Mr. Wash. U. takes stage

| Staff Reporter
Scott Bressler | Campus in Focus

Junior Nick Prickel, who was crowned Mr. Wash. U. at last year’s Mr. Wash. U., dances to “Bye Bye Bye” by ’N Sync during the talent portion of the event.

The annual male pageant is about to roll back its curtains. Mr. Wash. U., City Faces’ signature fundraiser, will crown its new winner tomorrow night at the end of its annual show in Edison Theatre.

Architecture professor Bob Hansman started City Faces in 1995. According to the Mr. Wash. U. Web site, City Faces “works with teenagers and young adults living in public housing. Through the visual arts process, young people learn about problem solving, cooperation, self-evaluation and long-term planning, while discovering talents they did not know they had and developing employable skills.”

According to senior Sandy Chen, president of Mr. Wash. U., City Faces relies on Mr. Wash. U. as its main fundraiser.

Mr. Wash. U started about ten years ago when it became clear that the City Face’s program was expanding.

According to Chen, most of the money for the pageant is raised internally.

“There are a few private donations, but we raise the money that keeps them operating every year,” Chen said.

Four members of each class will appear in Mr. Wash. U. The executive board for Mr. Wash. U. chooses the semifinalists and allows the student body to vote for the four finalists each year. According to Chen, the board received close to 10,000 votes on the finalists, which she believes has led to a stronger group of finalists.

“We did not expect this type of interest,” Chen said. “People were really into voting for their friends. The popularity has grown and expanded on this campus,” Chen said.

According to Chen, the show consists of an opening dance with all 16 finalists. After a rose presentation in which the participants are introduced, the show breaks down into the individual classes, in which participants do a dance as a group and then each perform a talent.

After Bob Hansman and Jovan Hansman, the two founders of City Faces, speak about the charity, the children of City Faces come onto the stage with the participants of the show. Judges on an independent panel then choose four finalists, who do a trivia and question-and-answer section. After a final dance, the fundraising total and the new Mr. Wash. U. are announced.

“The winner is chosen based on their fundraising totals, résumés, their talents and their performances,” Bailey said.

According to Chen, Mr. Wash. U. raised $30,065 for City Faces last year. Fundraising has gradually increased over the past years, and Chen hopes for $30,000 more to be raised this year. Ibby’s has also been involved in raising funds for City Faces.

The candidates have each been allotted tickets to invite students to dine at Ibby’s on the designated night. When students dine at Ibby’s, they can give these tickets in as votes for their favorite candidate. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to City Faces in the name of the class candidate who receives the most support via votes each night.

Faculty and staff are also able to donate money to City Faces through Ibby’s.

The 16 participants are expected to raise at least $1,000 each for City Faces. These funds can be raised through many methods, including letter writing, bake sales, dorm-storming and other viable fundraising methods.

Although the show will be over on Thursday night, vice president of campus outreach, Tricia Bailey, emphasized that the participants’ and the executive board’s participation with City Faces will not end with the show.

“In the coming months, we will be interested in improving the City Faces tutoring program,” Bailey said. “We have been trying to emphasize the connection between the candidates and City Faces, so that has been important for all the candidates this year.”