UF is competing to sign up as many students as possible to save lives.
The UF Athletic Training Program is taking part in a challenge against other athletic programs to register people as potential bone marrow donors, said Patricia Tripp, the director and clinical education coordinator of the program. The other universities competing are Louisiana State University, the University of South Carolina and the University of Alabama.
The program will host a donor registration event today from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the front lawn of the infirmary building The program wants to get as many people as possible to register for Be The Match Registry, which is operated by the National Marrow Donor Program.
At the event, representatives from Be The Match and the athletic program will be conducting cheek swabs to register people between 18 and 44 years of age. The individuals will then fill out paperwork, she said.
“If you’re a match, you will get a call and then you go through a blood transfusion and hopefully get to save a life,” Tripp said.
Emma Popowski, a 19-year-old nursing freshman, registered to be a bone marrow donor during Dance Marathon this year.
She said she registered because she doesn’t believe anyone should die as a result of someone else being scared to donate bone marrow.
“I think it’s important for other people to give bone marrow, because if they’re healthy, then they’re lucky to be healthy, so why not help someone else?” she said.