Izzy Volbrecht, ‘21, sits at the table after donating blood on Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019, in Lamberton Hall. Alpha Phi and the Community Service Office came together to hold a successful blood drive. (Maggie Goldberg/B&W Staff)

CSO and Alpha Phi host second annual Rivalry blood drive

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The Community Service Office held the second annual Rivalry blood drive in partnership with Alpha Phi on Nov. 13, in Lamberton Hall. 

Community Service Office student coordinator Allison Graham, ‘22, said competing against Lafayette College encourages people to sign up and participate in the blood drive. 

“The competition is motivation to sign up, especially since it is against Lafayette of all places,” Graham said. “But the most important part is that people are saving lives. Each donation can save up to three lives.”

Andrea Pecora, ‘21, donated at the blood drive and said the rivalry aspect is a good incentive. 

“It is definitely a cool extra bonus that goes along with giving,” Pecora said. 

In addition to the incentive of spirited competition, each donor receives a free rivalry t-shirt and a gift card to The Goosey Gander Deli, courtesy of Alpha Phi.

Community Service Office student coordinator Liam Magargal, ‘22, said a lot of blood drives get cancelled during this time of year due to the weather, so it is important to push the signups and get as many donors as possible at each blood drive. 

“Every donation from this drive goes back to the Lehigh Valley in some way, so that personal connection is really important and meaningful,” Magargal said.

Paige Zytkowicz, ‘21, said she appreciates the Community Service Office and Lehigh holding blood drives. 

“I think that it is nice that Lehigh provides this opportunity and makes it so convenient for students,” Zytkowicz said. “It is an easy way for students to make a big impact in the community.” 

In addition to the blood drive, the Community Service Office provides a myriad of service opportunities throughout the year.

“There are a ton of different events and service opportunities that are for everyone,” Magargal said. “You get to meet a lot of cool people from all over campus, since a lot of organizations are involved in service.” 

Graham said Lehigh students should try to reach out and help in any way possible in the South Bethlehem community. For her, community service changed her time and experience at Lehigh.

“It is a tight-knit community, and it’s really cool,” Graham said. 

Magargal emphasized how important it is to volunteer and serve the Lehigh and Bethlehem communities.

“One of the things we really push is that we work with the community, not for it,” Magargal said. “We try to make sure that we make personal connections with the members in our community.”

Graham said students searching for service opportunities should look on the Community Service Office’s website, or visit its office in the University Center. 

Last year, Lehigh beat Lafayette in the inaugural year of the Rivalry blood drive, and donations on campus have increased by more than 65% since then. Both Magargal and Graham said one of the goals for this year’s blood drive was to beat Lafayette. 

“Everyone likes beating Lafayette on this campus,” Magargal said.

Lafayette’s blood drive will be held this week, which will determine which school had the most donations.

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