Onyx: Partying with a Purpose

Students from the Harvard Community were decked out in their most stylishly sexy, yet cool black attire in support of Hurricane Katrina Relief Efforts. The HBS African American Student Union (AASU) started the semester off in a big way by sponsoring the Onyx Party on September 23, 2005. Co-Chairs of the AASU Social Committee, Chance Cuffe and Carl Christopher, had been planning a party to welcome the Class of 2007 and returning ECs. It was after Dean Light challenged MBA students to creatively make a difference with the New Orleans relief efforts that the two decided to have students party with a purpose.

The Onyx Party had a special purpose so it indeed needed a special and unique venue. Partygoers were invited to the Veronique Ballroom at the Longwood Towers in Brookline. The facade resembled a castle which was perfect as students were treated like royalty. Guests spent the evening partying in a 1920s ballroom complete with the original historic moldings and mezzanine.

It was obvious that partygoers spent time getting fabulous but this did not keep them from tearing up the dance floor. The crowd was nonstop as D.J. Roy Barboza, one of Boston’s most recognizable Hip Hop DJs featured on JAM’N 94.5, played all of the hottest songs.

The Onyx Party was successful in capturing interest from various schools at Harvard, including the Medical, Dental, Law, Education and Divinity Schools. Carl Christopher credits the diverse turnout to the powerful mission behind the party: “The devastation of Hurricane Katrina not only affected the United States, but it directly affected AASU members and members of the entire HBS and Harvard communities. Students want to help.”

The night ended for 300+ partygoers around 2:00AM on a surprisingly chilly morning. Partygoers, although sweaty and exhausted, were wrapped with the warmth of knowing they had a ball while helping to make a difference in the lives of others.

Co-Presidents Natalie Eckford and Francis Idehen excitedly reported that not a portion or a percentage, but rather ALL profit from the Onyx Party will be donated to help Hurricane Katrina victims.

If you missed this awesome party, Chance Cuffe encourages all RCs and ECs to attend upcoming AASU events such as the Brown Sugar Party in November, co-sponsored with the South Asian Business Club (SABA) or the H. Naylor Fitzhugh Business Conference in February. AASU would love to see a true reflection of the HBS population at all upcoming events.