Her Campus UIC had the privilege of speaking with Nikki Magnuson, the Love Your Melon Crew Captain at UIC. Club Spotlight is a new profile series, at Her Campus UIC, aimed to collaborate with and to promote other student organizations on campus.
HC: Tell me more about UIC’s Love Your Melon and what your organization does.
NM: Love Your Melon is an apparel brand dedicated to giving a hat to every child battling cancer in America, as well as supporting nonprofit organizations who lead the fight against pediatric cancer.
The Love Your Melon Campus Crew Program, at UIC, is an exclusive crew made up of students that are determined to improve the lives of children battling cancer. Campus crew members are the driving force behind Love Your Melon. In communities across the country, our crew members raise awareness for childhood cancer, represent the brand through promotions and sales events and personally engage with our charitable programming initiatives. The program has grown to include over 13,500 crew members nationwide at 840 different educational institutions.
On April 28, 2017, we celebrated and support superheroes all across the country who are battling pediatric cancer. We visited over 300 hospitals to deliver beanies to these amazing children!
HC: What is the purpose of having an Olympic themed table or selling beanies? What are the meanings behind each color and design? What materials are the beanies made out of? Is there a philanthropy or charity that the proceeds go to?
NM: Love Your Melon was founded in an entrepreneurship class, at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota, by two friends, Zachary and Brian. On a mission to improve the lives of children battling cancer since October 22nd, 2012, Love Your Melon began with the simple idea of putting a hat on every child battling cancer in America. After achieving the original goal of giving 45,000 hats — one for every child battling cancer in America — Love Your Melon set a new goal of giving one million dollars to pediatric cancer research and providing immediate support to children and their families. Fifty percent (50%) of the profit from the sales of all Love Your Melon products is given to Love Your Melon’s nonprofit partners in the fight against pediatric cancer. Our nonprofit partners work in the field of pediatric oncology, fund cancer research initiatives and provide immediate support for families of children battling cancer. To date, we have given over 3.8 million dollars and over 120,000 hats. Fifty percent (50%) of profit is calculated after taxes and fees are paid.
Superhero Beanie Giveaways: 15,000 children are diagnosed with cancer each year, and we strive to connect with all of them. At the heart of our Superhero Beanie Giveaways is the Love Your Melon Campus Crew Program. Our campus crew program at UIC is an incredible group of like-minded college students who are determined to improve the lives of children battling cancer. In communities across the country, our crew members raise awareness for childhood cancer and represent our brand by coordinating, planning, and running beanie donation events all year long.
Superhero Adventures: As children go through the challenging battle of cancer treatment, they often need more than medicine alone. Therapeutic treatments have been proven to increase treatment success, and at Love Your Melon, we are dedicated to providing this relief for children by creating an adventure they will never forget. Our campus crew members are able to take children and their family members on helicopter rides, and incredible day trips that feature their favorite activities and interests.
HOW IT’S MADE:
All of our products are made in the United States of America. We are passionate about connecting our consumers to the incredible people and companies who create our products.
BEANIES AND CUFFED BEANIES:
Softline Brand Partners is a full-service manufacturing firm dedicated to higher levels of craftsmanship and communication. Located in Minneapolis, MN, Softline makes the patches that go on our hats and deboss the Love Your Melon logo into the leather with a heat press.
HC: How can members go about joining the Love Your Melon Campus Crew?
NM: If you are determined to improve the lives of children battling cancer, raise awareness for childhood cancer, represent the brand through promotions and sales events and personally engage with our charitable programming initiatives, then I encourage you to apply on Love Your Melon's website to become a crew member!
HC: How often does your crew meet on or off campus?
NM: Having 20+ members on your crew can be difficult when accommodating for everyone’s schedules and finding a time and a place to come together to collaborate our ideas on how to improve the lives of children battling pediatric cancer -- but we make it work. We have bi-weekly meetings on Mondays, at the Richard J. Daley Library from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m., in addition to webinars (via Zoomcall) hosted by my co-crew captain, Rosario Gonzalez, and I.
HC: Nikki, thank you so much for taking time out of your day to speak with me about Love Your Melon and for inviting Her Campus to the Olympic-themed tabling event. We really appreciate it, and we are looking forward to more collaborations!
To find out more about LYM and how you can make an impact, head on over to https://www.loveyourmelon.com.
Check out our latest Children’s Storybook! Adventures of the Supercrew