The History of Prom

Article by Anugraha Babuji

Photo compiled by Jiyoung Kim

On the Saturday of April 18th 2015, ISM’s Junior and Senior Prom, hosted by the Junior class of 2016, happened at the Fairmont Hotel, Makati. This year’s theme was “Clair de Lune”, a french expression for “Under the Moonlight”. Some of you might be wondering, what EXACTLY is prom? What is the purpose of prom, and when and how was prom first established?

According to the Oxford Dictionary of English, Prom is a formal dance that is held by a class in high school or college at the end of the year. Historians believe that Prom originated in the 1800s and emerged from the idea of upper-class debutante balls held in the High Society (The History Of Prom, The History of Water Filter). The very first historical reference made to Prom was made in the journal of an Amherst College student, in 1894, in which he described his invitation to and attendance at the Prom at Smith College (The History, Pretty for Prom). Prom was initially an important event, exclusive to the college environment, but soon emerged in high schools as well.

That being said, one of the main traditions for Prom that is prominent in schools worldwide is the “Promposal”. At ISM, many students have sucked up the courage to prompose to their “significant others” or friends. One case of the latter would be that of Junior Mir Sultan, who Promposed to Junior Ayesha Baloch.

Mir had prepared a very unique and enjoyable Promposal for Ayesha, in which Mir performed a bollywood song and had a few friends to dance in the background, whilst he took Ayesha’s hand for a little bollywood couple dance. When asked about the significance about the prom to him, Mir responded by saying, “Prom is a night of celebration! A night to take away the stresses in life and really come together with your friends”. To add on to all the hype of their Promposal, both Juniors have been nominated for the Prom Court, for Prom Prince and Princess. In response to being nominated for Prom Princess, Ayesha says, “I was super shocked…I thought it was a joke! But its super flattering cause this is the first time something like this happened.” Mir on the other hand, responds to his Prom Prince nomination by saying “Well initially I didn’t care, but seems like I’ve caught Prom-Fever, and now I hope I win… but to be honest, I’m really honored.”

When asked about the whole Promposal experience, Mir replied by saying “My favorite thing to do is to put a smile on someones face and I tried to do that with my proposal.” After being asked to describe her experience of being Promposed to by Mir, Ayesha replied by saying “I didn’t know what to say at all but it was probably one of the nicest things anyone’s done for me.”

With that being said, ISM’s Prom 2015 turned out to be a great success and was enjoyed by attendees. Hopefully, this Prom has satisfied the Class of 2015’s standards for their Senior prom, and the Juniors really hope they had a great night that will be remembered for the rest of their lives!

“The History of Prom.” The History of Prom. Pretty for Prom, n.d. Web. 15 Apr. 2015. <>.

“The History of Prom.” The History of Prom. The Water Filters, n.d. Web. 15 Apr. 2015. <>.