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SXU to Host Scholarly Conversations Talk on Organ Donation


Saint Xavier University's (SXU) School of Nursing and Health Sciences (SONHS), Alumni Relations and the Alpha Omicron Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau will host "Scholarly Conversations: Take the Time to Talk – The Organ and Tissue Donation Process" on Wednesday, March 10 at 6 p.m. The event will feature a panel discussion on organ and tissue donation and the gift of communicating one's decision to donate.

The event will be moderated by SXU communication professor Cynthia Grobmeier, president of the Maddog Strong Foundation and organ donation awareness advocate. Panelists include Harry Wilkins, M.D., president and CEO of Gift of Hope Organ & Tissue Donor Network; Robert Horsey, clinical coordinator of Indiana Donor Network; Monica Fox, kidney recipient and director of outreach and government relations at National Kidney Foundation of Illinois; and Alicia Guerrero, donor mother whose daughter, Briana Valle, saved and changed lives through her selfless gift of donation.

When Grobmeier lost her daughter, Maddie Grobmeier, to an acute asthma attack in 2019, the family knew that Maddie wanted to be a donor should the unthinkable happen. As a donor, Maddie was a true hero and saved three lives, gave sight to two people and changed the lives of countless others through her tissue donations. The Maddog Strong Foundation helped to coordinate the panel of speakers for this event along with SXU's Alpha Omicron Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau, which was first established in 1965.

The goal of the event is to help educate nurses, nursing students and others with an interest in the medical field about organ and tissue donation. In the United States, there are currently 110,000 people waiting for a life-saving organ transplant, and the need for life-saving transplants is disproportionately high in communities of color. Nearly 20 people die each day waiting for a transplant, and someone is added to the waiting list every 10 minutes. Over 40% of people are not registered to be donors, and the event seeks to educate others about understanding the responsibility and selflessness of choosing to become a donor.

"While anyone interested in learning more about organ and tissue donation would benefit from the knowledge and experience of this incredible panel of experts, certainly those working in the medical field and students would benefit tremendously from the opportunity to not only learn about the clinical aspects of donation, but to hear the perspectives of a transplant recipient and a donor family, which are so important to learning how to navigate this emotional process," said Grobmeier.

Admission for the event is free and registration is required. Nurses who participate in the virtual presentation are eligible for one contact hour. To register for the event, visit Zoom. To learn more about the event or for questions, contact Jeanmarie Gainer, director of Alumni Relations, at gainerFREESXU.