About the Department of Preventive Medicine


Improving population health, locally and globally, through research and education.

The Department of Preventive Medicine’s mission is broad and encompassing, reflecting the scope of population health sciences and preventive medicine, intersecting the research and educational interests of faculty in other departments and schools within the University, for a truly transdisciplinarity program.

Facts & Figures

Founded: 1977
Students: 1009 (472 Undergraduate majors and minors; 435 Masters and 102 Doctoral)
Faculty: 122, including 109 full-time faculty members, 13 part-time
Research: Over $40M in annual sponsored research funding
Sponsored Funding for two Institutes:

Investigators for the Eastern Africa GEOHealth Hub meeti at USC conduct research trainings.
Sponsored Funding for multiple Centers:

Research and Education Programs in Multiple Foreign Countries, including:

  • Belgium
  • Botswana
  • Ecuador
  • Ethiopia
  • Indonesia
  • Japan
  • Kenya
  • Malaysia
  • Mexico
  • Panama
  • Rwanda
  • Senegal
  • Seychelles
  • Switzerland
  • Uganda
  • Ukraine
  • Vietnam

Our Mission

about-missionOur educational mission is to train medical, graduate and undergraduate students regarding the most current knowledge of disease etiology and prevention and the most up-to-date technologies and methodologies for addressing disease etiology and prevention. Our combined goals are to:

Provide fundamental background to incorporate sound prevention practices and strategies into clinical activities; enable clinical researchers to critically interpret medical research studies and participate potentially as effective collaborators on interdisciplinary research; and to foster an understanding of both the major risk factors for death and disability in our society and the clinical interventions known to effectively prevent or reduce the impact of these health problems.

Train the next generation of undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate level epidemiologists, biostatisticians and prevention scientists with sound methodologic approaches, interdisciplinary technology, and creative biologically based thinking about disease etiology and prevention; and provide students in our public health degree programs a foundation in the role of biology, behavior, culture, social systems, and genetics working interactively to determine health and well-being and to better assess community and global needs and opportunities for improving the public health.

Our research mission is to carry out far reaching and cutting edge research that has the overall purpose of providing the evidence needed to advance population health. Our work addresses the etiology and prevention of disease, focusing on those conditions and those causative and preventive factors for which interventions may have a substantial public health impact. We also develop new biologic and analytic methodologies to advance research approaches and to deal with the challenges of emerging complex data streams. We carry out research to develop efficacious community-based programs to promote the health of the diverse populations of California and beyond. Our research in global health touches on issues of broad global impact, including health and human rights, environmental health, and prevention of non-communicable diseases.