After the long-awaited event of senior prom, the class of 2022 has the opportunity to participate in one of their last main high school events on April 30. As the first class to have an in-person prom since the pandemic outbreak, there is much excitement and celebration in store for the seniors.
This year’s theme, decided by Senior Leadership, is “At Last” (I See the Light) from the Disney movie Rapunzel. Coming up with the final decision, however, took some time and team effort. “It took a week max because there were a lot of ideas and different names,” said Senior Leadership member Maegan Sigue. The process all started with splitting into groups and brainstorming on different types of themes and names. Then, they took several rounds of votes, narrowed down ideas, and finally ended up with “At Last.” It was the perfect title for the occasion since there were many delays of senior prom due to COVID up until now.
Senior Leadership, which includes about 30 members, has been involved with many school events in the past; but this event has been an especially challenging one due to the time restrictions and since it is “the first event planning since COVID hit,” said Class President and Senior Leadership member Nanami Yokoyama. “Due to the time restrictions we had, it was difficult to keep up with the timeline and get our own responsibilities done on time.” Back in the first semester, they already had in mind what venue they wanted, which was the Prince Waikiki Hotel. However, they didn’t start planning the event until the end of first semester, “which is later than usual when we plan a big event like prom,” so this delay tightened the timeline even further.
Despite the challenges, Senior Leadership successfully followed through, meeting all of the requirements, expectations, and goals so the senior class can enjoy their night at prom. “We have hit almost max capacity so hopefully everyone enjoys the night,” said Yokoyama.
Indeed, most (if not all) of the seniors are excited, even grateful, to attend this year’s prom. Janise Dixon who is also a member of Senior Leadership “feels so happy that our senior class gets our prom since it’s our first and last one, for some of us,” she exclaimed. “I’m looking forward to seeing everyone in beautiful outfits having fun at their last prom.” Similarly, Senior Go Susumu is “really looking forward to dressing up because I don’t have many occasions where [I] can dress formally or fancy, other than weddings or funerals,” he said.
In fact, this event also seems to bring hope to some individuals that life is normalizing after the heat of the pandemic. “I was afraid of missing out on the important things of my senior year, so having a prom and a graduation makes everything feel like life is going back to normal,” said Senior Andrea Ure.
The pandemic is not over yet so COVID restrictions are still in place. You are not required to be fully vaccinated, but you must either have proof of vaccination or a negative test within 48 hours prior to the event. And of course, you must wear a mask except when eating, drinking, or picture taking.
Although these restrictions are meant to ensure that everyone is safe, there are mixed feelings regarding the validity and necessity of these restrictions. Some feel they are reasonable: “I think the restrictions are reasonable considering the amount of students and guests attending our prom,” said Ure. “We are taking necessary precautions,” Dixon agreed. “It’s better safe than sorry.” On the other hand, others feel they aren’t absolutely necessary, particularly the masks: “I think the proof of vaccination is pretty valid, but mask mandates are being lifted for school and indoor places so I don’t see the reason to have them on for prom,” said Susumu.
Senior Prom is now only two days away, and it’s all thanks to the leadership committee and their hard work. We certainly have a night to look forward to – a night where we can dress up, eat delicious food and dessert, dance, and take pictures with our friends – and a night to remember.