Red Cross club to hold blood drive April 27


Emma Short

Mannequins stand in anatomy teacher Jennifer Bishop’s room to demonstrate the body systems. One blood donation has the possibility to save up to three lives.

The Red Cross club will host a school-wide blood drive on April 27 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the small gym for the first time since 2019. 

Sign-up applications were available for both teachers and students on the Red Cross website, and all 125 slots have been filled. 

“When we first got on the [Red Cross] site, they only had 86 slots, and after day two, 68 of those spots were taken,” Red Cross club sponsor and anatomy teacher Jennifer Bishop said. “[Our sponsor with the Red Cross] moved it up to 100, and before the [next] week, we had 100 [donors]. We also have the ability to do it in the fall, so [we] can have a fall and a spring [blood drive]. What I [am] going to look into next is maybe doing it twice a year again.”

Sixteen-year-old students require a permission slip to donate, and all donors must bring a proof of age and school ID. Clubs like Science National Honor Society and Student Council are offering volunteer hours for students who donate blood. In addition, anatomy teachers like Bishop are offering extra credit for students who donate blood, hoping to further motivate students to sign up. 

“I tell my anatomy students that I want to make them life-long [donors],” Bishop said. “I try to properly motivate them to go and try it for the first time. When I came here, another teacher was teaching anatomy, and eventually she grew the program [and] they needed an additional teacher. She always [offered] extra credit for blood donations, so I’ve carried on that tradition since she’s left.”

Bishop was the first sponsor of the club, and this is the first year the Red Cross club is hosting the blood drive. Before the initial surge of COVID-19, Student Council hosted a blood drive twice a year, but since StuCo sponsor Jennifer Russell had never hosted the drive before, Bishop offered to take over. Bishop said her goal for the drive is for students to realize giving blood is not as bad as they think it is.

“It’s really an easy way to give back,” Bishop said. “I donated in high school, I’ve done it periodically and I believe everybody should do what little they can, whether it’s donating coats, blankets, food [or blood]. If you do it twice a year, it’s 30 minutes of your life [to] help six people.”