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‘Stranger Things’ features Emerson College in its new season. One student is raising thousands for Uvalde victims as a result.

Emerson College is located in downtown Boston.Lane Turner/Globe Staff

A senior at Emerson College is selling shirts that mimic the one featured in the new season of “Stranger Things” and donating the thousands of dollars in profit to the victims of the Uvalde, Texas, shooting.

When Emerson students tuned into Netflix for the Season Four premiere of the hit show “Stranger Things,” they saw that Nancy Wheeler, a main character, wore an Emerson College t-shirt that featured the Boston institution’s logo from the 1980s, the time period when the show is set. A minor plot line involves Jonathan Byers, Wheeler’s boyfriend, who decides not to follow her to Emerson after high school. The previous seasons showed Wheeler as an aspiring journalist and Byers as a talented photographer, so Emerson, with its popular majors in journalism and film, is a perfect, albeit somewhat niche, school for the show’s writers to pick.


Reagan Allen, a 20-year-old Emerson student who wants to pursue design as a career, saw an opportunity. The logo in “Stranger Things” is long retired but Allen decided to recreate it and sell shirts like the one worn by Nancy Wheeler. Allen said she is a “big fan of ‘Stranger Things’” and only needed about 20 minutes on Adobe Illustrator to recreate the design.

Allen’s original goal was to sell 50 shirts. In less than one day, she has sold more than 1,000 shirts — and the number is going up. So far, she has raised more than $11,000, and she’s opting to give all of the profits to the Texas Elementary School Shooting Victims Fund. The Uvalde tragedy is close to Allen’s heart, as she is from San Antonio, Texas, and feels connected to the Uvalde community, which is about an hour and a half away from her home.

The shirt sales started to take off, Allen said, after posting the link in a private Facebook group for Emerson students and alumni that has more than 16,000 members. From there, group members have shared the design to other platforms, such as an Instagram account with more than two million followers. Since the season’s premiere, many other custom shirt websites have come out with versions for sale.


Meanwhile, Emerson students are talking about the show and the t-shirt.

Annie Bennett can be reached at annie.bennett@globe.com.