Monthly Archives: November 2017

Do you donate blood? You could help save someone’s life!

Donating blood is one of the easiest ways to give back to the community.Did you know that CCE staff schedule multiple blood drives on campus every year? Bonfils Blood Center and Penrose-St. Francis Blood Bank both come and accept donations for two days each semester, and Bonfils is here for another day each summer. You can find their welcoming and professionally trained staff in Worner.

Donating blood is highly regulated by the FDA and is very safe. Sterile, disposable needles and supplies are used once and are safely discarded after each donation. You cannot get HIV/AIDS or any other disease by donating blood.

From the time you first arrive, the process takes less than an hour – but typically only 5-10 minutes of that will be actually be the donation. The rest consists of a short medical history and mini-physical.

Typically, donating blood has four steps:

  1. Registration: You will be asked to provide basic information about yourself such as your name, address and age. You will then be instructed to read or review important donor information.
  2. Medical History Interview: After answering a series of personal questions about your medical history, a blood bank professional will escort you into a private interview area. There you will be asked additional confidential questions and your medical history assessed for donation eligibility.
  3. Mini Physical and Blood Donation: A drop of blood will be taken from your finger and analyzed for red blood cell concentration. This process will assure blood bank staff that your red blood cell count is adequate for you to donate. Your blood pressure, temperature and pulse rate are taken. After all requirements are met, a phlebotomist will cleanse and sterilize an area of your arm. A sterile needle is then inserted in your arm to collect the blood. The collection process will take about 5-10 minutes.
  4. Refreshments: After the donation is completed, you will relax and enjoy juice and tasty snacks. This recovery time will aid your body in replacing the volume you lost during the donation.

Donor & Medical Requirements:

In general, donors must:

  • be in good health
  • weigh at least 110 pounds
  • be symptom free of cold or flu
  • be 18 years of age (if 16 or 17-years-old, may donate with written parental consent)
  • From now on – TATTOOS ARE ACCEPTABLE if the tattoo was applied in a state-regulated shop within the last 12 months

Many medications are acceptable for blood donations including those for high blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes. If you were deferred in the past from donating blood, please try again. Most deferrals are temporary and deferral restrictions may change.

Interested in participating?

Penrose-St. Francis will be staffing the next blood drive on Wednesday, December 6th and Thursday, December 7th, from 12:00pm-3:00pm in the Worner Lounge. Penrose Blood Bank accepts donors at age 16 with parental consent. Please call 719-776-5822 if you have questions.  All donors must have a driver’s license, and walk-Ins are welcome.

While you are deciding whether you should donate blood or note, here are some interesting factsabout blood donation in the United States:

  • 5 million Americans will a need blood transfusion each year
  • Someone needs blood every two seconds
  • Only 37 percent of the U.S. population is eligible to donate blood – less than 10 percent do annually
  • One pint of blood can save up to three lives
  • 5 gallons: amount of blood you could donate if you begin at age 17 and donate every 56 days until you reach 79 years old
  • If there are 100 people in a room, 46 will have type O blood, 40 will have type A, 10 will have type B and four will have type AB
  • Shortages of all blood types happen during the summer and winter holidays
  • Giving blood will not decrease your strength

For more information about blood donation and other programs that Bonfils Blood Center and Penrose Hospital have visit their websites: and

Information provided by Bonfils Blood Center and Penrose St. Francis Blood Bank, compiled by Julia Bazavluk.

What is BreakOut?

What is BreakOut? To find out more about this incredible organization, we talked to Ali Baird and Anthony Siracusa. Ali is a current CC student and the BreakOut Co-Chair, and Anthony is the CCE’s new Engaged Learning Specialist. They talked about what BreakOut does, why it is so special, and what they have planned for the organization in the future.

Ali described the organization and what makes it important to Colorado College.

BreakOut is a community engagement organization at CC that maintains relationships with many non-profits in the surrounding Colorado Springs community, such as the Marian House, Greccio Housing, and Family Promise. We rely on those relationships to organize Saturday, block break, and alternative spring break trips for students. Our trips are intended to introduce CC students to as many organizations as possible that work in a variety of different issues, including homelessness, environmental stewardship, and food security. Through BreakOut trips, we hope that students find organizations of interest to then engage in sustainable, long-term community engagement. In a sense, BreakOut is a stepping-stone for continued service work.

Anthony discussed how he thinks BreakOut is special to CC.

I am still very new to CC – and thus still learning every day about the many outstanding opportunities afforded our students.  But it seems that BreakOut is unique here at CC in that it combines travelling with community engagement.  Through our Block Break program in particular, students are able to explore Colorado and its surrounding regions while engaging in meaningful work with a community partner. ASB is very similar in that regard, and increasingly we want to help CC students learn about the people, places, and issues they encounter while doing their community work.

Anthony further discussed the importance of the block break and ASB trips for CC students gaining a sense of place.

The Block Break and ASB trips both allow students to spend time “learning in place” – that is, to spend time thinking about challenges and issues that emerge in particular locations.  For example, our students traveled recently to Mission: Wolf on a Block Break trip.  For some students, the Mission: Wolf trip was an opportunity to build on knowledge they developed in natural sciences course about habitat preservation and the protection of animal populations.  For other students, the trip was a hands-on introduction to these issues.  Being in the mountains, amidst wolves that are being supported as they transition back into the wild, provided students with an engaged learning opportunity under the guidance of staff experts at Mission: Wolf.
For ASB this year, we are exploring the possibility of a trip to Puerto Rico for hurricane relief.  In preparation for the trip, we are hopeful to discuss larger issues that arise when thinking about hurricanes – issues like community resilience amidst climate change and the history of Puerto Rico as an American territory.  We are hopeful that these student learning opportunities can supplement the experience of being in Puerto Rico and engaging in relief work.
The Mission: Wolf and ASB trips both offer CC students the chance to learn in place – to better understand a challenge or an issue by not only conducting research and reading, but to develop a relationship with a local partner who can also serve as a guide and educator to our students as they engage in community work.

In terms of future goals for the organization, Anthony is hoping to work on making BreakOut trips a more in-depth learning experience.

One thing our student leaders have discussed is strengthening the learning component on our trips.  This would include workshops and orientations to places and issues in advance of a trip, routine dialogue and discourse about what students are learning and experiencing on a trip, and sufficient time to debrief and reflect at the conclusion of trips.  BreakOut has been an excellent venue for students to explore issues and challenges, and increasingly we are hopeful that the trips can be an opportunity for students to discern and reflect and think about how they can grapple with the challenges facing our communities.

Ali stated three main goals for the coming year:

  1. Listen to student input and plan trips that match student interests!
  2. Create a stronger community of trip leaders and participants on campus so that we can brainstorm ideas!
  3. Provide more trip leader trainings and send more trips out!

Excited about the possibility of pursuing community engagement through BreakOut? According to Ali, “students can get involved by signing up for any of our trips on Summit, attending one of our leader trainings, or reaching out to one of our leaders: Ali Baird, Amy Daugherty, and Jesse Shaich. We would be happy to speak with anyone who wants to get involved, especially if you have any trip ideas!”


Contact Ali Baird, BreakOut Co-Chair at

Or Anthony Siracusa, Engaged Learning Specialist at

Want to find out more? Visit the CCE website here:

Interviews and content by Claire Derry.