On a night of Cinco de Mayo when most people go out and have fun, some medical students at Augusta University are celebrating the holiday in a different way.
Instead, they hosted a prom at Children’s Hospital of Georgia for the local high school patients who may have missed out on their own prom.
Shelby Howard who came up with the idea believes prom is one of the biggest events in any high school student’s life.
“Not knowing if they would be able to go to their own prom can be upsetting for students,” explained Howard. “Because as so many movies portray prom is a right of passage. Your prom is something you remember for the rest of your life. I feel like this prom will be more meaningful for them because its an experience they may have missed out.”
The medical students had been planning the event since Valentines Day. They raise money to send out invitations to 50 patients and their dates.
They wanted to make this event feel like a real high school prom. Sponsors like Chic-fil-A and Chicken Salad Chicks donated the food for the event and Men’s Wearhouse got on board and donated some suits.
“Now the students can tell stories about their experiences at prom with their friends rather than being left out of the conversation. You have those stories to tell and a way to connect with people and you can do that for the rest of your life,” said Howard.
The theme of the prom is “The Night of Hope.” The meaning behind the theme is, you can only hope for anything. As for Howard and her classmates they fulfilled that hope for the students. She said the plan is to continue the event annually.
“My one hope is that this can continue on because the groundwork is laid [out], said Howard.” Right now is just making sure the ball is moving.”
It seems the prom turned out to be a success. There was a photo booth to take pictures and a DJ, which allowed everybody to dance the night away.