Student organization sponsors drive for bone marrow registration

March 11, 2013
Contact: Office of Communications
865.981.8207; communications@maryvillecollege.edu

Maryville College is teaming with Be The Match®, a national bone marrow donor program, to hold the campus’s first bone marrow registration drive.

Be The Match® representatives and volunteers from the College’s American Chemical Society student affiliate will be in the lobby of Pearsons Hall and in Bartlett Hall’s Isaac’s Café from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m., March 25, to help people register. Registration is free, open to the public, and requires only a simple cheek swab.

“Every four minutes someone in the United States is diagnosed with a blood cancer like leukemia and will need a bone marrow transplant to survive,” said Mary-Mc Alexander, a sophomore biochemistry major and member of the ACS affiliate. “Last year, there were 10,000 leukemia, lymphoma and sickle cell anemia patients looking for a donor match. Only 30 percent of patients in need of a bone marrow transplant can find a match within their family. The other 70 percent rely on donors and depend on Be the Match® registry to find a compatible donor.”

According to Alexander, Maryville College’s drive is part of a national initiative to mobilize college students to register with the National Marrow Donor Program. Last year, more than 200 college campuses participated in the “Give a Spit” campaign and more than 9,000 new donors were formally added to the registry. Anyone 18-44 years old can register, but donors between the ages of 18-24, males, and minority students or those from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds are especially needed.

For more information on the event, contact Linda Hilton of the Cooperative Appalachian Marrow Program at 423.302.5679. For more information on bone marrow donation, visit marrow.org.