OSU Institute of Technology celebrated National Blood Donor Month this year by hosting a blood drive on campus during Welcome Week. The first partnered blood drive of 2019 was Jan.9, through the Oklahoma Blood Institute. The blood drive collected 50 donations, which is equivalent to potentially saving 150 lives.
“Every two seconds, someone needs blood, yet less than 10 percent of those eligible to give blood do it,” said Lucy Laird with the Oklahoma Blood Institute. “It takes nearly 1,200 donors a day to meet the blood needs of patients in our regional hospitals.”
Laird encourages students who have never given blood before to just ‘Take the time!’ One blood donation can save up to three peoples’ lives.
“Giving blood takes less than one hour. Your one-hour gift could be a lifetime for the blood recipient who receives your donation,” said Laird.
OBI blood donors have the special opportunity to hear from their patient directly. Thank-The-Donor program is for Oklahoma Blood Institute Blood Donors and Blood Recipients.
A local mother had lost blood during a standard c-section and had to receive a large amount of blood. Due to the Thank-The-Donor program, the mother was able to send a message to the donors, once of which was collected at OSUIT.
“Without the donation of your blood, I would not have been able to see my newborn baby grow up with his big brother. I went through 26 units of blood and you were one of my angels and I am forever grateful for the renewed lease on life you have given me.”
In addition to saving lives, there are many benefits for OSUIT students, faculty and staff who give blood with OBI. They receive a free wellness check, a promotional item such as a T-shirt or other items and it’s a great way to give back to the local community at no cost. At OSUIT, some faculty members give extra credit/bonus points for giving blood or helping to volunteer at the OBI blood drive.
Oscar Rodriguez, OSUIT student, tries to donate to the blood drives each time they come.
“For one, I love their ‘only available if you donate blood’ shirts. The feeling of giving someone in need something from me that I have plenty of is an honor.”
Kamie Rash, director of Student Life coordinates the drives each year. “Blood Drives hosted on OSUIT campus are an opportunity for members of the OSUIT community to give blood,” she said. “When we host the blood drives here on campus we like to think of it as bringing the opportunity to the people. Students and employees many times are unable to give blood at other blood drives due to the daily presence needed on campus.”
In 2018, students, faculty and staff helped 708 patients in Oklahoma through OBI drives. The university had 308 blood donations take place through the drives hosted with OBI and American Red Cross.
“Of course, this year for 2019, we will strive to donate more through our partnered drives,” she said. “Everyone’s donation impacts the lives of three individuals so that’s a great way to give back to others, and a great way to express civic engagement.”
The year is already off to a great start with an 11 percent increase in donations versus January 2018.
“The goal for 2019 OBI blood drives at OSUIT is to collect 200 or more blood donations between three drives, on average 60 donations are collected at each drive hosted by OBI,” said Laird.
Blood drives on OSUIT campus have been offered for almost 30 years, twice per term. The next OBI drive will be May 22 in Covelle Hall.
For more information, contact Student Life at 918-293-4942 or firstname.lastname@example.org.