Dover High School and Communities In Schools of Delaware will host the inaugural Ladies Empowerment Fashion Show & Dinner for about 150 female students and their accompanying mentors Saturday night.
The dinner and fashion show at Dover High aims to bolster the self-esteem of young women with the empowerment session focusing on topics such as self-confidence, etiquette and relationships, said Terisha Collins, site director of the Communities In Schools of Delaware satellite at the Capital School District flagship. Communities In School is the largest dropout prevention program in the United States and it has nine locations in Delaware, alone.
"Communities In Schools' mission is pretty simple – to surround students with a community of support, and empower them to stay in school and achieve in life," Collins said. "We want everyone to feel empowered. Young ladies have a lot of challenges on a daily basis. We wanted to make sure they had all the information they needed to meet those challenges."
Dover High Co-Principal for Administration Dr. Evelyn Edney said she was for any program that helped give young women a leg up.
"When they came to me with the idea of empowering young ladies, I said, 'Who says no to that?'" Edney said. "And making the right decisions is the key to empowerment. I'm excited to have it."
An important part of the program was for the young ladies to bring a mentor, Edney said.
"I'm bringing my buddy – my mom," Edney said. "She's my mentor."
Dover High staff members will participate in the fashion show along with students from both Dover High and Delaware State University, Collins said. And "the men of Dover High," namely faculty and staff members, will serve dinner.
In addition, Dover students will be able to discuss internship opportunities with a few local businesses as well as scholarship opportunities, she added.
Among those attending Saturday night's events are Dover High seniors Amoni Knight and Jada Davis.
"I just thought it would be great for my mom and I to attend," Knight said. "I want to learn more about college and see the fashion show."
The same goes for Davis. She will attend with her mother and one of her three sisters, Jamila, a Dover High junior.
"I just think it's a good idea for all girls to come to help them with everyday things like etiquette," Davis said. "I have three sisters so I can take what I learn and help them at home."
Davis hopes to study chemistry in college while Knight hopes to study exercise science and movement in college. Both students said they were still exploring all of their options.
Page 2 of 2 - Collins and Edney said they hoped the Ladies Empowerment Fashion Show & Dinner would become an annual event at Dover High. They gave credit to Dover High PTO officers Jerry Houston and Andres Ortiz and business teacher Tina Pickett for their extensive help in planning the event.
They also thanked Talbot's off Del. Route 8 and Amore Bridal off West Loockerman for sponsoring the sponsor show.
Collins said she hoped that the event could be replicated at Communities In Schools' other locations in Delaware.
The first-ever Ladies Empowerment Fashion Show & Dinner at Dover High School aims to teach young ladies more about etiquette skills, self-confidence, positive attitudes and staying on track in school. About 150 people had signed up for the event.