The competition is heating up as the Wolverines battle the
Spartans in yet another event. But this time students must
literally stick to the motto: “No Guts, No Glory.”
From now until March 5, University of Michigan students will
hold a contest against their Michigan State University counterparts
to see which school signs up more people to become organ
The event is sponsored by Gift of Life, a nonprofit organ and
tissue recovery agency in Ann Arbor, which seeks to educate
students on the need for people to donate organs to potential
transplant patients. Once a person agrees to become a donor, then
upon the individual’s death his or her organs will be tested
and given to a suitable transplant patient.
Anyone who wishes to support the University’s cause can
visit www.giftoflifemichigan.org/nogutsnoglory.htm to become a
donor. The organization encourages people of “all ages and
medical histories” to consider becoming donors. No cost is
charged to the donor or the donor’s family.
“So many lives can be changed by the decision to become a
donor,” said Amy Olszewski Gift of Life youth education
Traditionally, individuals have requested to become donors when
they receive their driver’s licenses. But signing the back of
your license is not enough to indicate that you are willing to be
an organ donor, Olszewski said.
She cited the need for potential donors to talk with their
families about any decisions to give their organs, because
“the driver’s license is just not around when the
decision is made…(and in many cases) families just
haven’t talked about it,” she said.
“I think it is an important issue … so many people
just don’t do it, they don’t understand.” LSA
sophomore Christine McKillip said. “We really wanted to
educate the student body on the opportunities (for organ donation)
out there,” McKillip added.
University alum Chris Anderson received a heart transplant from
a Gift of Life donor five years ago. “If it weren’t for
the blood I got, I probably wouldn’t be living,”
When a person signs up to become a donor, he or she receives a
card certifying the choice to donate.
Olszewski said the donor card is important because it clearly
states an individual’s consent to donate — unlike the
driver’s license, which still allows the individual’s
family to override his or her initial wish to donate.
According to Gift of Life, as of Feb. 1 a total of 2,497
Michigan patients were waiting for transplants.
Fifty people can be helped from one donor, and 100 Michigan
residents die waiting for a lifesaving transplant every year.
Currently, the Spartans have 1,050 votes cast by individuals
wishing to become donors, while Michigan is behind with a total of
806 votes as of yesterday. But the battle is not over.
Students, friends and family can also call Gift of Life at
(800)-482-4881 to become listed on its Organ, Tissue and Eye Donor
Students mention their affiliation with the school, so their
donations can be counted towards the contest.