The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Photo credit: Nick Shockey /
A letter from the editor
February 6, 2024

Vitalant blood bank visits City College

The Vitalant bus in front of the North Gym for the blood drive held at City College Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2020. (Jesenia Hernandez/[email protected])

City College welcomed Vitalant blood bank to campus last week for the first blood drive of the spring semester. Students and staff sat in chairs lined up across from the bloodmobiles, waiting to donate blood.

Emma Dallas, a 19-year-old kinesiology major, was one student who took part in the blood drive.

“I’ve always wanted to [donate blood], and when I first came here I didn’t know they did this kind of stuff,” said Dallas. “I’ve been wanting to do it since then, and now I’ve finally had the time.”

Every eight weeks Vitalant, formerly Blood Source blood bank, visits City College to get blood donations from students and staff. 

Vitalant is a non-profit foundation that visits many different colleges in the Sacramento region, according to Toccara Coats, a phlebotomist working at the blood drive. They took donations from 10 a.m.–4 p.m. on Jan. 27 and 28, and the bloodmobiles were located in between the City Cafe and the SCC College Store.

Blood banks take one pint of blood from each donor, according to Coats. If a donor wishes to donate more, they must return eight weeks after their first donation. 

“We come every eight weeks because we need to keep the blood supply up,” said Coats, “But also to get other people who don’t know about us, and other people in the community active, and donate some blood.”

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Coats said that blood donors should arrive hydrated and well-fed before donating blood.

“If you are vegetarian, make sure you eat beans and green leafy vegetables,” Coats said.  “If you’re not a vegetarian, eat your red meat, but everyone should be eating vegetables and lentils as well.”

Group of students wait to give blood during the Vitalant blood drive held at City College Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2020. (Jesenia Hernandez/[email protected])

Regardless of diet, blood banks welcome all blood types. The Vitalant website offers some basic donor requirements and eligibility, including age, weight limit, health conditions, and tattoos. As for first-time blood donors, the bloodmobiles provide services for testing blood type to make sure donors qualify to make the donation.

Jennifer Chen, a 21-year-old history major, said that she has donated at least five times to blood banks on and off-campus, and would like to donate blood again. Chen said she ultimately decided to donate to help her friend Dallas cross it off her bucket list, and for the free socks given to those who made blood donations.

Donating one pint of blood can end up saving three lives, according to the Vitalant website. The bloodmobiles drive to many locations from Sacramento, all the way to South Lake Tahoe.

The next blood drive is scheduled for April 1 and 2.

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