Driven for good

Blood drive creates opportunity for change


Cole Taylor

Sophomore Ari Rose gets blood drawn on Feb 9th. This was the first blood drive at Park in 2023.

Caedon Exsted and Maren Wilsey

To help take action during the ongoing global blood shortage, Park students and staff joined the cause by giving blood on Feb. 9. 

After donating, Park students and staff reflected on their experience. For DECA advisor Abby Lugo,  the experience was an opportunity to give back to the community. 

“It’s the chance for our community to get involved in saving lives,” Lugo said. “We are in a blood shortage right now so bringing this opportunity to students during the school day is a way that we can recruit and successfully make an impact on the global blood shortage.” 

According to sophomore Ari Rose, anyone who could donate blood should help the cause. 

“Anyone who is eligible should definitely do it just because you’re saving lives,” Rose said. “It is important because you’re saving lives.”

Business operations supervisor Abby Schrader said even though it is a serious issue, the demand for blood isn’t discussed as much as it should be.

“It’s a need, and it’s a hidden need,” Schrader said. “It’s really a life or death situation and it’s not highlighted enough.”

According to Lugo, the rewarding feeling gained from giving blood alone is enough reason for anyone to do it, and it contributes to something bigger than themselves.  

“It’s really important that people play a role in society for the greater good,” Lugo said. “How many times can you go home and say, ‘hey, I saved three lives today?’” 

According to Rose, he recognized the significance of contributing to a greater cause.

“I felt it was important that I donate some blood — some blood that I may not necessarily need and other people might,” Rose said. “I just wanted to help. That was probably the highlight of my day.”

Schrader said she prefers to allow students to have the chance to participate themselves, before she takes advantage of the opportunity. 

“I don’t sign up unless there’s slots available so I come the day of — always wait and let the students have the first dibs,” Schrader said. “For me, if students ask about it, I’ll just explain my truth and what I believe — why I do this.”

Lugo said she hopes to have the blood drives become a regular occurrence at Park, and would like to involve more students in the future.

“We would love to have these three or four times a year,” Lugo said. “The DECA club oversees the blood drives that we host here. I would love to grow (a partnership) with the CNA class because this is a good fit for them.”