Students support prom dress project

High School students searching for the perfect prom dress for this year's prom. Photo credit: Chelsea Jeffers

Racks upon racks hung in the busy room, with dresses of every size and color.

More than 500 gowns were up for grabs April 13 on campus for high school students to try on for prom night.

Esmeralda Mejia, a senior liberal studies major, is in charge of donations for Student California Teachers Association.

“I’m always really happy when they go out and leave with a dress,” she said.

Mejia remembers that her mother-in-law lent her a dress for her prom.

“When I found out about Cinderella’s Closet, it got to me a lot, because for my prom, I didn’t have a dress,” Mejia said.

Morgan Heffley, a high school senior at Inspire School of Arts and Sciences, attended the event.

Senior year is already expensive with graduation, so it’s nice to not have to pay for a dress, Heffley said.

Morgan and her mother, Nancy Heffley, have been to Cinderella’s Closet three times now, once for Morgan’s older sister when she was a senior.

“Every year we’ve been successful, and it really makes a difference if we can afford for her to go to prom, so it’s a gift to the community,” Nancy Heffley said.

Pam Morrell, adviser for Student California Teachers Association, said people who donated are thrilled to clean out their closets and help local high school students.

Lizet Esparza, a senior liberal studies major, is president of Student California Teachers Association.

High schools in Chico, Willows, Gridley, Paradise, Biggs, Oroville and Live Oak were a part of the dress donation project, Esparza said.

“You think of the dress, the shoes, the hairdo, makeup it all adds up, and then you have dinner, pictures and all that, so it’s just a big expense,” Esparza said.

Amanda Hovik can be reached at [email protected] and @AmandaHovik on Twitter.