The year’s most prom-inent event


Jonathan Xue

Students dance and mingle as strobing lights illuminate the room. This year’s prom was held at the Blanco Urban Venue in downtown San Jose.

by Felix Chen, Jonathan Xue, and Alison Yang

Strobing lights illuminate the room as music pounds, the floor thumping to the beat. Students laugh and dance with smiles on their faces as they attend prom, an “International Spy”-themed event on April 22 from 7:30 to 11 p.m. Around 330 participants took part in the dance and other activities offered.

This year’s prom was held at the Blanco Urban Venue in downtown San Jose. The space was divided into three major areas, with a dance floor and tables with snacks such as French fries and other refreshments on the first level. Above, students mingled on a deck with sweets ranging from Swedish Fish to Sour Patch, taking advantage of photo opportunities in front of a wall of flowers. In the uppermost area, shaded by a large canopy, students competed in mock gambling with fake chips for raffle tickets. Of all the activities, prom attendee Andrew Smith (11) especially enjoyed dancing on the first floor.

“The energy from the music was solid,” Andrew said. “There were a few particularly hype songs played at most dances that were missed at this one, but I [still enjoyed] ‘HUMBLE’ by Kendrick [Lamar] and ‘Just Wanna Rock’ by [Lil Uzi Vert].”

Students write their names on the backs of tickets, entering themselves into raffles. Five raffles were held at the prom venue, with juniors and seniors competing for separate prizes. (Jonathan Xue)

Alongside the students dancing and socializing, adults helped chaperone, making the event possible. Upper school English teacher Christopher Hurshman, who has attended Harker prom for over three years, commented on why he believes acting as an adult chaperone is so meaningful.  

“[I chaperone dances] because chaperoning is an important role,” Hurshman said. “It’s something the school needs us to do. Ms. Enzensperger and Mr. Kallbrier work hard to find a group of adults who are able to keep our students safe while also allowing them to have a good time.”

Associated Student Body (ASB) held a promposal raffle to encourage school spirit a month before prom. Participants submitted videos of their promposals, and winners Samvita Gautham (12) and Kris Estrada (12) won free flowers, a corsage and a boutonniere. Raffles were also held at the prom venue, with juniors and seniors entering themselves into separate drawings for prizes. Seniors Vivian Bi and Sonya He won the senior suite for the end-of-year Laguna trip, Chris Tonev (12) won the disney memorabilia and gift card package, Jack Yang (11) won the junior prime parking spot, Ford Johnson (11) won the “night of fun” package and Rohan Gorti (12) won Beats headphones and a polaroid camera.

As the date of prom approached, upperclassmen around campus prepared for the event by browsing for possible ensembles. Some attendees, like Andrew, went with classic evening wear while others, like Lucy Feng (12), made their own outfits. 

For the class of 2023, this year’s prom was their last high school social, the culmination of a high school experience. For some seniors, like Athreya Daniel (12), prom was also their first dance. 

“[My prom preparations] were pretty last minute,” Athreya said. “But I think that was the fun of it. The experience was new, but it was fun for me.”