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Penn State-Michigan State Challenge


November marks the beginning of the Penn State-Michigan State Blood Drive challenge! The challenge runs from the 31st of October to the 17th of November on both the Penn State and Michigan State campuses.
The challenge is a competition between the Penn State and Michigan State communities to see who can collect more blood over the time period through their blood drives. The best part about this competition is that it is all done in the spirit of helping others who may need it throughout the country.
The respective Student Red Cross Clubs have run this challenge since 1994, with the most recent victory in collection numbers going to Penn State in a come-from-behind victory. Anyone in the Penn State and State College community is welcome to come in, give blood and help contribute to a good cause as well as helping Penn State beat Michigan State! Donors will also receive a free Challenge themed t-shirt with their donation that is helping to save up to three lives.
Appointments to give blood can be made by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).


SRCC October Recap

October has been a great month to be a member of SRCC! The club held it’s first community event and we are going on an exciting canning trip this weekend.

This month was the first SRCC Pancake dinner, where members of the club cooked pancakes and other breakfast items for members of the Penn State and State College Areas to fundraise for the club. The dinner was the first of several community events that the club will be holding in and around the Penn State area.

On the weekend of the 28th, the club will be making our second canning trip of the year, this time to New York for a fun and exciting time collecting funds for THON! This is exciting for the club because it will be our first time canning outside of the state of Pennsylvania, so we wish the members of our club, who will be going on the trip, a fun and successful weekend!

Next month is the SRCC’s Penn State vs. Michigan State Challenge, so keep your eyes peeled for opportunities to donate and volunteer with us to help us win back-to-back against the Michigan State’s Red Cross Club!

On-Site Coordinator of the Month: David Lee

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, we meet David Lee, the SRCC’s Club Sports Chair and an exemplary OSC. David contacts club sports teams and coordinates with them to sponsor and attend blood drives and other SRCC functions. Thank you David for helping all of our donors and volunteers!


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

I was looking for opportunities to do community service, and a friend of mine recommended that I come to a meeting, and I have been involved in the club since last winter. I think that the Red Cross does important work across our community and the world, and I just want to help them to do it.

Do you donate blood? If so, Why?

I have not given blood yet, but I would like to soon. I am thinking about donating for the upcoming Michigan State vs. Penn State blood challenge.

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

One piece of advice that I would give is to not be afraid because the nurses are very experienced as this is the job that they do every day. They are there to make the experience of giving blood as painless as possible. Another reason to give blood is because it can save up to three lives, making this one of the most selfless things that you can do.

Why do you enjoy being an OSC?

Being able to serve the community is always a good feeling. Being an OSC also gives me the experience in the field of management and leadership, which I believe is a necessary skill in life and in my future career.

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

We reach out and gather donors. A lot of people don’t give blood because they’re never asked to. SRCC is the bridge between the blood drives and the potential donors. We also help promote and educate students about giving blood, which is important across our community.

Photo Credit: Sean Rayford for the New York Times

Hurricane Matthew: How You Can Help

Photo Credit: Sean Rayford for the New York Times

Over the past week across Florida and the Southeastern United States, Hurricane Matthew has wreaked havoc and sent more than 27,000 people to almost 200 Red Cross and community shelters. This includes 22,000 people in Florida alone going to 133 shelters across the state. As people seek shelter and try to stay safe from this storm, more the 1,800 Red Cross workers are active or traveling to the southeast to assist at shelters and response teams. As a result of the storm, many blood drives across the southeastern coast have been cancelled resulting in an urgent need for blood and platelet donations. The cancellation of over 30 blood drives across 3 states has resulted in over 1,300 donations uncollected and there are likely to be more cancellations in the foreseeable future as the storm rolls on. The loss of platelet donations are especially concerning because they are a key component in blood needed by cancer patients. In part of the country that have been affected by the storm, the Red Cross strongly urges those individuals who are eligible to give blood to do so soon in order to ensure a steady supply of blood and platelets to those who may need the blood urgently. Appointments can be made by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Coach Spence and Track and Field athletes at their sponsored blood drive on Sept. 29th

Track and Field Athletes Bleed Blue for Coach Spence

The Penn State Track and Field team has sponsored an annual blood drive for the past several years–because for them, it’s personal.

Assistant Track and Field Coach Fritz Spence has defeated Leukemia twice (in 2008 and in 2013), and was at last week’s Homecoming blood drive supporting his athletes who were donating. As a former cancer patient, multiple months in the hospital meant countless blood transfusions for Coach Spence. He said he was “happy and proud” to see his athletes turn out to donate.

Athlete Kasey Kemp has been donating blood at the Track and Field sponsored drive for the past five years. “It helped [Coach Spence] a lot, so I think about that a lot when I donate blood,” Kemp said.

With Kemp was Steph Sievers, another T&F athlete and first time blood donor. “The experience was better than I expected–the people were great and talked me through everything,” Sievers said. When asked about how she overcame her anxiety towards donating blood, she “just thought about where it goes.” A single red cell blood donation can help save up to three lives, and the need for blood in America is constant.

Coach Spence’s message to those who are apprehensive about giving blood? “Get informed and stay educated–it’s such a simple procedure that has a huge impact.”

Breast Cancer ribbon

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Photo Credit:

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month in the United States. This month, the Red Cross encourages donors to give blood to support cancer patients and others who might be in need of life saving blood donations.

Breast Cancer is the second most common cancer among women in the U.S., and Breast cancer patients may need blood donations during chemotherapy, mastectomy surgery or other treatments.
By giving blood during this month, you are helping the patients who suffer from Breast Cancer make it through another day. These people need blood and donor supply is the only way to get blood to them if they need a transfusion.
So please give blood this month to help those who have all forms of cancer and other life threatening diseases or injuries. No matter your blood type, but especially those with O negative, B negative, A negative and AB blood, if you can give blood, please do to help others who need it.
To make an appointment to donate blood, download the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Homecoming Blood Drive

Homecoming is right around the corner, which means it’s time to bleed blue and white! The Student Red Cross Club will be hosting a special Homecoming blood drive on Thursday, September 29th at the HUB in Alumni Hall from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm.

Did you know that donors and volunteers can receive Homecoming spirit points for their organization?

○ Members of your organization, pair or triad should sign-­in to donate at the Blood Drive to receive 10 points per member (Up to 10 members).

○ If you pre­-register to donate at the blood drive, you can earn up to 12 points per    member.

○ If a member of your organization volunteers at the blood drive, you may receive 5 spirit points per 2 hour shift (Up to 5 members).

○ Organizations can earn up to 195 points by donating or volunteering at the blood drive.

As one of our Bleed Blue Blood Drives, every donor is also automatically entered to win a Penn State® Football home game package for 2016, which includes two Mt. Nittany Club tickets, pre-game hospitality passes, a sideline visit during the game, and Beaver Stadium video board recognition!

Every two seconds, someone in America needs blood. Make sure to eat a good meal 1-2 hours before donating and drink plenty of water on the day of your donation. Donors must be 16 yrs. of age or older and have a valid photo ID to donate.

Please visit or call 1-800-RED CROSS for more information on how to register to donate. For more information on Homecoming spirit points, please visit

SRCC September Recap

This September has been a very exciting start to the year for this club. From our first general meeting to our first canning weekend, we’ve had a great start this year!

Early in September, we had our first meeting, where we met so many new members and were able to catch up with old friends from last year. We were able to introduce prospective members to what we do as a club and were able to grow our family with these new members and volunteers.

On September 11th, the Student Red Cross Club hosted a booth in the HUB, asking people passing by to commemorate 9/11 by telling us about who their heroes are. We collected those responses and now have our very own hero board, which has answers from all types of members of the Penn State Community.

On September 12th-13th, the club held our annual 9/11 blood drives, which were very successful in collecting blood in partnership with 9/11-day foundation in commemoration of the tragic events that took place on that day. The Penn State ROTC sponsored one of the drives. They hosted it in their building and it drew in many members of the ROTC to give blood and volunteer, making it a very successful drive.

On the week of September 19th, the club also hosted it’s first triple-header blood drive of the year in the HUB, collecting units from many students and other members of the Penn State community over the course of the three days. Greek life was very active in these drives as well, sponsoring and donating many times over the three days.

Lastly, the club went on our first canning weekend on the weekend of the 23rd. We visited the Angus family and went canning in and around the Camp Hill area. It is always a good weekend when canning, and getting to know our new members and spending time with friends is always fun as well!

This September has been an exciting time for our club, and it will only get better!

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.

The Red Cross Partners with 9/11 Day to save lives in commemoration of the September 11th attacks.

On the fifteenth anniversary of the September 11th attacks, The Red Cross is teaming with 9/11 day to observe the day by saving lives through the donation of blood and platelets.

9/11 Day is an organization dedicated to honoring the victims and heroes of that day through community service. It has evolved into the largest day of charitable activities in the United States and has now been reserved as a national day of service and remembrance by the U.S. Government.

The Red Cross needs approximately 14,000 blood donations every day to help improve and even save lives in over 2,600 health care centers around the country. This partnership with 9/11 day will help the Red Cross to meet and even exceed that goal through the generosity of their donors and volunteers.

Donna M. Morrissey, director of national partnerships, Red Cross Biomedical Services gave a statement, saying; “The Red Cross is proud to join 9/11 Day and empower members of our communities to give blood and volunteer to commemorate this anniversary while making a profound contribution to community preparedness. Let us honor the memory of those who gave so much to help others, and do our part to help those in need this September.”

Those who would like to donate or volunteer on this day of service are encouraged to do so via or through their local Red Cross chapter to find an opportunity to commemorate September 11th with the Red Cross and 9/11 Day.