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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Student club holds campus challenge informing students on becoming organ donors

Noelle+R.+Haro-Gomez%2F+Arizona+Daily+Wildcat%0A%0AFrom+the+left%2C+Sarah+Naves%2C+Mariana+Valencia%2C+Jayme+Gosney+and+Kelsey+Hill%2C+vollunteers+for+UA+Students+for+Organ+Donation%2C+to+register+new+donors.+The+booth+will+be+out+all+week+infront+of+the+administration+building+by+the+UA+mall.
Noelle R. Haro-Gomez/ Arizona Daily Wildcat From the left, Sarah Naves, Mariana Valencia, Jayme Gosney and Kelsey Hill, vollunteers for UA Students for Organ Donation, to register new donors. The booth will be out all week infront of the administration building by the UA mall.

A UA student club squared off against universities and colleges throughout the state to register as many organ and tissue donors as possible.

Students for Organ Donation participated in the Donate Life Campus Challenge, which lasted from Sept. 12 to Oct. 12. While the numbers for the competition are not yet available, Arizona State University was announced the winner of the competition.

Students for Organ Donation managed to sign up more than 40 students, despite issues with the Associated Students of the University of Arizona’s club recognition process.

The goal of the challenge, which began in 2008, is to inform students of how becoming an organ donor can save lives across the nation.

College students are generally enthusiastic about volunteering and helping save lives, said Kris Patterson, a spokesperson for Donor Network for Arizona.

“There is such passion in people for donation and we want to honor that passion while using it for good cause and saving lives,” Patterson said.

Nathan Sherman, a psychology junior and president of the club, became more aware of the issue after he became a tissue recipient.

While playing baseball for the UA when he was 18, Sherman injured his knee playing baseball and required donated tissue to help recover. After the injury, Sherman said he was inspired to get involved and help raise awareness about the possibilities of saving lives through organ donation.

“That made me count my blessing and made me realize how important it is and let others know how important this is,” he said.

In the past month, Sherman led the challenge on campus in hopes of recruiting more potential donors than the other universities. The key part of the challenge was to let students know that more than 100,000 people all over the country are in need of organ donation, and that each registry can save a life.

Despite the UA’s loss, Sherman is still determined to register more students by tabling on the UA Mall and partnering with Chi Omega sorority to bring more awareness to the cause, he said.

Like Sherman, other students got involved in the club due to their own experiences with organ donation.

Mariana Valencia, a junior studying psychology and nutrition, and treasure of the club, said she had a personal motivation to go out and get people to sign up after becoming a liver transplant recipient.

“It saved my life and it’s a great cause,” she said.

Being emotionally attached to the club and the challenge, Valencia said it is important for students to understand what the club is trying to pursue and understand the importance of becoming donors.

The club has been tabling on the UA Mall this past month to register organ donors, and will continue to do so this week.

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