It's On! Campus Challenge: The Art Institute of Pittsburgh Leads in Organ Donor Recruitment

PITTSBURGH, May 5 /PRNewswire/ -- A special event featuring a life-size version of a favorite surgical board game and social media are credited with motivating over 130 students at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh to sign up for the It's On! Campus Challenge, a campaign for organ and tissue donation awareness held during April, National Donate Life Month.

The friendly competition to see which Pennsylvania colleges and universities could register the most new organ donors highlighted an inexpensive, efficient way for students to help others. A total of 1,670 students from 24 colleges and universities registered for the Challenge during the semester, a drastic increase from the 245 students who entered last year's challenge.

"It was awesome being a part of this," says Amelia Rising, who was the student coordinator for the It's On! Campus Challenge at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. "When I started, I was honestly afraid to become an organ donor, but as I heard stories and the statistics I decided I better step up and register. It was definitely an eye opener, and I will continue to advocate for this with my family and friends."

Rising is a member of the Art Institute's Ad Club and Student Council which worked together to organize activities to raise awareness of the importance of organ and tissue donation and provide opportunities for students to register online. The game night, which also featured heart-shaped and gingerbread man cookies that could be decorated, and a candy basket raffle for registrants, resulted in 35 new registrants in one night. Another event featuring the opportunity to play Wii games and eat waffles provided opportunities for volunteers to answer questions about organ and tissue donation.

Rising says social media was extremely helpful in getting the word out. She created a Facebook page to keep fans appraised of the Art Institute's standing. She also engaged two area women with large Pittsburgh-based Twitter followings to "tweet" information about organ donation and the Art Institute's participation in the campus challenge.

To learn more about becoming an organ and tissue donor, please visit because Life Begins with You.

About CORE

CORE, Center for Organ Recovery and Education, is a regional not-for-profit agency that is the primary call center and intermediary for the organ recovery and allocation process that serves 155 hospitals and more than six million people in western Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Chemung County in New York. CORE has helped to pioneer organ procurement allocation and recovery for this region since it was founded in 1977 as the Pittsburgh Transplant Foundation. For more information visit

About Gift of Life Donor Program

Since 1974, Gift of Life Donor Program has served as the link between donors and patients awaiting life-saving transplants in the eastern half of Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey and Delaware. In that tenure, Gift of Life has coordinated more than 29,000 life-saving organ transplants and hundreds of thousand tissue transplants. For more information, visit

Life Begins with You Campaign

The Life Begins with You campaign is a collaborative initiative between Gift of Life Donor Program (GOL), the Center for Organ & Recovery Education (CORE) – the two organ procurement organizations serving Pennsylvania – and the Pennsylvania Departments of Health and Transportation. It is funded by state residents through voluntary contributions included with driver's license renewals, vehicle registrations and state income tax filings. All contributions are used by the Governor Robert P. Casey Memorial Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness Trust Fund to educate residents, build awareness about the importance of organ and tissue donation, and increase the number of people who sign up to become donors on their driver's license, learner's permit or state identification card.

One Extraordinary Way to Say Love Life.

When you choose to become an organ and tissue donor, you have the power to give the most precious gift – life. Join the nearly four million Pennsylvanians who have said "yes" to organ and tissue donation by adding the donor designation to your driver's license, learner's permit or state identification card. Sign up to be an organ and tissue donor today by visiting because Life Begins with You.