SMC Hosts Red Cross Blood Drive
On March 19 and 20, The Red Cross came to the Santa Monica College (SMC) Main Campus quad to host two blood drives. Students came in who had planned to donate ahead of time and others simply strolled by and decided to give something back. Sean Inoue, the representative of The Red Cross who organized the event, discussed how college students are key to upkeeping the national blood supply.
“Actually between 25-30 percent of the blood we collect in Southern California comes from our high schools and colleges,” stated Inoue.
Inoue hosts around 50 blood drives a month at various college campuses, high schools, and businesses around West Los Angeles. These drives can collect anywhere from 30 pints of blood all the way up to 45 pints.
“Typically we usually host around two blood drives a quarter through the Red Cross and that usually translates into around 60 to 80 pints of blood. Multiply that by three and that’s the number of patients we can impact with that, so if we collect 40 pints of blood, for example, that's up to about 120 patients. We use the red blood cells, the platelets, and the plasma from a donor’s donation to impact a patient with whatever they need,” explained Inoue.
Events like these depend on campus volunteers, such as Glenn Mored, an SMC student and member of the Pre Health Association Club, who managed the sign-ups and provided essential reassurance to those that were nervous about donating for the first time.
In order to comfort students, Mored explained “after you donate blood you receive an email a few weeks later telling you who your blood went to. They always get excited about that.”
The Red Cross keeps track of exactly where and to whom blood is donated. Mored likes to volunteer because he loves to help people and to see the difference that drives like these make. “Getting those emails after we donate, that’ll say ‘hey you saved this four-year-old boy from his disease.’ It’s great you know, how do I not enjoy it, it’s a moral thing I guess,” said Mored.
Jasmine Rivera, one of many SMC students who donated blood, decided to begin giving blood on a regular basis. She also convinced some of her friends to come and donate along with her. Rivera advises new donors to ask questions and to express any concerns one may have.
No matter how much blood is given at a blood drive there is always a demand for more. Inoue, Mored, and Rivera all asked for students and faculty alike to try and donate at least once in their life and more if they can.