UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- This April, the Penn State Student Red Cross Club will challenge the Penn State community to donate blood for the third annual Fight for Life. Penn State and Ohio State will compete in a friendly battle to collect the most blood donations throughout the month of April. The winner will claim bragging rights as the best collegiate donation program in the Big 10, possibly in the nation.
This is the third year of the Fight for Life and it is on track to be the biggest yet. The Nittany Lions won by 70 units (pints) last year, after falling to the Buckeyes in the inaugural year. This is the last campaign of the semester.
There is an urgent appeal for several blood types: O negative, A negative and B negative.
Similar to the Penn State vs. Michigan State Blood Donor Challenge that takes place every fall, the American Red Cross hopes that the contest will motivate students to give blood more regularly. Approximately 5 percent of the U.S. population donates blood in a given year, although up to 40 percent may meet the eligibility criteria to donate. This eligibility percentage certainly could be higher on a college campus. If just 5 percent of the Penn State population donated blood, about 2,500 units of blood would be collected. This would greatly exceed the goal for this competition of 1,300 units.
The Red Cross is working with over 40 student sponsor groups for the 13 the Fight for Life drives. These student groups are responsible for publicizing the drive in and outside of their organization. They recruit donors throughout campus, as well as supplying volunteers for their drive. Their support and commitment make these drives successful.
The blood collected during the Penn State vs Ohio State Fight for Life will help supply blood needed at hospitals in both the Greater Alleghenies and Central Ohio Regions of the American Red Cross. A unit of blood has a shelf life of only 42 days so replenishment must be constant. Every two seconds someone needs blood in the U.S. More than 30,000 pints of blood are needed daily.
This spring, Subway will be providing sandwiches for donors at the canteen. McDonald’s supplies the orange drink to all local Penn State and Centre County drives throughout the year. This spring, all presenting donors will receive a buy one, get one McDonald’s sandwich coupon. On the last drive of Fight for Life, April 24, the PA Beef Council, Penn State Catering, and the Penn State Block and Bridle Club will be teaming up to “beef up the blood supply." Hamburgers will be provided at the canteen. Donors will receive a special Beef Up the Blood Suppy T-shirt as well.
Penn State’s continuous progress against Ohio State will be documented daily on scoreboards found in the HUB and the residence halls. Updates will also be posted on the Student Red Cross website, and its Facebook and Twitter accounts.
Blood donation appointments are strongly recommended and can be made at www.psuredcross.org. Once a drive is chosen, the donor will be redirected to the American Red Cross scheduling system. Donors new to the donation scheduling system may join by choosing “New User." The donor will be able to log into their own profile and can make, change and cancel donation appointments.
Fight for Life drives:
April 1, Waring Commons, West Halls, 1 to 7 p.m.
April 3, Warnock Commons, North Halls, 1 to 7 p.m.
April 4, HUB, Alumni Hall, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
April 8, Brill Hall, Eastview Terrace, 1 to 7 p.m.
April 9, 124 Findlay Commons, East Halls, 1 to 7 p.m.
April 10, 124 Findlay Commons, East Halls, 1 to 7 p.m.
April 11, HUB, Alumni Hall, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
April 15, HUB, Alumni Hall, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
April 16, HUB, Alumni Hall, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
April 17, Wagner Building, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
April 18, HUB, Alumni Hall, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
April 22, The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
April 24, HUB, Heritage Hall, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.