“A pint of blood can save three lives,” states American Red Cross organizational literature.
This motto has led many concerned citizens to donate blood to help needy patients. Cornell students were no exception as they crowded into Anabel Taylor Hall, yesterday for the first blood drive sponsored by Kappa Delta and Sigma Alpha Mu.
The blood drive comes at a crucial point in light of an increasing blood shortage in the New York/New Jersey area.
“In New Jersey they have had to turn people down who need blood transfusions because there is not enough blood,” said Heather Petersen ’02, public relations representative at Kappa Delta who also headed the planning committee of this drive.
“Events like this blood drive are really important,” Petersen added. “Right now, five percent of the American population gives blood, but 75 percent of the population will need blood in their lifetime.”
She discussed how Cornell students have participated in these drives.
“About 10 percent of Cornell students donate blood, but we can help step this number up with more blood drives,” Petersen said.
If yesterday’s blood drive is any indication, an increase in drives could surely make a dent in the area blood shortage.
“From the names on the sign-up sheet, we were expecting about 60 people to donate,” said Mike Brantly ’02, of Sigma Alpha Mu.
“The tallies at the end of the day indicated about 80 donors, meaning about 80 pints of blood,” Petersen said.
The success of the blood drive exceeded the expectations of its sponsors.
“The drive was first organized by Kappa Delta,” said Rachel Dragos ’02, Kappa Delta sorority member, “It then became a joint effort between Kappa Delta and Sigma Alpha Mu.”
Petersen also commented on how she enlisted help from the Red Cross themselves.
“At the last blood drive I went to, a nurse gave me the name of Scott Raynor, the American Red Cross representative who organizes most of the blood drives in this area,” she said, “[He] worked with us to make the drive happen.”
As far as Kappa Delta and Sigma Alpha Mu’s goals, Petersen said, “We are hoping to hold more blood drives at Cornell in the future. I think that the greek system could have a huge influence.”
Archived article by Leigh McMullan