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Melissa Dickson, of the American Red Cross, preps Weber State University senior Chris Brown for a blood donation at Weber State University's blood drive on Thursday, Sept 1. (Emily Crooks / The Signpost)

Yesterday marked the end of this year’s annual blood drive competition between Weber State University and Utah State University, at least for Weber State University. USU has one more day in the competition. The blood drive is being hosted by American Red Cross and is being held until today at USU, but it ended yesterday at WSU.

USU has donated more total units than WSU, but WSU has surpassed its target donation goal. USU is close to their own goal and, “In terms of numbers, USU has about 130 [units of blood donated] each day,” said Mario Volante, Red Cross account manager in the Donor Recruitment Department.

“The first three days were really great,” said Volante. “We met our goal each day.” Yesterday saw a fair amount of traffic but slowed down after the initial rush, but they projected meeting their goal. In fact, throughout the week, each day, the volunteers surpassed their goal of units donated. Monday passed their goal of 51 with 54 collected. Tuesday’s goal was 41, but there were 57 units donated. Wednesday and Thursday were projected to be similar, but donation totals were not immediately available.

“The school with the most blood donations will have bragging rights for a full year,” said Tammy Nakamura, external communications manager for the Lewis and Clark Blood Services Region. “We truly appreciate the efforts and enthusiasm for the event that will hopefully generate many blood donations for the American Red Cross.”

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Rebecca Maringer, freshman in Public Relations & Advertising, holds hands with Daysia Willden, BIS Sophomore, while Willden is prepped for a blood donation at Weber State University's blood drive on Thursday, Sept 1. (Emily Crooks / The Signpost)

According to redcrossblood.org, “The blood battle comes at an important time for the Red Cross. An emergency call for blood and platelets is still in effect as blood products continue to be distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in. Eligible donors of all blood types are urged to give now to replenish the extremely low summer blood supply.”

Eligible donors must be individuals who are 17 years or older (16 with guardian permission), weigh at least 110 pounds and be in good health. Donors must have a donor card, a driver’s license or two other forms of identification to check in, as stated on the American Red Cross Website.

Even if donors were unable to give during the drive, Volante wanted to “encourage people to check they’re eligibility. If they can donate blood, they definitely should, and they can go to Redcrossblood.org and schedule an appointment near them.”

Volante went on to say that, “I think everybody wins because we’re collecting blood for people who need it, whether they’re regularly having surgeries and procedures like cancer (treatments), where they need blood or platelets and then for emergency situations. I think everyone’s a winner.”

The winning school in the competition has yet to be declared.

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Michelle Paustenbaugh, Professor of Chemistry at Weber State University, gets bandaged by Melissa Dickson, of the American Red Cross, after getting her blood drawn for Weber State University's blood drive on Thursday, Sept 1. (Emily Crooks / The Signpost)

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