Students lined up in Poly Canyon Village (PCV) to donate blood on Wednesday. The blood drive is the first of three to be held on campus.
Some students, such as biological sciences sophomore Brittany Pattee, enjoyed the positive feeling felt after donating blood.
“It makes me feel good helping other people,” Pattee said. “I have donated a lot before.”
Barbara Wright, an eligibility reader for United Blood Services which put on the blood drives, said this particular branch is located in San Luis Obispo, but they have an office in Santa Maria as well.
“Cal Poly is one of our largest participants in donating blood which is why we are on campus so often,” she said.
Wright said they usually bring one bus, which holds a staff of about eight people.
“Sometimes we bring multiple buses due to the great response on campus,” she said. “We always have a lot of repeat donors.”
United Blood Services encourages students to give blood through offers such as free t-shirts for every donor and other promotions as well.
“We are happy to accept anyone who wants to give blood as long as they meet the criteria,” Wright said.
Donors must weight 110 pounds, eat and drink fluids before arriving, must be at least 17 years old and bring a photo ID. They also cannot be sick, on antibiotics or have acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS).
After donors are checked in and confirmed as eligible, students are required to fill out a short form with their information.
Wright said on average it takes about 45 minutes to an hour on average to give blood depending on how long the wait is.
“We really appreciate all of the college students who take time out of their day to donate blood,” she said.
The service tries to be as quick and efficient as possible, since workers know that students are on a busy schedule, she said. At this particular drive, United Blood Services is set up to draw blood from six people at one time.
Several of the donors on Wednesday had donated blood before.
Tiffany Loh, a business administration sophomore, said donating blood is something she enjoys doing.
“It’s my second time donating at Cal Poly but my fourth time overall,” Loh said.
Other students, such as business administration sophomore Kyle Niner, were donating for the first time.
“It seemed like a good idea, so I thought I would try it,” he said.
The reason many students donate their time and blood is to help out others.
Jenna Epperson, a biological sciences sophomore, is a second time donor and plans to continue to donate because it makes her feel good.
“I enjoy knowing that I am saving lives and helping others,” Epperson said.
The blood drive will be set up for the second and third times on Thursday from 2 to 7 p.m. and Friday from 3 to 7 p.m.