UK Happenings

Roll Up Your Sleeve for Kentucky Blood Drive

photo of someone's arm while giving blood

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 24, 2020)  With only one day left in this year’s Big Blue Slam blood drive competition, Florida has built its margin over Kentucky, leading the 12th annual event 991-898. Kentucky Blood Center saw 227 donors roll up their sleeves for the event on Thursday, while 281 Gator fans donated. 

The competition runs through Friday, Jan. 24, at UK campus locations (see schedule below) and all Kentucky Blood Center (KBC) donor centers and blood drives. Big Blue Slam comes at a critical time for the nonprofit blood center as sickness and weather have caused blood drive cancelations and left the blood supply suffering.

As a thank you for saving a life, Kentucky donors will receive a throwback Big Blue Slam T-shirt 

“We really want to encourage Kentucky fans to show our Wildcat spirit over the last two days of Big Blue Slam,” said Martha Osborne, vice president of marketing for KBC. “Our loyal donors know the impact their donations make on the communities we serve, and we would also love to see some Kentucky fans try blood donation for the first time as we close out Slam.”

UK students, faculty, staff and fans can donate at the following campus locations the rest of this week:

  • Gatton Student Center: 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Friday (Ballroom)
  • UK Medical Center (Bloodmobile on Rose St.): 7 a.m.–3 p.m. Friday
  • William T. Young Library: 11 a.m.–4 p.m. Friday

Donors may give at any KBC mobile blood drive or donor center. KBC donor centers, which will be open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday during Slam week, are listed below:

Andover Donor Center 3130 Maple Leaf Drive, Lexington

Beaumont Donor Center 3121 Beaumont Centre Circle, Lexington

Hillview Donor Center 5406 Antle Drive, Louisville

Middletown Donor Center 12905 Shelbyville Road, Louisville 

Pikeville Donor Center 472 S. Mayo Trail, Pikeville

Somerset Donor Center 10 Stonegate Centre (Stoplight 16A), Somerset

Kentucky won the competition in 2019 and took a 6-5 lead in the series between KBC and LifeSouth Community Blood Centers in Gainesville. Big Blue Slam was created to encourage blood donation during the winter months, when weather and illness can hamper collections.

Blood donors must be at least 17 years old (16 with parental consent), weigh at least 110 pounds, be in general good health, show a photo I.D. and meet additional requirements. Sixteen-year-old donors must have a signed parental permission slip, which can be found at

Walk-ins are welcome. To schedule a donation or find other donation locations, visit or call 800-775-2522.

Celebrating more than 50 years of saving lives in Kentucky, KBC is the largest independent, full-service, nonprofit blood center in Kentucky. Licensed by the FDA, KBC’s sole purpose is to collect, process and distribute blood for patients in Kentucky. KBC provides services in 90 Kentucky counties and has donor centers in Lexington, Louisville, Pikeville and Somerset.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.