Becoming an adult is a big step as well as a major part of everyone's life, regardless of the cultural background or gender. The transition from being a child to becoming an adult is a well-celebrated custom in many cultures through out the world. Although there are societies that don't acknowledge the conversion from being a child to becoming an adult, there are also those that greatly celebrate the change. Celebrations done around world signify the entrance of young men and women into a world of maturity and responsibility. While immigrating to the United States, some cultures have lost this tradition. Today, some "coming of age- celebrations are barely beginning to regain its popularity. Each celebration is done differently according to the culture. For example, the Filipino, Hispanic, Jewish, Swedish, American cultures are all different when it comes to these celebrations; from the customary age at which the celebration occurs to how it is done. Marina Willin states in her article, Coming Out the Debut of a Young American Woman , that in the dictionary it states that a debut is a formal presentation of young women to society which is often presented through a cotillion (formal ball especially for debuts). The Filipino culture's celebration of the cotillion or debut holds great significance. The cotillion/debut carries many similarities to the quinceañeras but at the same time it is different.
Many of the people who put on cotillions and debuts don't think about its history where this tradition originated and what influenced it to become the celebration that occurs today. During the 19th century the Philippines fell into the Spanish colonial rule .
for 300 years. During this time the Spaniards tried to force Spanish traditions on the Filipinos; but instead the Filipinos converted those tradition to better fit their concepts and ideas. Over time, Filipino families began to adopt the idea of celebrating their daughter's 18th birthday, meaning that she is ready to enter society and is available for marriage (Knudson 178).