April blood drive comes up short

WCU students give blood on Wednesday, April 25.
Photo by Ben Haines

The American Red Cross held a blood drive April 24-25 at Western Carolina University but the donor turnout was significantly below the goal.

The Red Cross aimed to collect 135 units of blood on Tuesday and 130 on Wednesday but ended up with 76 and 82, respectively. It was the second of two multi-day blood drives that the Red Cross holds at WCU every semester in the A.K. Hinds University Center grand room.

Blood drives in April tend to draw the fewest WCU students, according to Eva Hyatt, team supervisor for the American Red Cross. “The end of the school year is right around the corner, so we don’t get as many students in here,” she said.

The previous multi-day blood drive that ran February 14-16 also failed to meet the Red Cross quota. The goal was to collect 100 units on each day but the final tally was 77 on the first day, 90 on the second and 97 on the third.

Blood donors must wait eight weeks before they can safely donate again and the Red Cross schedules blood drives at WCU accordingly.

Two additional, single-day blood drives earlier this semester were special occasions. The first took place on January 23 to coincide with the WCU stage and radio production of Bram Stoker’s Dracula. The second occurred March 27 as part of the Chancellor’s Installation Week events.

Both single-day blood drives took place in the UC multipurpose room and exceeded their comparatively modest goals. The January drive was meant to collect 35 units but it ended up with 44 in total. The March drive had a goal of 51 and yielded 60.

The Red Cross is planning another blood drive at WCU in June. The exact date has not been finalized but Hyatt hopes to hold it in the Liston B. Ramsey Regional Activity Center.


Related story: One-day blood drive goes beyond goal