Vampire-Inspired Campaign Draws Blood - and Donors
Published: Thursday, October 18, 2012
Updated: Thursday, October 18, 2012 14:10
Although the bloody fangs on black and red posters across the Smith campus may bring Halloween to mind, these posters have a purpose beyond a night of fun. The posters, which urge Smith students to “Starve a Vampire” and “Donate Blood,” were created to draw volunteers to a Red Cross blood drive sponsored by the Smith Community Service Office.
The blood drive is scheduled to take place in the Campus Center Carroll Room on Tuesday, Oct. 16, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Wednesday, Oct. 17, from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. Volunteers wishing to register as organ and tissue donors will be able to do so in the Carroll Room as well. All participating students must bring a form of identification.
The procedure may seem intimidating to students who have never given blood before, and many may wonder why they should donate at all.
“It’s hard to donate money or time when you’re a student, but it’s easy to donate blood,” said Alex Asal ’16. “Since it’ll only take 30 minutes out of my day, then why not?”
Mollie Schwam ’13, who is coordinating the blood drive, added that blood donors will also receive a free six-inch sandwich from Subway.
Schwam is looking forward to this season’s blood drive. Although she herself is not able to give blood, she has high expectations that the drive will bring in a lot of donors.
“A nice goal would be probably in the high hundreds, and I think we’re going to achieve that,” she said. “I’m almost completely booked with appointments, so that’s exciting.”
For some students, this won’t be the first time donating blood – for Asal, this blood drive will be her fourth. She has donated twice before in high school and once before at her town’s senior center.
Nor are Micah Collins-Sibley ’14 and Cecelia Arrison ’16 strangers to donation: both students have each given blood six times. Like many people, however, both students were apprehensive about donating at first. Collins-Sibley attributes this to a discomfort with needles. “They make me nervous. I just don’t pay attention when they’re sticking the needle into my arm,” she said. Arrison has grown more comfortable with donating over time. At her first blood drive, she said, “I was a little nervous, but most people just freak themselves out about it, I think.”
Some concerns about donating might be legitimate, however. Asal is worried about her current eligibility to donate. “A lot of women our age are turned away because their iron levels are too low, and I’m not sure if my diet has changed since coming to Smith,” she explained. Asal is also concerned that her recent tattoo may affect her eligibility. “If you get a piercing in a registered place in Massachusetts, you can donate right away; but the information [about tattoos affecting eligibility] wasn’t online, so I couldn’t tell,” she said.
Students who have questions about their eligibility or who are interested in registering can find answers to their questions through the Red Cross Web site or by e-mailing Schwam at firstname.lastname@example.org. Students who cannot donate this week will have another opportunity to give blood at Smith in February.