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Howard Community College’s Center for Service Learning Teams-Up with Hospitality Management Class To Ensure Local High School Girls in Need Have “The Perfect Prom”

February 25, 2013

Amidst Cupid’s favorite season, “The Perfect Prom Project” is coming straight from students’ hearts

Columbia, Maryland  — Howard Community College’s (HCC) Service Learning Center has teamed-up with students enrolled in a hospitality management class (HGMT 164) to ensure that numerous high school girls in Howard County will experience the perfect prom despite the region’s prevailing economic downturn. Visa, Inc. completed a survey concluding that the average prom experience costs approximately $800.00. “The Perfect Prom Project” will help defy the financial odds. As it all starts with the perfect dress, organizers have coordinated a full-scale prom donation drive where HCC faculty, staff and students are donating like-new dresses, sparkly accessories and shoes through Friday, February 22. So far, 20 prom dresses, 10 pieces of jewelry and 4 pairs of shoes have been secured.  Just 80 more prom dresses need to be donated by February 22, 2013! All sizes, contemporary styles and colors are being collected and carefully stored on campus.This spring Howard Community College is offering over 50 noncredit continuing education courses, at least 40 of them offered for this first time. Online registration begins Feb. 20; walk-in, fax, and mailed registrations starts March 8. Mailed brochures reach county residences the second week of March.

A swell of support has been received by HCC faculty, staff and students who have been making donations at five designated campus “prom drop-offs:”  the Center for Service Learning, Continuing Education Office, Development Office, Office of Student Life; and the Security Office.

The prom dress donation drive is sponsored by the college’s Professional/Technical Constituency group.

Free Spring Shopping Party & “Boutique” to Be Created by HCC Hospitality & Management Class

Also functioning as a service learning opportunity for HCC’s hospitality management students, “The Perfect Prom Project” has been designed to help students in the HGMT 164 class apply planning theories and budgeting skills to develop a free spring “shopping party” in a specially-designed on-campus “boutique” for the high school girls at the end of March.  While learning to apply event-coordinating workforce skills, the HCC students will also learn the importance of social responsibility and the need to support those in the community.

In planning the shopping day, each HCC student will apply for and fill a specific job with defined event-execution responsibilities. From choosing a theme for decorations to creating a menu to developing activities for girls in the waiting area, the HCC students will assist in running the once-in-a-lifetime event for the high school girls.

On shopping day, the girls will choose their dresses from a boutique-style room created by the hospitality management class. With their own personal stylists in tow, the girls will select and try-on dresses, accessories and shoes. The ultimate objective of the event will be to make the girls feel beautiful in a dream dress that will enable them to remember fondly one of the most highly anticipated events of high school --- The Prom.

About HCC
Howard Community College (HCC) is a publicly funded two-year community college serving the educational needs of the citizens and employers in Howard County, Maryland since 1970. With its slogan, “You Can Get There from Here,” the college has forged a variety of partnerships to offer career and transfer programs to over 30,000 students annually at its main campus in Columbia, the Ecker Business Training Center, Laurel College Center, and Mount Airy College Center for Health Care Education. Located midway between two major metropolitan areas, Washington DC and Baltimore, MD, Howard Community College is an affordable, community-based institution that has long been recognized for its ability to inspire learning, and the lifelong pursuit of personal and professional goals. Among its many awards is the prestigious U.S. Senate Productivity Award for organizational performance excellence.