By Laura Fenton
In the span of two days last fall, the University of Memphis and Lambda Chi Alpha
fraternity partnered to collect more than 350 units of blood at the Halloween-themed
Lifeblood blood drive on campus. That amount usually aids more than 1,050 people.
“We didn’t realize how much impact the blood drive would have or how much campus would
be able to help Lifeblood,” said Dixon Williams, U of M junior and one of the blood
drive coordinators. “And, hopefully, that amount will keep growing.”
For the U of M and Lambda Chi Alpha’s overwhelming support, Lifeblood named the U
of M the 2012 “Newcomer of the Year” at the Lifeblood fourth annual awards luncheon
in early February. Organizations, corporations and individuals were honored for their
volunteer efforts in 2012 to support blood donations in the community.
U of M Lambda Chi Alpha members Alex Galbraith, Tremaine McKinley and Williams attended
the event to accept the award on the University’s behalf. The trio serves as student
blood drive coordinators for the fraternity.
“Our volunteers are vital to ensuring a stable blood supply is available at all times
for trauma centers, hospitals and individuals in need," said Susan Berry-Buckley,
Lifeblood CEO. “And so we celebrate them for their efforts to support Lifeblood and
their fellow community members.”
(Left to right) Dixon Williams, Alex Galbraith and Tremaine McKinley, University of
Memphis students and blood drive coordinators with Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity, accepted
Lifeblood's “Newcomer of the Year” award on behalf of the University.
Nationally, high school and college blood drives collect about 20 percent of the millions
of donations, according to the American Red Cross. In the Mid-South, 25 percent of
blood donations collected by Lifeblood in 2012 came from colleges and universities.
Lambda Chi Alpha intends to host one blood drive per semester. The recent St. Patrick’s
Day spring blood drive collected 358 units of blood.
“I’m pleased that we have been able to re-establish regularly scheduled campus-wide
blood drives at the U of M,” said Dr. Steven Petersen, associate VP for Student Affairs
and dean of students. “I applaud Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity for stepping up and serving
as the host organization for the blood drives. They have done a great job, and we
have received many positive comments both from Lifeblood and from donors about their
support of the campus blood drives.”
Lifeblood is the Memphis region’s only full-service, non-profit blood center. It is
the area’s leading provider of blood and blood components to area hospitals, supplying
more than 100,000 units for local patient transfusions each year.