Students donate blood to support hurricane relief

Sara Macho

Tania McCloy, freshman individualized health sciences major and third-time donor (right), came to Stewart Hall to donate at the Red Cross blood drive along with Jess Hamilton, freshman psychology major.

Credit: Steve Schirra

Erica Harper remembers her first time.

The freshman nursing major almost didn’t go through with it because she was too nervous.

But she potentially saved three lives.

Donating 10 minutes of your day to give blood can save three lives, said Marty Wallenhorst, donor recruitment representative for the northern Ohio region of the American Red Cross.

The organization, along with the Undergraduate Student Senate and Delta Upsilon Fraternity, sponsored a blood drive yesterday in Stewart Hall.

The blood drive drew in a large crowd of students, mainly freshmen because of its location in upper plaza of First Year Experience.

The senators came in shifts to oversee the donation.

Business and Finance Senator Kevin Folk has never donated blood, but he said the blood drive is a good way for students to give back to victims.

“Sometimes people need more than clothing or money,” he said. “Every little bit helps.”

And students are helping.

“We’ve had a great turn-out here,” Wallenhorst said. “Before we opened at 2, there were 20 students waiting outside, ready to donate.”

Leanne Allison, a collections charge staff member of the American Red Cross, said there has been a big difference in the number of people donating.

“Everyday I’m going to a different location for a blood drive,” she said. “It’s great to see people who are willing to donate.”

For many of the volunteers, it was their third or fourth time.

“It’s really important,” said Jennifer Ineman, freshman nursing major and third time donor. “The small amount of pain you feel is nothing compared to the pain Hurricane Katrina victims are going through.”

But helping Hurricane Katrina victims does not stop at Kent State.

The parents of freshman nursing major Kerri Wilson are opening their home to a hurricane victim, who is due to arrive next week.

Wilson’s mother, an employee of The Children’s House, a hospital in Columbus, signed up to sponsor a victim and received a call the same day.

“I’m just glad to do whatever I can,” Wilson said, regarding blood donation. “I don’t have the money to give to the people, but I can give blood.”

Students still looking to donate blood should look for advertisements in their residence halls and listen for updates from resident assistants. The American Red Cross plans to visit the Kent State campus five more times this month.

Contact student politics reporter Sara Macho at [email protected].



ƒ-SBlood donated from Kent State students to the American Red Cross is used to help both Ohio hospitals and hurricane victims.

ƒ-SEach test tube is sent to a national testing laboratory in Detroit, where it is tested for 17 different diseases and viruses, such as HIV and hepatitis, said Marty Wallenhorst, donor recruitment representative for the northern Ohio region of the American Red Cross.

ƒ-S Next, tubes that have passed the health tests are distributed to 57 hospitals all over Northeast Ohio.

ƒ-S The American Red Cross then discovers what hospitals have a surplus. The surplus is sent to hurricane victims.