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Women in Rio 2016 Olympic Games: Nzingha Prescod

Nzingha_Prescod_2012_LondonPrescod is a Brooklyn native and 2012 Olympian in her third year at Columbia University. Prescod hails from the well-regarded Peter Westbrook Foundation, an organization dedicated to bringing the art of fencing to the inner-city youth of New York, where she has been fencing since she was nine years old. A graduate of New York City’s highly acclaimed Stuyvesant High School, she has always dedicated her time to dually excelling in school and fencing. She currently is majoring in political science and doing a concentration in the Race and Ethnicity department, seeking to pursue a career in policy work.

Prescod displayed an extraordinary talent for the sport at a very young age, winning her first Youth 10 national competition in 2003. By the age of 15, Prescod was ranked in the top five of the Senior division, among the nation’s elite and Olympic women’s foilists. In the same year, 2008, Prescod won her first Cadet (under-17) World Championship and followed up the next year with her second World Championship title. In 2011, she continued her dominance on the world stage with another World Championship win in the Junior (under-20) category. That same year, Prescod was also featured in Essence magazine as part of the Work & Wealth Power List, with First Lady Michelle Obama gracing the cover.

After qualifying for six consecutive Cadet/Junior World Championship teams, and three consecutive Senior teams, she concluded her final year in Junior on the 2012 Olympic Team at the age of 19. Entering the Olympics as 16th seed, she fell in the round of 32 to five-time World Championship medalist, Aida Mohamed, finishing 22nd. In the team event she helped lead the American team to a 6th place finish.

In the last year, Prescod has continued to hone her skills and climb up the world rankings. In 2013, she won the Marseille Grand Prix – the first women’s foilist to ever do so. This 2013-2014 season, she made her second senior podium in Gdansk, Poland with a silver medal. She is currently ranked first in the US and fifth in the world.

Recent Competition History


  • Gold – Pan American Championships (Team)
  • Silver – Gdansk World Cup (Team)
  • Fourth – Algers World Cup (Team)
  • Fifth – Pan American Championships (Individual)
  • Fifth – Tauberbischofsheim World Cup (Team)
  • Seventh – Havana Grand Prix
  • Seventh – Gdansk World Cup (Individual)
  • 11th – Tauberbischofsheim World Cup (Individual)
  • 13th – Shanghai Grand Prix
  • 34th – Algers World Cup (Individual)


  • Gold – Pan American Championships (Team)
  • Silver – Gdansk Grand Prix
  • Bronze – Pan American Championships (Individual)
  • Fifth – Torino World Cup (Individual)
  • Fifth – January North American Cup (Division I)
  • Seventh – Senior World Championships (Team)
  • Seventh – July North American Cup (Division I)
  • Ninth – Torino World Cup (Team)
  • 10th – Seoul Grand Prix
  • 17th – Shanghai World Cup
  • 18th – Marseille Grand Prix
  • 18th – Tauberbischofsheim World Cup
  • 19th – Senior World Championships (Individual)


  • Gold – Marseille Grand Prix
  • Gold – USA Fencing National Championships (Division I)
  • Fourth – Tauberbischofsheim World Cup (Team)
  • Fifth – Tauberbischofsheim World Cup (Individual)
  • Ninth – Shanghai World Cup
  • 10th – Torino World Cup (Individual)
  • 12th – St. Petersburg World Cup
  • 19th – Seoul Grand Prix


  • Gold – Pan American Championships (Team)
  • Gold – December North American Cup (Division I)
  • Silver – Junior World Championships (Team)
  • Bronze – Pan American Championships (Individual)
  • Sixth – Olympic Games (Team)
  • Sixth – November North American Cup (Division I)
  • Sixth – November North American Cup (Division I)
  • 12th – Shanghai World Cup
  • 13th – Seoul Grand Prix
  • 22nd – Olympic Games (Individual)


  • Gold – Junior World Championships (Individual)
  • Gold – Pan American Championships (Team)
  • Gold – Pan American Games (Team)
  • Silver – Junior World Championships (Team)
  • Bronze – Pan American Championships (Individual)
  • Seventh – Senior World Championships (Team)
  • 19th – Senior World Championships (Individual)


  • Gold – Pan American Championships (Team)
  • Fourth – Junior World Championships (Team) 
  • Eighth – Senior World Championships (Team)
  • 11th – New York World Cup
  • 12th – Junior World Championships (Individual)
  • 13th – Pan American Championships (Individual)
  • 24th – Seoul Grand Prix
  • 32nd – Senior World Championships (Individual)
  • 52nd – Shanghai World Cup
  • 60th – Torino Grand Prix


  • Gold – Cadet World Championships 
  • Gold – Junior World Championships (Team)
  • Gold – Pan American Championships (Individual)
  • Gold – Pan American Championships (Team)
  • Seventh – Senior World Championships (Team)
  • Eighth – Junior World Championships (Individual)
  • 15th – Gdansk Grand Prix
  • 24th – Seoul Grand Prix
  • 25th – Senior World Championships (Individual)
  • 27th – Dallas World Cup
  • 42nd – Torino World Cup


  • Gold – Cadet World Championships 
  • Bronze – Las Vegas World Cup
  • Seventh – Junior World Championships (Team)
  • 23rd – Junior World Championships (Individual)
  • 39th – Leipzig World Cup
  • 49th – Salzbourg World Cup


  • Eighth – Junior World Championships (Team)
  • 11th – Cadet World Championships  
  • 36th – Junior World Championships (Individual)


About the Author

New York Trend is a weekly news publication that focuses on issues and lifestyles of the African & Caribbean American communities throughout the New York metropolitan area and Nassau and Suffolk Counties of Long Island. It is a respected and well recognized news publication that has been in existence since 1989. Owner, Publisher and Executive Director, Dr. Teresa Taylor Williams has been at the helm of this award-winning publication since its inception. New York Trend continues to be the only black woman-owned, metropolitan newspaper in New York and Long island. New York Trend is the largest black-owned newspaper throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties.

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