School Blood Drive Successful but Doesn’t Reach Full Potential

By Brianna Meeks

On Friday, Oct. 11, DECA students hosted a blood drive in the Tuscarora auxiliary gym, giving students all over the school the opportunity to give back to the community.

DECA, a student marketing organization, partnered with the local INOVA Health System to have the blood drive. DECA officer junior Peter Chopivsky was one of the students involved in the organization of the event, as he contacted INOVA and made plans for the set-up of the aux gym.

Those in the organization process had a few obstacles, mostly in the form of procrastination. Students signed up during the week and received passes on Thursday that would get them out of class on Friday for the blood drive. At first there was an incredibly small number of people signed up, and Chopivsky says, “We had to cut it a little short. But then, at the last minute, 20 or 30 people turned in their forms.”

On the other hand, blood donors had their own varying psychological obstacles to overcome. Junior Tony James wasn’t nervous about giving blood, saying, “I’ve never had a [fear] of needles or blood before.” Conversely, senior Kirsten Fleming said before the blood drive, “I just don’t want to pass out. I almost passed out [last year], and it’s embarrassing.”  Fainting does seem to be a somewhat regular occurrence at blood drives, and donors were cautioned to eat before giving blood.

As a whole, Tuscarora students donated 55 pints of blood. While it is admirable that students are stepping up to the plate, some believe we could have done better. Chopivsky says, “We’re hoping for a better turnout next time.”

When asked why she gave blood, Fleming said, “Blood is easy to give, and they need blood.” According to the INOVA Blood Donor Services website, high school donors save 40,000 lives each year just by giving blood.