The Marvin Center Grand Ballroom transformed into a high school cafeteria Friday night as students danced and mingled as though they were at the prom.
About 260 students decked out in gowns and suits gathered together for the Class Council’s third annual Charity Ball. Profits from $15 event tickets and $1 raffle tickets went to Coaching for College, a mentoring program in the Shaw District of D.C. that encourages high school students to continue their education.
The ball raised $4,600 for the charity.
“We figured we’d so something great from a great cause,” said Class Council President Josh Schimmerling. “(Coaching for College mentors) work in the Shaw area, and since that’s part of the District we thought it would be a great way of giving back to the community.”
Students dined on finger foods including buffalo wings and mini spinach quiches and danced to hip-hop hits and classic oldies. A spirited DJ from Creative DJs based out of Baltimore ran the music.
At one point during the ball, the DJ played “the Cha-Cha Slide” and the rows of dancing students attempted to coordinate hops and direction changes in formal dresses and suits.
The 35 members of Class Council attended the event, helping in hour-long shifts by checking tickets at the door, taking coats and selling last-minute raffle tickets. Students won televisions, DVD players and weekend stays at area hotels, including other prizes.
Several students also waited in a relatively long line to get caricatures drawn alone or with a significant other. An artist sketched people sitting in hot tubs, as president and vice president of the United States and as sailors, while chatting with his subjects.
After the ball, some attendees headed upstairs an “after party” in the Hippodrome. Students munched on fare from Big Burger and listened to the sounds of a capella groups. Sons of Pitch, a relatively new all-male group, and the popular Emocapella serenaded the crowd.
Class Council spent $4,500 to throw the ball, using its funds and co-sponsorship from the Student Association, Program Board, SA Dinning Services Commission and Triple Play. Class Council members gave attendees T-shirts with the words “I had a ball” on the front.
Although students said they enjoyed dancing at the ball, organizers and attendees said they were also proud to donate.
“I was looking for a good social event that was connected with the city,” sophomore Ryan Wheeler said. “It shows that GW does care.”
“Coaching for College is exactly the kind of charity we look for,” said Class Council member Ori Korin, who came up with the idea to donate to Coaching for College. “It’s local, it involves kids and they do something not only academic but social.”
-Julie Gordon contributed to this report.