Director of Sumter County Active Lifestyles


Gary Mixon, County Administrator of Sumter County


Dr. Larry Durstine, Dean Thomas Chandler, Dr. Sara Wilcox, Dr. Russ Pate


Community members from Sumter County Active Lifestyles