HOLLYWOOD (CBSLA.com) — Dozens of Los Angeles high school students facing tough odds were celebrated Thursday for their hard work in the classroom.

Karla Martinez is among the 85 students in the L.A. Unified School District chosen for the eighth annual Operation School Bell Prom Day, a partnership between the school district and the Assistance League of Los Angeles.

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Linda Levine of the Assistance League said: “They are chosen from Los Angeles Unified School District needy and homeless division. So their counselors find the most needy girls who do well in school.

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It’s not just the dresses. The girls also received shoes, accessories and hair and makeup tips.

Emerson College Los Angeles donated its space for the event. “I just feel very proud for Emerson to be associated with the Assistance League of Los Angeles and fantastic work they are doing, “said Kevin Bright, the Founding Director of Emerson College.

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“For young ladies who grow up homeless and are challenging tremendous adversity, for them to be able to feel confident and beautiful and enjoy prom, it’s almost a dream come true,” said Melanie Merians, the League’s CEO.