Montreat College launched its first ever Platelet Drive yesterday, April 7.  The school is providing transportation to and from Asheville’s American Red Cross location on April 7, 14 and 22 for any students, faculty and staff interested in donating platelets. And the month will conclude with an opportunity for on-campus whole blood donations on April 28.

Platelets are cells in the blood that help control bleeding, and they are particularly vital for chemotherapy and radiation patients, open heart surgeries, burn and trauma patients and bone marrow transplants. Although the process for platelet donation is similar to that for donating whole blood, platelet donation allows donors to provide in one donation what would normally be collected from five whole blood donations. And many platelet donors are able to give enough platelets to support up to three patient transfusions.

Montreat College’s involvement in platelet donation was initiated by Montreat senior Grant Geurink, and he is organizing the drive in conjunction with fellow student Madison Maratta, Director of Service Lyndsey Wall and Director of Health Services Grace Miller. The organizers are hoping to have five new donors for each trip into Asheville. And according to Miller, the platelet drive initiative is part of a larger desire for Montreat College to actually be service-driven, not just seem service driven. “This is a mission,” she says. “We want to have an impact.  And we want people to see that Montreat is different.”

Transportation from Montreat’s campus to the American Red Cross in Asheville will depart at 2pm on April 7 and 14, and at 1:30pm on April 22.  Those interested in donating can contact Grant Geurink at or Madison Maratta at For more information on platelet donation, please visit