On-Site Coordinator of the Month: Michala Alexander

Once a month, we celebrate those members of our club who take part in our On-Site Coordinator Program by getting to know them and what motivates them. This month, who better to meet than Michala Alexander, the On-Site Coordinator Captain? Michala coordinates the efforts of all student OSCs and ensures that OSCs are present at every blood drive and that they are trained and prepared to the best of their ability. Thank you Michala for helping all of our donors and volunteers!



What are the responsibilities of an On-Site Coordinator?

An On-Site Coordinator (OSC) is in charge of making sure the blood drive runs smoothly, helps the drive to reach it’s goal, supports the donors and talks to them, and assigns roles to the volunteers and makes sure they do their jobs.  An OSC is a leader that is willing to take charge to help the Red Cross improve the lives of others.


Why did you join the Student Red Cross Club here at Penn State?

I joined SRCC because I was very involved with the Red Cross Club in high school.  I was running the blood drives there and I loved working with the Red Cross and helping to supply the hospitals with enough blood.


Do you donate blood? If so, Why?

I have never been able to donate before, but I am looking to make a successful donation this year.  Giving blood is so important and only a small portion of the population is able to donate blood.


What is some advice you would give to someone who is afraid/has never given blood before?

There are a lot of people who are afraid to give blood for various reasons, they may be scared of needles, afraid of getting sick or passing out, or have had bad experiences with people they know having a hard time donating or personal bad experiences.  When I’m recruiting I remind people that one donation can save three lives, that very few people are eligible to donate, and that the donation process only lasts 10 minutes.


Why do you think that the Student Red Cross Club is important to have here?

The Student Red Cross Club is so important because it gives us a chance to give back to the community.  I really enjoy volunteer work and this is a type of volunteering that doesn’t take much time, but gives so much back to the community.  We get to say that we have helped to save lives, and that’s the type of volunteering that has a lasting impact that you can see.  You never know if the person you passed on the street has had a blood transfusion from one of our drives, or if the couple who made it out of their burning house got out because of a smoke detector that we helped to install, or if the little boy who was choking was saved because of a Red Cross training session.  The Red Cross makes a huge impact on communities around the world and it’s great to be a part of that.