DAYTON, Ohio – The hustle and bustle that comes in December at the University of Dayton didn’t discourage students from donating Tuesday, Sept. 5 at the Virginia W. Kettering Residence Hall blood drive. A lot of credit goes to the big show of “heart” by the Gamma Epsilon Lambda service fraternity, the lead student sponsor group for the blood drive.
“One of our members dressed up like a big heart to promote it at our meeting,” said Mary Henson, a senior from Chicago. “It was literally a big heart costume!”
Mary is a three-year member of Gamma Epsilon Lambda, and she was impressed how her fraternity members responded to the “heart” challenge. Community Blood Center totaled 49 registrations to donate, including 21 first-time donors and 37 blood donations for 100 percent of the collection goal.
It’s a busy time on college campuses. At UD the blood drive came during the final week of fall classes, to be followed by exams next week before packing up and heading home for the holidays.
Leigh Roberts from Indianapolis made her second lifetime donation Tuesday. She made her first donation at UD last year, but was deferred for low iron at the November campus blood drive. Donating successfully before the holidays felt like cramming for an exam and passing with flying colors.
“I really wanted to get my iron up, so I made sure to have a lot of iron-rich foods in my diet,” she said. “I really like donating blood!”
Gamma Epsilon Lambda describes itself as a co-ed service fraternity focusing on leadership and service. They meet bi-weekly on Tuesday evenings to discuss happenings in the fraternity and community. Their projects include student tutoring and community support programs.
Tuesday’s blood drive was the fourth of eight monthly Community Blood Center blood drives UD will host during the 2017-18 academic year. The stop at “VWK” (as the sophomore residence hall is known) is the only campus blood drive not held at the RecPlex.
GEL member Andrew Muno, a senior chemical engineering major from Chicago, made his third lifetime donation. “My first time was in high school, and the first here was my freshman year,” said Andrew. “I enjoy doing it and it’s so easy, but I hadn’t gotten around to it. But this made it easy to sign up and give the time.”
The Marianist tradition of educating the whole person and linking learning and scholarship with leadership and service is alive and well at UD. Tuesday marked the final blood drive of the semester with a long holiday break before the next blood drive on Jan. 24, 2018.