Graduation Ends in Flash Mob Marriage Proposal
College of Health and Human Development Crowd Erupts in Cheers
May 20, 2012
Rocio Almaraz, who is graduating magna cum laude from Cal State Fullerton with a bachelor of science degree in human services, organized a flash mob dance as a surprise for attendees at her CSUF commencement exercise Sunday in Titan Stadium.
For those in the stands, they held up a sign, reading: “Thank you Parents and Friends.”
While dancing alongside her classmates, Almaraz got an even bigger surprise — from her boyfriend, Alex Carrillo of South Gate, who had arranged for the flash mob members to keep on dancing when the song playing over the loudspeaker switched to Bruno Mars’ “Marry Me.”
Next, a hand-painted banner was unfurled in the stands that read: “Rocio Will You Marry Me?”
Down on the field, Almaraz of Maywood was so caught up in the dancing, she had to be tapped on the shoulder a few times and urged to look up to see the banner, which was decorated with hearts, including one for the dot over the i in her first name.
Screaming with excitement, she put her hands over her face and started crying. Then she saw her boyfriend standing at the far end of the grass, ran over and jumped into his arms. Then, Carrillo got down on one knee and handed her a long-stemmed red rose and a ring.
Meanwhile, family members, friends, classmates and strangers in the audience were clapping and cheering. Photographers and videographers, who had been tipped off in time to be at the ceremony, recorded the happy moment. It wasn't a surprise to anyone when she hugged him her answer.
“He had been telling me to get ready because he was going to propose on my birthday next month,” said Almaraz, 23. “So, this was a total surprise. I’m in shock! My trick for my family was the surprise flash mob dance, and here I got tricked. This couldn't have been a better day.”