Latin dance raises funds for HBSA

By By Veronica Pineda

By Veronica Pineda

The Hispanic Business Student Association swept the public off its feet with the debut of Bailamos, a Latin dance fundraiser, Saturday from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. in the Union Ballroom.

About 425 students and community members entered the Union Ballroom, surpassing the student group’s initial expectation of 300. Not only were there U students, but students from Utah State University, BYU, Salt Lake Community College, and Utah Valley University were also invited by the HBSA.

The purpose of the dance was to collect enough money to send 25 HBSA members to a national conference in Fort Worth, Texas in November. This giant networking event would help members find jobs in corporations such as Freddie Mac and Goldman Sachs8212;which announced plans last week to create more than 100 new positions in Utah during the next year.

General admission was $7, though U students and their friends, who received special text messages about the event, got in for a discounted $5. Although organizers have not calculated the net profit yet, they estimated the dance party raised more than $2,000.
For the first hour of the fundraiser, Diana Franco and Tony Terre provided free dance lessons for anyone who wanted to keep up with their friends later in the night. Both instructors had previously taught salsa at Studio 600 in Salt Lake City.

“It’s a good environment,” Franco said. “It’s clean. It’s fun. It’s a good place to dance.”
DJ Remex and DJ Drew, both members of the HBSA, presented music from various Latino and hip-hop artists. The attendees danced to everything in Latin music from salsa and merengue to bachata and reggaeton.

Halfway through the event, three couples from the Drugaya Forma, a Salt Lake City salsa team, presented a special dance performance.

This is the first year HBSA held a Latin dance fundraiser.

“It just shows there is a demand for Latin dances,” said Brian Gutierrez, the Bailamos event coordinator. “This is the first of many to come.”

HBSA has grown exponentially in the past five years. The student group started in 2004 with only three members, and today about 60 members from various ethnicities and majors actively participate.

“We are grateful for the support of HBSA,” Gutierrez said. “It took everyone’s effort.”

Julian Gomez

The Hispanic Business Student Association held a Latin dance party Saturday night at the Union Ballroom to raise money for the organization to send students to a conference in Texas.