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The demand for organ donation has increased tremendously and the number of potential donors are unable to keep up, resulting in a critical organ donation shortage. Organ donation is when one’s healthy organs are removed and placed into another person’s body. A person may  need an organ donation because their organ is not functioning properly or failing. Many organs can be donated such as the eyes, skin, heart, liver, kidney, lungs, bone, bone marrow and so much more. Organ donation can originate from a live or cadaver donor. People have different viewpoints of organ donation based on several factors. Factors such as cultural and peer values, parent’s influences, religious beliefs, the process of registering as a donor and an overall lack of awareness were cited in past studies (Liu et al. 2015; Metin et al. 2014). This research project will undergo an in-depth evaluation on college students and their knowledge and willingness to become an organ donor.
Statement of the Problem
Today, there has been an increase in medical achievements and survival rates of organ recipients. Despite this, not enough people are not signing up to become registered organ donors. Organ donation offers the hope to cure diseases for many patients around the globe. It improves the recipient’s quality of life, increases life expectancy and has long been hailed as a charitable and unselfish gift of life. In 2014 alone, over 100,000 were performed worldwide with kidney transplants accounting for almost a third of transplants followed by the liver, heart, lungs, and the pancreas. However, in that same year, almost a fifth of potential organ recipients in the UK died waiting, due to their condition deteriorating and the shortage of organ donors (Findlater and Thomson 2015). There is a great need to figure out how to match the supply of organ donation with the demand. The overall direction of this research project is to analyze the current position of college students concerning organ donation to create a framework to increase awareness and their willingness to be a registered organ donor.
Research Objectives
This study has the following objectives:

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To determine and assess the current attitudes and beliefs of organ donation among college students 
To determine and understand the key factors that college students consider when agreeing or refusing to be an organ donor
To outline a basic framework of the results to use a foundation for further problem-solving of the registered organ donor shortage.

The results of this study will be a great benefit for organ donation awareness groups especially ones on college campuses, in their process of developing better strategies to increase awareness on organ donation.
Research Questions 
There needs to be a better understanding of the key factors relating to college students’ inclination to become an organ donor and how to increase their knowledge on organ donation and in the long run, the number of registered organ donors available.
The following research questions will need to be addressed in this study:

What percentage of college students at the University of Hawaii at Hilo are already a registered organ donor?
What are the factors that college students consider for agreeing or refusing to be an organ donor?
Is there a correlation between any of the various factors and one’s willingness to donate their organs?
Does knowing someone who has donated/received an organ have an affect on one’s decision to register as an organ donor?

Significance of the Study
The significance of this study is to attain data on organ donation which may eventually be utilized to introduce a comprehensive approach to enhance awareness and participation in the organ donor registry among college students. Studies of the viewpoints of a particular population on organ donation have been conducted but very few have chosen to study the demographic of college students. Additionally the ones done already on college students were in dense, city populations of various countries. This study will take place in Hilo, Hawaii, a rural setting.
Literature Review
The population demographic in Hilo, Hawaii, where the proposed research study will be conducted will vary largely in comparison to the population demographics of past studies. Past literature reviewed studies have employed their research in countries such as China, Australia, and Turkey. Various factors were determined at the end of past studies such as traditional culture, peer values, religion, parental influences, the process of registering as a donor and one’s overall lack of awareness (Liu et al. 2015; Metin et al. 2014). However in one of those studies, only a select amount of 9 college students ages 21-22 were interviewed (Liu et al. 2015), while in another study, high school students were the main focus (Metin et al. 2014). A weakness in past literature are its lacking justification of its data due to its use of such a small pool of candidates. A much bigger pool of data is needed, which will be used in this research study. An aspect that is missing from previous studies are comprehensive data on college students in the United States, particularly in a rural setting such as Hilo, Hawaii. Additionally, there is a literature gap in how knowing this information will be used to create a framework the awareness groups can use to reach their own goals of increasing organ donor registry numbers. Previous studies have stated their findings but have not showed how it could be used in solving the problem of the shortage of organ donors.
The primary research method for this study is a literature review and a questionnaire consisting of closed and open-ended questions. First, past studies on organ donation will be reviewed, specifically on the views of college students, if any. Second, various factors that affect a college student’s willingness to register as an organ donor will be identified and classified. Next, a questionnaire will be conducted to between 50-100 college students attending the University of Hawaii at Hilo during the Spring 2018 term. It will examine possible aspects such as the basic demographic information of the participants including their age, gender, religion, class standing and major. Additionally, one’s level of knowledge regarding organ donation and whether one is an organ donor will be investigated. A questionnaire would be the best method in inquiring information for this study due to plethora of potential factors that may be answered by the participants. It is possible for others to replicate this methodology to suit the population demographic in their area. With the data collected from the questionnaire, statistics and trends/correlations from various opinions can be uncovered and analyzed. After analyzing all of the collected data, a suitable plan can be put together in regards to the results and thus solutions to increase awareness and the percentage of registered college student donors can be explored in the long run.