Protect Life Club focused on its mission at UDM

Detroit Mercy is home to countless student organizations, and they range in focus from shared interest in a hobby to hosting discussions of important topics. One such organization on campus is the Protect Life Club. The mission of the organization is to spark conversations, share information and educate students on pro-life topics, especially abortion.

To accomplish this goal, the club coordinates several types of initiatives and events: campus outreach, fundraisers for pregnancy centers, various social events and an annual trip to the March for Life.

Campus outreach is the club’s most common method. Setting up a table in the library or in the stairway up to Titan Dining Room, members offer their time to passing students to discuss their thoughts on abortion.

“The goal here is positive change in the mindsets of the attendees towards valuing life at every stage,” said John Gazdecki, third-year electrical engineering major and club president. “I have a desire to help people in need and also want to educate others on the realities surrounding this issue.”

The club also holds fundraisers for local pregnancy centers, including their annual baby product drive. Bins are placed in several buildings throughout campus, encouraging students to participate by donating diapers, clothing, bottles and other items for mothers in need.

It is no secret that the topics the club focuses on have been hot-button issues for decades in political conversations. Abortion is a very divisive issue, and widely discussed, especially considering Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the Supreme Court case that overruled Roe v. Wade, the 1973 case that legalized abortion.

Since this victory for the pro-life movement, this mission has developed, but has not changed. As a campus organization, the Protect Life Club’s mission remains the same.

“We live in a time where dialogue is underappreciated and undertaught,” Gazdecki said. “This club helps its members and outreach attendees to have calm, respectful and meaningful discussions on sensitive topics.”

Abortion is a topic that sparks a lot of debate on college campuses and can lead to rather heated arguments, often leading to the spread of misinformation.

“Young people are the target of a large information war regarding abortion,” said Kellan Winslow, a first-year electrical engineering major and club member. “Our goal is to have honest conversations and get people independently thinking.”

As a Catholic university, UDM is built on a pro-life foundation.

“Being a Catholic university, I think it is important to have the opportunity to join a group in standing up for innocent lives being taken,” said Hannah Hayes, a second-year nursing major and club member.

Members of the Protect Life Club cite their Christian faith as what drives them in their involvement.

“I have been raised in my faith to stand up for the right to life and the sanctity of all human life…and the desire to stand up for all people,” Winslow said.

Those involved in the Protect Life Club know that these topics aren’t easy to talk about, but they believe they must be.

“These babies can’t stand up for themselves, so someone needs to be their voice,” Hayes said. “Each life is a gift from God and each life was created with a plan and purpose from God.”

The club meets on Tuesdays and students from all backgrounds and faiths are encouraged to learn more and get involved by contacting Gazdecki at