York students participate in blood drive


Photo by Honey Tey

As many as 140 students and teachers came out to donate blood for the drive. Thurs., Oct 19, 2017

Hundreds of students gathered in the South Gym throughout the day on Thurs., Oct. 19, 2017 to donate blood for York and Lifesource’s annual blood drive.


York typically hosts at least four or more blood drives per year to meet the Lifesource’s quota. This year’s first blood drive was organized by Vice President of Student Council, Meghan Ferreri, who stated that there were over 140 people who signed up to donate. That’s more than the amount of last year’s blood drive count of 101 people in April.


“On Sunday, 80 people signed up. On Monday and Tuesday, [an additional] 60 people signed up,” said Ferreri. “To go from 101 people last April to more than 140 people is insane.”

Photo by Honey Tey
Outside of the donation section, students sat patiently while waiting to be called up. Thurs., Oct 19, 2017

Not only did students participate, some parents and teachers took the initiative to participate as well. Such is the case of Administrative Assistant to the Principal, Mrs. Kelly Corry, who’s a frequent donor and has participated in almost every drive each year.


“Doing the process, to me, takes about a whole hour,” said Mrs. Corry. “I do it because I’ve had family members that needed emergency blood [transfusion] and it’s always good to donate and give back.”


The process of a blood donation typically takes about a period to complete with an interview that provides a mini physical evaluation to determine the donor eligibility, followed by the donation, then refreshments.

Photo by Honey Tey
Students sat outside of the interviewing cubicles waiting to be called up while reviewing the donor eligibility red binders. Thurs., Oct 19, 2017

In order for students to participate in this event, they must be 16 and older with a parental consent form. Of course, this may not be the case for many underclassman. But several students have already begun to plan their visit to the event when they reach the age of consent.  


“I’m excited about donating blood when I turn 16 because I know how many lives it [can] save,” said freshman Colin McNamara. “It’s a good thing to do and it makes you feel right on the inside because it feels like you’ve accomplished something.”

Photo by Honey Tey
After donating, Juniors Olivia Gifford (front) and Ashley Homolka (back) are seated in the refreshment isle, where they are provided with plenty of water, juice, and snacks to replenish. Thurs., Oct 19, 2017

Started in April of 2002, York partnered up with LifeSource to host blood drives throughout the school year in an effort to give back to the community. Since then, there has been a record of 46 drives at York with a total of 3,646 units collected.


The units are typically sent to both local and city hospitals to ensure the supply never runs out in a time of need. Other units are sometimes sent to emergency situations that demand the need for blood, as seen in recent natural disasters like Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Harvey or the Las Vegas massacre.


“A few weeks ago when the Las Vegas massacre occurred, within 24 hours, [the local hospitals] had all the blood needed,” said Kathleen Meyer, Marketing and Media Lead of Lifesource. “We sent 200 to 300 units within the first day. Lots of times [when] those things happen, blood has always been donated [by us]. Afterward, we have to restock the supplies [that were] already used [because we] go through blood really fast.”

Photo by Honey Tey
Senior Emily Leonard listens to music while donating blood to help the cause. Thurs., Oct 19, 2017

There’s always a constant need for blood donation to ensure an adequate blood supply. Large amounts of units are often sent to hospitals immediately to reach those who are in need of transfusion. While the number of students that donated were high, there was definitely the possibility of increasing the number.

“[Donating blood] isn’t something that people even think about until their life is affected by it. It’s something that we cannot make and there’s only one way of making it– through donors,” said Fran Engstrom, a volunteer with the Lifesource blood drive and Brightlife Ambassador. “If somebody is able to come up with an additive to, say, animal blood, we wouldn’t have to beg people to donate. But so far that hasn’t happen, so we have to rely on people to donate. The younger we get them aware of the need for blood, the longer they’ll donate throughout their lifetime.”

Photo taken by Honey Tey
“It’s my first time donating, I’m a little nervous because I’ve never done it before,” said senior Nibia Joseph, who donated for the first time on Thursday. Thurs., Oct 19, 2017