Auxiliary Services News

August 15, 2016

Parking control assistant at standing on top floor of Union DeckWhat’s most important to know about campus parking

UNC Charlotte parking permits are required to park anytime the University is open and will be enforced on the first day of class. If you have not already done so, purchasing online is the easiest way to get your permit. We’ll have it waiting for you in an express pick-up line!

  • If you do not have a permit, you must pay to park in a Visitor parking area. If you only need to park for an hour or two, Union, Cone, East 1, South Village, or CRI decks or Lot 4 pay-by-space have designated short-term visitor parking.Visitor parking map
  • You may buy a temporary permit from for $4.00/day that will allow you park in North Deck for up to four days, Monday, Aug. 22 – Thursday, Aug. 25. Details below.
  • Temporary permits are also available for purchase in person from Parking and Transportation Services. Temporary permits are not valid in visitor parking areas and do not work in gated decks or lots. Price for these permits is $6.00/day.
  • Peak parking demand will occur Monday – Thursday, 9:00 AM. – 2:00 PM (based on class schedule).
  • The Parking and Transportation Services Call Center is open weekdays, 5:00 AM Monday continuously through 10:00 PM Friday to answer any parking or transportation related questions or concerns: 704-687-0161. 
  • If you need to park for short-term loading/unloading, call 704-687-0161 for permission and direction.
  • Gated lots and decks will be restricted to those with gate access from 5:00 AM Monday continuously through 10:00 PM on Friday evening, except during holidays when the University is closed. 
  • Single and multi-space meters are enforced 24 hours per day, seven days per week, except during holidays when the University is closed.

Photo of clickandpark mobile web page to buy temporary permit onlineDiscounted temporary permits available 

  • PaTS is offering $4.00 temporary permits online for parking in North Deck for the first four (4) days of class (Monday, Aug. 22 – Thursday, Aug. 25).
  • This option gives a $6.00 savings over the Visitor parking day rate and frees Visitor decks/lots for those who need short-term parking. 
  • The temporary North Deck parking permit can be purchased at:; choose the “Fall Rush” permit option for the needed dates. Print the permit and display on your vehicle’s dash while parked in North Deck. 
  • An express shuttle will be provided between North Deck and the Student Union from 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM, Aug. 22-25.
  • The campus Green Line shuttle also serves North Deck from 7:00 AM until 9:30 PM Monday-Friday. SafeRide evening transportation serves all of campus from 6:00 PM until 2:00 AM seven days a week.
  • Program expires on Thursday, Aug. 25 at 11:59 PM. Vehicles without the proper Resident, Commuter, or Faculty/Staff permit are subject to citations after this time.

"Motorcycle/moped parking only" sign with motorcycle parked in frontNew policies for motorcycles and mopeds

  • The State of North Carolina now requires mopeds to be registered with the state (§ 20-53.4). As a result, UNC Charlotte has instituted a policy that requires mopeds to be treated like motorcycles in relation to parking policies and procedures and has added designated motorcycle/moped parking areas in lots across campus.
  • Mopeds are now required to have a UNC Charlotte digital parking permit, as is required for motorcycles.
  • MOPEDS ARE NO LONGER PERMITTED TO DRIVE ON SIDEWALKS OR PARK IN ANY AREA OTHER THAN A PROPER PARKING SPACE. Mopeds may not park in bike racks. Failure to follow policy may result in fines and/or immobilization/impound.
  • Detailed motorcycle/moped policies, permit options, and a list of designated motorcycle/moped locations is available on the PaTS website.
  • To register a moped with the State of North Carolina, please see the NCDOT website.

Photo of Greek Village where mobile payment for visitor parking now availableIntroducing mobile payment for some Visitor Parking areas

  • PaTS is pleased to introduce a mobile payment app that allows visitors to pay for parking, extend a metered parking time, receive time expiration alerts, and view receipts.  
  • The Parkmobile payment app is a free download available at Android and iOS app stores.  
  • Mobile payment has been established in the following locations:
    • Lot 4 
    • Lot 28
    • Lot 30
    • Meters in Robinson Hall Lot
    • Meters in the SAC Handicap Lot
    • Meters in Lot 13
    • Meters in Lot 16
    • Meters in Lot 20
    • Meters in Lot 21
    • Greek Village (any unrestricted space in lot)
    • Campus Parking Map
  • When using mobile payment, there is no need to use the parking meter in the lot.
  • For more information see
  • The mobile payment option will be added to additional parking areas across campus as the program grows. It is not currently available for Visitor parking in any of the decks. 

Photo of student union with "Student Permit Pick up" signStudent permit purchase and pick-up

Student permit purchase and pick-up will be at the Student Union first floor Art Gallery (#69 on campus map) during the following dates/times: 

  • Thursday Aug. 18, 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM 

  • Friday Aug. 19, 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Saturday Aug. 20, 11:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Sunday Aug. 21, 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM
  • Monday Aug. 22, 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Tuesday Aug. 23, 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Wednesday Aug. 24, 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Thursday Aug. 25, 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Photo of Commuter parking permit over permit policy brochureAdditional Permit Info

  • A limited number of discount remote parking permits are still available to commuters for Lot 6A (corner of Cameron Blvd. and John Kirk Road, served by the campus shuttle). 
  • Permit hangtags have a Radio Frequency ID (RFID) chip that will open gated areas appropriate for your permit type. 
  • You may add additional vehicles to a permit at no charge but the vehicles must be registered in the name of permit holder, their spouse, or a parent/guardian.  
  • Permits are to be displayed from the rearview mirror or on the driver’s side dash in a PaTS-approved clear pouch. The entire permit must be visible. Dash pouches are available from the PaTS office at no charge.

Photo of North DeckParking Tips

  • Typically, parking demand is exceptionally high during the first two weeks of Fall semester, particularly at Union Deck. Plan to either arrive before 8:00 AM or park in a lot toward the margins of campus and utilize the shuttle in to the center of campus.
  • Parking is expected to be especially tight on Monday, Aug. 22 due to New Student Convocation and Tuesday, Aug. 23 due to the first full day of classes.
  • Decks and lots closest to the center of campus fill quickly and early. Union Deck, East Deck 2, West Deck, and the lots closest to those decks, are often at peak capacity by 8:45 AM. 
  • Be prepared. Have a plan in mind for alterative parking if your first preference is full when you arrive. Parking map.
  • Don’t circle a full lot or deck! That only adds to traffic congestion in or near parking decks and lots. Move to a lower-demand area such as North Deck, CRI Deck or Lot 6 (on Cameron near Campus Edge apartments). More detailed information on lot utilization is on our website.  There are shuttle stops nearby for transportation to the center of campus if you don’t wish to walk.
  • By the third week of classes, parking demand eases.

Photo of pedestrian and vehicular traffic on Craver Rd.Traffic Tips

  • Peak traffic times are 7:45 AM – 9:15 AM and 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM.
  • All shuttles from off-campus housing complexes must load and unload passengers at the bus loop of East Deck 2 only, entering at the Main Entrance and exiting via Van Landingham Road. Students utilizing private shuttle services are advised to leave early due to campus congestion during the first two weeks of classes.
  • If leaving campus between 5:00 and 6:00 PM, avoid exiting to John Kirk Drive by way of Van Landingham Road near Fretwell. Try using Mary Alexander Road to Mallard Creek Church Road or the bottom level of East Deck 2 that exits to Rt. 49 South (University City Blvd). 
  • If arriving on campus between 5:00 and 6:00 PM, avoid the John Kirk Drive Entrance at Van Landingham Road (near the Circle K). Instead, enter campus by using Cameron Blvd., the Front Entrance, Mary Alexander Road, or the bottom level of East Deck 2 from 49 South (University City Blvd). 
  • Follow @unccparking on Twitter. PaTS uses Twitter to inform of detours, delays, and other relevant information. For those who don’t use Twitter, the same information is fed directly to the PaTS website home page.

Photo of Red Line shuttle at Craver and Mary Alexander stopCampus Shuttle Service

  • Full service begins Monday, Aug. 22. Campus Shuttle stop lists and route maps are available online. This service is fare-free to all UNC Charlotte students, faculty/staff and visitors.
  • Some changes have been made to campus shuttle routes that should yield major improvement in service. SafeRide vans will be running modified Red and Green Line routes in the evening to make evening safety transportation much more efficient and extend shuttle service until 2:00 AM with weekend evening service, too! See for more information. 
  • Real-time campus shuttle and SafeRide Evening Safety transportation tracking and arrival information is available via smartphone or website with the UNCC NextRide app (FREE at Android and iOS app stores) or

Please remember:

  • Parking for individuals with mobility impairments is available on campus ONLY to those who have a DMV-issued disability placard and a valid UNC Charlotte Parking Permit registered to them.
  • SafeRide provides disability transport throughout the inner core of campus for those with mobility impairments who have registered for the service, Monday – Friday, 7:30 AM – 5:30 PM. Services require registration through the Office of Disability Services and completion of a Disability Medical Verification Request form. SafeRide is also available to those who need assistance on a temporary basis (such as recent surgery, lower limb injuries, visual impairments, or chronic diseases that impact stamina). This is also arranged through the Office of Disability Services, Fretwell 230 (704-687-4355). After completion of the required form, Disability Services will verify and send email confirmation of eligibility (usually processed within 24 hours or less).
  • SafeRide Evening Safety Transport makes getting around campus safer, faster, and easier after dark. Service runs seven days a week, 6:00 PM – 2:00 AM, picking up those waiting at marked stops on a continuous looping route. Vehicles keep moving and do not arrive or depart at set times. Details regarding SafeRide Evening Safety Transport, including a list of designated stops and route map are available on our website. SafeRide shuttle tracking and arrival information is available via smartphone or website with the UNCC NextRide app or
  • Back to top


A comprehensive guide to “Everything You Need to Know About Parking and Transportation.”

For specific inquiries and concerns, the PaTS call center is available 24 hours on weekdays, 5:00 AM Monday through 10:00 PM Friday at 704-687-0161, or utilize the contact form on the Parking and Transportation Services website or We're also on Twitter @unccparking.

June 7, 2016

Parking Permits for 2016-17 are available for online purchase now. The deadline for students to have permits mailed to them is 11:59 PM Wednesday, Aug. 3. 

PaTS strongly recommends early permit purchase. Putting off buying a permit until just before classes start usually means a long wait in a very long line. 

Students who are able to buy their permit before the mailing deadline enjoy the convenience of having their permit in-hand by move-in and first day of class. But wait! There's more! Student permits ordered between June 1 and Aug. 3 will be automatically entered into a drawing. Two names will be randomly drawn; the winners will get a full refund on the permit charge! Drawing limited to registered students.

UPDATE: Congratulations to the winners of this year's free parking pass drawing, Sean Doig and Tyler Powell! Special thanks to Student Body President Fahn Darkor (pictured with PaTS Director Doug Lape) for helping us pick the winning envelopes.

Photos of Doug Lap and SGA President Fahn Darkor with winning permit envelopes

Permit info and purchase link:


June 2, 2016

photo of contactless ID card, sample front and backBusiness Services and the 49er Card Office are phasing in a contactless ID card for campus beginning June 6, 2016.

Contactless cards will be issued to all SOAR attendees and new students (first-year and transfer). They will receive an ID card similar to the existing 49er ID Card, with two enhancements:

  • Card ID Number  -  This number will no longer be the Banner 800 number, but instead an ISO number. The ISO number is a secure, unique number generated when a card is issued or reissued.  The 800 number will also be printed on the card and encoded in the magnetic stripe.

  • Contactless Chip - A chip embedded in the card allows for tapping at contactless terminals. Most residence halls and point of sale registers will be contactless-enabled by fall. Academic building door access and some other systems will accommodate contactless in the future.

Contactless ID cards will be issued the the remainder of campus throughout the fall. Later, CATS ridership privileges may be loaded on the card upon opening of the LYNX Blue Line extension.

May 17, 2016

Parking and Transportation Services will provide modified shuttle service during first and second summer sessions. Summer shuttle will be run internally by PaTS, using SafeRide Evening transportation vans. Photo of SafeRide 15-passenger van that will be used for Summer Shuttle service

Summer Shuttle service dates and times

  • Summer I: Monday May 23-Wednesday June 29; 7:00 AM-6:00 PM
  • Summer II: Tuesday July 5-Friday August 12; 7:00 AM-6:00 PM

Summer shuttle will cover the same route and stops as the Red and Green lines do during Fall and Spring semesters.* (Green Line connects South Village and North Campus to campus core; Red Line goes cross-campus, from Lot 6 at John Kirk and Cameron to East Decks, Student Union and CRI.) Summer Shuttle route and service stops. Shuttle vans will be labeled and show on the UNCCNextRide app and mobile web as Green and Red routes.

After 6:00 PM, SafeRide evening service will take over, returning to the established campus loop. 

"This is a pilot program," said Helena Connors, Transportation Manager, "in response to requests from students and the Office of Disability Services."

Doug Lape, PaTS Director, adds that operating a shuttle over the summer, "will help as we gear up for light rail in August of 2017." 

Regular campus shuttle service, operated by Charlotte Area Transit, will resume Monday, August 22.

More about Summer Shuttle


Route service may require temporary detours due to construction.








April 18, 2016

Photo of Chef Nicholas Brawner, holding the award-winning dish of Saag Panner with Carrot Chutney and Coconut Roti.Murray KY: Nicholas Brawner, Catering Chef for UNC Charlotte Center City, earned a Silver Medal in a culinary challenge held March 22, 2016 at the Southern Regional Conference of the National Association of College and University Food Services (NACUFS) at Murray State University. 

Brawner's dish was a rendition of Saag Paneer (a classic Indian dish of leafy greens and fried, fresh cheese) with Carrot Chutney and Coconut Roti (a griddle-baked bread). The recipe included black kale, edamame and red rice. It was one of six chosen from over a hundred entries to compete in the NACUFS Culinary Challenge event.

Brawner and five other chefs had 60 minutes to display culinary skill as they prepared qualifying recipes in front of American Culinary Federation-approved judges. Other chefs who competed were from Vanderbilt University, Georgia Tech, University of Georgia, Tulane University, and the University of New Mexico.  

The judges were looking at organization, technique and taste and were impressed with how Chef Nick made a flour from red rice to create the roti. If he had prepared the rice in a traditional way, the time limit would not have allowed for thorough cooking, (as some other contestants unfortunately learned).

"I am a Southern chef who grew up with fresh heritage cooking," said Brawner in his application bio. "I began cooking at an early age with a tough lady — my grandma — who worked a family farm growing up. [She] knew and understood food, and later studied and became a food chemist. This changed the way I looked at food and I credit her for the interest I have today."

This is the second year in a row that a UNC Charlotte chef has brought home silver from the annual event.

More info on the NACUFS Culinary Challenge rules


Submitted by Jody Thompson, Food Services Program Manager, UNC Charlotte Auxiliary Services

April 15, 2016

Just in time for upcoming exams, a study and office supplies vending machine has been installed on the main floor of Atkins Library. The machine offers convenience purchasing of often needed items such as pens, highlighters, flash drives and exam books. The machine accepts cash and the 49er card and is operated by Barnes and Noble at UNC Charlotte.Photo of study supplies vending machine

 Row 1    
101 Tot Stapler $4.50
103 Scotch Tape 2.50
105 Post it Flags 4.50
107 Post It Notes 4.50
109 Ruled Index Cards 1.50
111 Blank Index Cards 1.50
 Row 2    
201 Blue Bic Pen 10 Pack $3.00
203 Bic Xtra Life Pencil 10 Pack 6.00
205 4 Pack Sharpened Pencil 2.25
207 8 Pack Unsharpened Pencils 2.25
209 Pencil Sharpener 1.25
211 Black Bic Pen 10 Pack 3.00
 Row 3    
301 Travel Drive 8 GB $14.00
303 2 Pack Highlighter 3.25
304 Black Sharpie 2.50
305 Glue Stick 1.25
306 Eraser 1.50
307 Math Ruler Set 3.25
311 5 Pack Blue Exam Book 2.50
 Row 4    
401 30 pc #0.5 Lead $3.00
403 Report Cover 2.25
407 5 Pack Scantron Answer Sheets 1.50
412 30 pc #0.7 Lead 3.00
 Row 5    
501 Ear buds $12.00
503 Twin Pocket Folder 1.25
507 Filler Paper (130 Pages)  4.50
512 Ear buds 12.00


April 12, 2016
Horace Lytch from campus Mail & Packages Services reports that, as of April 10, some USPS prices were reduced. The "market dominant" products and services with price roll-backs include:
Forever stamps: 
First-Class 1 oz. stamp down 2¢ to .47
Stamped Envelopes, down 3¢ to .59
Stamped Postcards, down 1¢ to .38
Non-denominated stamps:
First-Class 2 oz. stamp; now .68
First Class 3 oz. stamp; now .89
First Class Additional; now .21
Postcard Rate now .34
International  1 oz. letter; down 5¢ to $1.15
Extra Services adjusted as follows:
Domestic Insurance; now starting at $2.10
Registered Mail, now starting at $11.70
Signature Confirmation; now $2.90
Certified Mail; now $3.30
Return Receipt; now $2.70
Remember, UNC Charlotte has a full-service postal facility on the lower level of Prospector.  Mail & Package Services also manages Union Station, on the main level of Student Union. There you can get stamps, ship packages (via USPS and UPS), get signs and banners made (graphics services list and prices) and even get your U.S. Passport prepared. Read about Union Station services.

March 29, 2016

Early spring is when parking permit rates are proposed and approved for the upcoming academic year. For the THIRD year in a row, the recommendation is that the cost of UNC Charlotte parking permits remain the same.

That's right, NO INCREASE! This is welcome news, especially to those who remember that prior to 2014-15, permit prices rose five to eight percent every year. 

The price of UNC Charlotte parking permits is determined by how much will be needed to support a ten-year financial plan that will pay for parking that accommodates enrollment. Although enrollment continues to increase, parking availability is meeting demand (recent space count data proves this) as more students avail themselves to remote parking options, taking campus- or apartment complex-provided shuttles, ride sharing, walking, and biking. As a result, there's no need to plan, build and pay for additional parking facilities at this time.

Want to know more about how permit price is determined and where the money goes? Read The Truth About UNC Charlotte Parking.

March 21, 2016

"The parking at UNCC is ridiculous," someone Tweeted just before 11 a.m., the first Monday after Spring break. It's very likely that student was looking for a space in or near Union, West or East parking decks and all were full, just like any other weekday morning when classes are most densely scheduled. The competition for close-to-class parking, made worse by those who stubbornly circle full decks and lots instead of moving on, makes her Tweet ring true.

But it doesn't have to be that way. There's plenty of parking available in other areas.

Space counts, which are taken regularly, show that UNC Charlotte has sufficient parking for visitors, faculty, staff, and students. Students are the population who most heavily use parking and for whom most of the parking is designated. 

Student parking at a glance

Bar graph showing occupied and empty parking spaces in Yellow Commuter lots, Orange Commuter/Resident lots and Blue Resident lots

Student parking by the numbers

Here are the numbers for Spring 2016, Monday - Thursday.* Italicized rows are areas that tend to fill at peak class times. Bold entries have the most parking to spare.

Student Parking Space Count, Spring 2016

 Location Total Available Unoccupied 10:00 AM Unoccupied 12:00 PM Unoccupied 2:00 PM Unoccupied 4:00 PM Unoccupied 6:00 PM
Lot 26 (at FM/Police Bldg) 86 4 8 3 32 70
North Deck 1171 730 673 697 724 785
Lot 25 (across from Witherspoon) 497 125 151 138 43 60
Lot 19 (by Union Deck) 261 0 0 4 38 49
Lot 18 (by Union Deck) 94 1 2 4 31 55
Union Deck 682 107 9 93 216 354
CRI Deck 1 1343 319 302 297 319 393
CRI Lot 2 128 0 0 4 18 107
Lot 23 (CRI by stadium) 174 0 1 2 15 65
Lot 14 (by Tennis complex) 27 3 1 0 5 10
West Deck 760 30 28 45 189 452
Lot 7A (Memorial Hall) 37 0 0 1 11 31
Lot 7 (behind Cone Deck) 123 0 2 1 2 4
Lot 101 Foundation Bldg. 60 25 33 41 39 49
South Village Deck 1101 386 377 402 457 477
Lot 8 (adjacent to South Village Deck) 238 23 33 26 57 43
Lot 8A  60 0 0 2 1 0
Lot 16 (Oak, Pine, Maple, Elm) 233 0 1 1 8 9
Lot 20 (behind Witherspoon) 105 0 0 2 0 0
Lot 21 (next to Witherspoon) 134 0 0 1 2 6
Lot 12 (NE corner Mary Alex & Cameron) 84 9 7 11 13 42
Lot 13 (Hawthorn) 140 1 4 7 8 12
Greek Village 324 123 127 139 141 158
Lot 6 (off Martin Village Rd.) 565 314 182 323 330 416
Lot 5 (Van Landingham Rd.) 582 21 50 95 209 374
Lot 5A (Van Landingham) 257 90 47 94 149 212
Lot 4A (Van Landingham at John Kirk) 128 12 17 31 56 103
East Deck 3 804 83 104 196 374 571
East Deck 2 539 6 21 41 80 157
TOTAL 9,690** 2,408 2,173 2,671 3,777 5254

Main points for Commuters:

  • Everyone wants to park as close as they can to their class and most classes are scheduled from about 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.. Therefore, more students are trying to park in the same places at the same time. Your competition is stiff.
  • Take a look at the Commuter parking areas in bold. They are generally the least crowded and every one of them has a shuttle stop.
  • For just one day, try parking in Lot 6, North Deck or South Village Deck. The Red Line runs three buses from Lot 6 through the center of campus via the Student Union and out to the CRI campus Monday through Thursday (two buses on Friday). You can catch the Green Line from North Deck and both the Yellow and Green Lines from South Village Deck.
  • Download the UNCCNextRide app or access the NextRide mobile web site you view where the shuttle is and when it will get to your stop. 
  • It feels counterintuitive to park farther away from where you're going but just try it ONCE. You will likely find it doesn't take much longer and that it's less stressful to easily find parking in a lower-demand area and take the shuttle or walk to class. Once you've tried an alternative parking area, it won't feel as annoying to park there on days when your preferred parking is full.
  • There's NO REASON to park illegally in a full lot or deck and risk getting a citation and there's NO REASON to circle a deck until you miss class.

Here's your incentive to try parking at one of the least-used areas

The first ten permit-holding Commuters who park in one of the bold areas and Tweet a selfie of their car parked there, mention @unccparking and/or use hashtag #parkedfar, will get a deck voucher for one day of free visitor parking at a Visitor deck. (Visitor deck areas are at Cone, East 1, Union, CRI 1 and South Village). That might be really nice to have for that day when you're running late.

*Counts taken over a two week period of normal class schedule (no holiday/break).

** Student parking space total. Does not include Faculty/Staff gated access, reserved, ADA/van accessible/handicapped, motorcycle, metered, visitor or discount remote parking. (Campus total 13,970.)

Learn more: The Truth About UNC Charlotte Parking

Questions? Email or Tweet @unccparking or call 704-687-0161. The PaTS Call Center line is open 24/5 weekdays, 5 a.m. Monday through 10 p.m. Friday.


January 19, 2016

UNC Charlotte students, community make lifesaving impact at seventh annual blood drive

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — University of North Carolina at Charlotte blood drive organizers are aiming for a new record this year: 1,000 pints of blood collected at the annual 49ers4Life  blood drive on Tuesday, Jan. 26. Previous blood drives have come close but never surpassed the 1,000-pint finish line; last year’s drive yielded about 800 pints. This year, organizers are hoping that students, alumni and community members respond to the call for blood donors by rolling up a sleeve and donating. 

“Winter is one of the toughest times for the Red Cross to collect enough blood to meet patient needs,” said Ryan Corcoran, donor recruitment director for the Red Cross. “When the UNC Charlotte community comes together for this drive, they can help boost the blood supply – and ultimately offer hope to patients in need of blood transfusions.” The American Red Cross has an urgent need for blood and platelet donations to prevent a shortage this winter. Busy holiday schedules in November and December contributed to about 1,700 fewer blood drives held across the country compared to the two previous months, which has resulted in about 50,000 fewer donations and reduced the blood supply. 

Donors can help mitigate this shortfall at the blood drive on Tuesday, Jan. 26 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. at UNC Charlotte’s Barnhart Student Activity Center, 9201 University City Blvd. 

Those who come out to donate blood will receive a specially designed “I Bleed 49ers Green” T-shirt, while supplies last, and be entered to win additional prizes like spirit gear from Barnes & Noble at UNC Charlotte bookstore. 

Since 2010, the college has hosted the drive to help increase blood donations during the challenging winter season. Seasonal illnesses, like the flu, can cause some donors to become temporarily ineligible to donate, and winter weather can lead to canceled blood drives. Despite these challenges, patients still depend on lifesaving donations every day. 

Photo of Shamari Inuwa, UNCC alumna who depends on blood donors.Shamari Inuwa is one of those patients. Shamari, a recent UNC Charlotte graduate, was born with sickle cell disease, an inherited red blood cell disorder. Red blood cells carry oxygen to all parts of the body. People with sickle cell disease have abnormally shaped red blood cells, and the condition can cause anemia, tissue and organ damage, strokes and pain. 

In high school, Shamari began experiencing numbness in her hands and feet, sometimes just for a few seconds. But over time, the loss of feeling in her hands and feet increased in frequency and duration. In the most severe episode, she stood up after class and felt half her body go numb. Extreme pain brought her to the emergency room, and doctors discovered that she was experiencing mini-strokes. Shamari needed a blood transfusion immediately.

“That initial transfusion saved my life,” she said. Shamari began receiving transfusions about once per month to reduce the risk of further mini-strokes, called transient ischemic attacks. She has continued the treatment over eight years—for a total of nearly 100 blood transfusions. “The transfusions have enabled me to have a normal life and successfully complete college, despite my illness,” she said. 

Shamari, who graduated with a degree in biology, hopes to use her education and personal experience to help others in the healthcare field. She’s an advocate for sickle cell disease research, and hopes to work toward more treatment options for the disease that affects as many as 100,000 Americans, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

She encourages people to give blood to make an impact. “Even though you don't know who your blood is going to, you know that it’s someone who really needs it, whether it’s a transplant patient, someone in an accident or someone with a serious chronic disorder,” she said. “It’s really true - you are prolonging life.”

Organizers recommend that donors schedule an appointment for this blood drive by visiting and entering the sponsor code “49ers4Life,” calling 1-800-RED CROSS or downloading the Red Cross Blood Donor App. 

How to donate blood

To make an appointment, download the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). Donors can use RapidPass to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, from a computer or laptop. Visit to get started. 

A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in.

Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental consent in some states), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

Banner about blood drive; Norm has arm with bandaid and red gauze indicating he has donated. Says Tue. Jan 26, 8am-7pm, Barnhardt Student Activity Center

About the American Red Cross

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.