Granite High World

Filed under Feature, Showcase

New Friends Prom

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Typically known as “The Most Magical Night of Your Life,” prom is the Disney World of our high school careers, so it’s only fair that everyone gets the opportunity to experience it, including the students in the GCHS Special Education department.

Pullquote Photo

The New Friends Prom makes sure everyone can experience the rite of passage that is Prom. It’s vital to the high school experience for most, and having a special night for the special needs kids enables them to experience it.”

— Emma Vinson

Friday, April 7th, the special needs students at GCHS got to experience their very own prom. The 6th Annual New Friends Prom was held at Edwardsville High School. EHS student council was in charge of the event. Special needs students from Edwardsville, Triad, Highland, Collinsville, Alton, Granite City, Roxana, East Alton-Wood River and Piasa Southwestern got to experience the magic of prom. Schools all over the county chipped in with donations of food and goodies. The culinary class from Triad High School helped in preparing an Italian feast for the event.

“The New Friends Prom makes sure everyone can experience the rite of passage that is Prom. It’s vital to the high school experience for most, and having a special night for the special needs kids enables them to experience it,” stated Emma Vinson, a senior at GCHS, one of the many volunteers at the New Friends Prom. “By providing an inclusive atmosphere, GCHS puts every person at our school on display and shows us that though these kids have their challenges, they are just as capable of having a fun night out.”

Members of the GCHS National Honor Society helped work the event, including Stephanie Mullen, Gabby Lucas, and Perla Hermenegildo.

“The special needs kids seemed really happy and excited that we were hanging out with them and helping them get ready for their big night,” Stephanie stated, “Kyree (a student attending the dance) danced the entire time and he is AMAZING at dancing, I think he’s gonna be in the talent show. Let me tell you, he has got moves.”

The idea for the New Friends Prom came from a similar event put on by former Cardinals player Albert Pujols and his foundation, Pujols Family Foundation. Pujols created the Pujols Family Foundation to bring awareness to children living with down syndrome. The Autumn Prom was held on October 27th of 2017 with over 500 students attending. With hope to make an impact on the Madison County students, the New Friends Prom was born.

Gabby Lucas, a GCHS volunteer at the prom said that her experience working the prom was “Amazing! Honestly both the New Friends Fall Festival and the New Friends Prom is probably as fun if not way more fun than our actual homecoming, plus they play better music!”

Students volunteering worked before and during the dance to help make the night super special for everyone attending. Before the prom girl students help the special needs ladies get ready by doing their hair and makeup. The male volunteers helped by tying bow tie and ties, when it was time for the dance, all of the students looked their absolute best.

The prom/homecoming is honestly the best thing I’ve done for NHS.”

— Gabby Lucas

While helping with the dance students volunteering took their time really getting to know the special needs students, Perla Hermenegildo, a senior in NHS stated, “They are truly some of the best kids, and I wish more students had the opportunity to talk to them. They have so much fun out there and that truly makes it such a fun time. Being yourself and not being worried about being judged by anyone is something you don’t see at our regular dance events.”

Perla also explained that “the new friends prom benefits us by allowing some of the students to get to know our peers with special needs, but also allowing them to get to know other students from other schools who are just like them.”

Using one word to describe the event, Perla used “Unforgettable.”

“The prom/homecoming is honestly the best thing I’ve done for NHS,” stated Gabby Lucas, “It’s a night where you solely devote yourself to making other people happy and it is actually the best feeling in the world. The fact that you know that you know that you are making a difference in someone’s life is humbling plus you get to have fun while doing it. I recommend everyone who gets the chance to go for it, it’s a blast.”

There’s something magical that happens when students come together to help other students. When we band together and do little things, like helping with New Friends Prom, all of us help build community and relationships with one another. The Tribe is more than just the cheering section at a football game, it’s the whole student body. The Tribe is every club, every sport, and every student. We all matter and its going to take all of us stepping up to make our high school what we want it to be.

What will you do to help?

#GCstrong

About the Writer
Skylar Burns, Editor-in-Chief

Skylar Burns is a senior at GCHS and is the current Editor-in-Chief for Granite High World. Skylar best known for being Head Drum Major of the Granite City Marching Warriors Band, Secretary of National Honor Society and the student board member of the Granite City Board of Education. She plays many instruments including Tenor Saxophone, Piano, Ukulele, and Guitar. Music is apart of her everyday life and she wouldn’t want it any other way. During Skylar’s freshman and sophomore year she participated in many school plays. Some of her roles include Sally in the 9th annual production of The Christmas Carol, Franny the Fox in the 2016 production of Little Red Riding Hood, and Draco the Dragon on the 2017 production of Rapunzel. Skylar has two big jobs outside of high school as well. She is currently employed at the Granite City Ice Rink and is the Worship Leader for Uncommon Student Ministries in Bethalto, IL.  If you don’t find Skylar in the band room, you will most likely find her working with Mr. Puhse or helping out at Granite High World.  She loves journalism and is excited for senior year!

Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • Feature

    Athletes Trading Places

  • New Friends Prom

    Feature

    GCHS Veterans Day Tribute 2018

  • New Friends Prom

    Feature

    Band: Sport or Activity?

  • New Friends Prom

    Feature

    Welcome Back Rally

  • Feature

    A Day in the Life of a Skeleton

  • Feature

    GCHS KeKe Challenge

  • New Friends Prom

    Feature

    Granite City High School Color Guard

  • New Friends Prom

    Feature

    Working Warriors

  • New Friends Prom

    Feature

    Wrestling in the City

  • New Friends Prom

    Feature

    Fortnite Dance Challenge

The student news site for Granite City High School
New Friends Prom