ROTC Blood Drive

By: Celeste Powell, Student Life Editor

At 10 a.m., on Jan. 15, in the CETES Conference Center, The Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) hosted a blood drive, attracting twenty-four donors, fourteen of whom donated red blood cells in a process called Power Red donation. Power Red donation allows type O, and A negative and B negative donors the ability to donate two units of red blood cells during one appointment.
Oklahoma Blood Institute (OBI) sponsor Zelda Sullivan said blood is needed by almost every patient receiving a blood transfusion.
“Each donor helps save as many as three lives,” Sullivan said. “Without donors, someone’s life is not possible. Blood only comes from donors like those at Cameron University.”
OBI is the sole supplier of blood for local and area hospitals. They also supply air ambulances.
Military science instructor John Sheehan said ROTC’s blood drive is about giving back to the Lawton community.
“We are members of the community as well,” he said. “We want to set them [ROTC cadets] up as people first, then as soldiers.”
The mission of Cameron’s ROTC program is to prepare the leaders of tomorrow.
ROTC provides color guards (soldiers who present flags during ceremonious occasions) within Lawton and as far as Oklahoma City.
ROTC hopes blood drives will provide students opportunities to connect with both the Lawton and military communities.
“We are working on reaching out to the Lawton Veterans center,” Sheehan said, “giving the cadets an opportunity to interact with veterans.”
According to the U.S. Army’s official website, Cameron is one of over 1,000 colleges and universities nationwide that offers merit-bases scholarships for those enrolled in the program.
The Oklahoma, Arkansas and Texas Blood Institute comprise the ninth largest blood institute in the United States, providing every supply of blood for 164 medical facilities.
The Oklahoma Blood Institute website recommends what people can expect before, during and after donating blood: Before donating, eat well; try to include iron-rich foods into your meal and drink plenty of fluids.
There will also be a short physical to ensure you are healthy enough to donate.
Blood donation typically lasts about 20 minutes to collect one unit (about a pint) of blood. After donation, the OBI encourages participants to enjoy juice and cookies to replenish their body.
They also recommend refraining from heavy lifting or strenuous physical activity for the next 24 hours.
For more information, contact the Oklahoma Blood Institute in Lawton at 580-353-6451.

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