My name is Matt Avery. I am a senior and the Webmaster for the Student Red Cross Club. I am currently one donation away from having donated one gallon of of blood. That's a huge milestone for me because I used to have a huge fear of both needles and blood. This fear kept me from volunteer opportunities at my high school blood drives. When I got to college, I continued to avoid all things blood. Finally, in the spring of sophomore year I decided to conquer my fear and donate blood. Much to my surprise it was extremely easy and painless. This was such a good experience that the following year I decided to join the Penn State Student Red Cross Club and instantly fell in love with the work we do and the people that make up the club. Countless hours of volunteer hours and seven donations later, I have successfully conquered my fears.
My most recent blood donation held extra significance for me as it was the first productive unit of blood collected for the Penn State - Michigan State Blood Donor Challenge. It was especially quick compared to my previous donations, which made the process even easier. Though the satisfaction of being able to say I was the first unit is great, nothing can top the feeling that I helped save peoples lives. I may never meet the recipients of my blood, but that does not lessen the importance of the act. It's truly wonderful knowing that by giving up a minuscule amount of my time, I'm able to have a huge impact on the life of another.
For The Glory!