Every nine minutes, someone is added to the organ donor waitlist, and more than 100,000 people are waiting for a lifesaving transplant, according research by Tyler Hill, Siobhan Sungenis and Connor Wambold.
The three Shippensburg University students spent the past semester doing both primary and secondary research working with the Gift of Life College Campaign as a part of their independent study for the upper-level Communication, Journalism and Media course on public relations research and campaigns.
The Gift of Life organization works to make a link between those who choose to donate organs and tissues and those in need of a transplant, according to the organization’s website. The college campaign for Gift of Life is a competition hosted across East Coast college campuses to increase organ and tissue donation awareness as well as add to the growing list of names on the organ donation registry.
On April 19, Hill, Sungenis and Wambold hosted an event for the Gift of Life College Campaign in the Ceddia Union Building Multi-Purpose Room. At the event, students were able to paint in the leaves of the group’s “Tree of Life” picture. They also handed out materials that informed students on organ and tissue donation.
“Twenty people die every day due to not receiving an organ transplant due to lack of organs,” Sungenis said, urging the importance of becoming an organ and donor.
The group hid keys around campus that had a slip of paper tied to them with a message from the campaign. Students who brought the keys to the CUB MPR received a tie-dyed T-shirt or a wristband with the campaign’s logo.
“As classes come to an end, this is our last event,” Sungenis said, “But hopefully the organ and tissue donation awareness will still be continued on campus in the future.”