It seems you can’t go walking around UW-L’s campus without seeing someone wearing a Love Your Melon Hat. Love Your Melon’s goal is to help out children battling cancer with each hat purchased. We are lucky to have a chapter here at UW-L and I was very lucky to get to interview the captain of UW-L’s Love Your Melon chapter: Delaney Miller.
Marketing and Management
HC: Dream Job?
My dream job has always been to be the president of the marketing department for a professional sports organization, ideally in Major League Baseball but we will see where life takes me.
HC: What is Love Your Melon about?
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. We sell basically everything: beanies, baseball caps, bucket hats, shirts, leggings, coffee cups, lanyards, phone cases, basically anything now.
The start up of the company is actually kind of cool, it all began back in 2012 by Zachary Quinn and Brian Keller at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota. It started off as a class project where they were told to come up with a business where they could sell something as if it was a lemonade stand. Zach and Brian set out to create a business and find a way to give back to the community and they did just that! It has now grown into a nation-wide organization with over 11,000 ambassadors. They have campus crews across the country working together to make a difference within their community and to hold events that create lasting memories and smiles for the children battling cancer.
HC: When did this club come to UW-L?
I am not entirely certain when our crew was officially established at UW-L, but I believe it was in 2014. We were one of the original 14 campus crews in the country, which is something we take huge pride in as a crew since there are now over 800 campus crews nation-wide today!
HC: What made you want to join Love Your Melon?
As cliché as it sounds, I wanted to join Love Your Melon because I wanted to make more of an impact. I can remember going to involvement fest looking to get involved in campus organizations and not having anything really “click”. There wasn’t anything that really matched my interest to spark my attention until a couple months later when I stumbled across the original Love Your Melon Facebook ad. I didn’t know much about the whole organization at the time but bought a hat anyways. It became my new obsession, I mean it; they were actually really cool hats and they supported an even better cause so I could justify it in my bank account too. When I heard about the amazing things the organization was doing for children, how college students were coming together to deliver the hats, and how they had newly established a campus crew at UW-L, there was no hesitation that I wanted to get involved any way possible and luckily enough, it happened.
HC: What is your favorite thing about LYM?
Without a doubt, my favorite thing about Love Your Melon is the children. I have had the opportunity to meet some amazing and inspiring kids and they truly are the real superheroes. When you are able to help make their face light up with pure joy even when they are in pain from their treatment or are just fighting to stay positive, it leaves a lasting impact. It is imprinted in your mind permanently and reminds you that you can get through just about anything if they can handle the battles they face at such a young age.
Not only that, but to talk to the family and hear their stories, it really impacts you. I once had a mom come up to me and thank our crew repeatedly because it was “the first time she had seen him smile that big since his treatment began.” Those are hands down irreplaceable memories that really stick with a person. If you ask any of our crew members, they will probably have the same answer, but it really is an organization that is “for the kids” and seeing that aspect of it is definitely the best part of Love Your Melon.
HC: Are you involved in anything else outside of LYM?
I actually am really heavily involved in the athletics department here on campus. I have been working for them for three years now doing a wide variety of things ranging from event coordination to marketing to game day operations. Between LYM, athletics, and school, I don’t have much time for anything else.
HC: How do you think being apart of this organization will help you in the future?
I really didn’t expect it but being the captain of the UW-L crew has taught me so much that will help me in the future. From leadership and managerial skills to promotional skills, Love Your Melon has really helped hone in on a lot of the skills necessary for my degree and career path. On top of that, I think the biggest thing that being apart of Love Your Melon will help me with is my communication skills. Reaching out to families and communicating with these kids during difficult times is much harder than you can imagine and sometimes I still struggle with the right thing to say but I feel like being in this organization has definitely improved those skills.
HC: How can other UW-L students support or get involved with LYM?
There is a lot of different options for other students to get involved with Love Your Melon. The easiest way to support Love Your Melon, and our crew specifically, is to follow us on our social media platforms.
An even better way to show your support is to purchase one of our products and credit our crew at check out. Many people don’t really know it but that is the best, most effective way to help support our crew because with each purchase that is credited to us, we receive a point. Once we accumulate enough points (or what we call credits), it allows us to reach out to local families and hold donation events for the kids in our very own community.
Another thing UW-L students could do is sign up for our volunteer email list. Unfortunately, our crew has a maximum capacity of 25 ambassadors so this volunteer list allows us to keep track of the students interested in being apart of our crew in the future. We use the list to share important information about upcoming events, product releases, new position openings within our crew, as well as to share when we are looking for additional help for some of our larger events.
The last thing you can do to show support for our campus crew, and Love Your Melon in general, is to wear your LYM gear with pride everywhere you go. It helps promote our brand indirectly, as well as helps others see the actual impact we are making. Our crew loves seeing people on campus and in the community rocking our hats and apparel and we would love to see it even more!