Inside Look with SODA Chapter President, Caleb Sutton
Updated: Nov 3, 2020
Shari Deeken, Editorial Consultant
Meet Caleb Sutton, a pre-med junior at Indiana University in Bloomington (IU), who is studying Biology while minoring in Chemistry. Having learned about SODA through Indiana Donor Network’s Facebook Page, Sutton became both the co-founder and president of the SODA Chapter at IU’s campus.
Caleb has mapped out his future profession as a physician and specifically intends to be a lung transplant surgeon someday.
“My participation in SODA is contributing to my future career as a transplant surgeon in many ways,” Caleb said recently. “To understand how valuable and important organ donation is, [one only has] to simply understand the reality about organ donation and the giving of a second chance at life that people can have.”
Caleb said that he has been passionate about organ donation since his mother was diagnosed with pulmonary fibrosis, an incurable lung disease.
“Transplant is the only option,” Caleb explained. “As I went to doctors’ appointments and was exposed to the whole system of organ donation, I soon saw the need to improve and educate people about it.”
Caleb said that he particularly enjoys talking to someone who is not registered as an organ donor and then giving them the ‘how’ and ‘why’ about organ donation, perhaps changing their perspective. He is often surprised by the number of people who are not registered as organ donors.
“People tend to be misinformed,” he said, continuing, “This is the purpose of SODA and why I enjoy this club so much.”
Because SODA is new on IU’s campus, Caleb finds his most challenging role is starting up the chapter; thus, “Everything we do, we are doing for the first time.”
Caleb’s vision for SODA at IU is to be a campus organization that grows and evolves into something that can affect the community of Bloomington, not just on his university’s campus.
“It is such a rewarding group to be a part of,” Caleb concluded, “Because even if you only reach out to one person, then that one person could have the potential to save a life.”
In Spring 2019, SODA’s 15+ chapters educated more than 1,000 students and registered more than 350 students. To get involved with SODA, visit https://www.sodanational.org/get-involved.