The Cotillion tradition in Wellesley began in the 1940’s as “The Christmas Cotillion” – an exclusive dance attended by the members of a dance class from Wellesley. This event offered a social setting for students to practice dancing skills and to prepare the students for events they would be attending for the rest of their lives.

In the 1950s The Christmas Cotillion evolved into two separate dances, a formal dance for college students returning home for the holidays and a second celebration for all high school juniors and seniors.  While the college dance was discontinued during the 1960s, the high school dance continues today as “The Wellesley Cotillion.”

The Wellesley Cotillion continues to be an elegant forum for high school junior and senior students. In keeping with the Cotillion tradition, students are asked to dress for the special occasion, go through the traditional receiving line, greet parent chaperones, and introduce their dates.