West Hartford Magazine’s 6th annual ‘Terrific Teen’ issue spotlights noteworthy graduates who are making a difference in our community!
By Lisa Lelas
Every autumn West Hartford Magazine takes great pride in introducing a few recent high school graduates as examples of excellence in our community, and who look to have bright futures. While we cannot possibly include all of the worthy students, we have selected eight students from the four West Hartford high schools as this year’s “Terrific Teens”!
Each of these students possesses an admirable work ethic with a drive to succeed and a desire to make a difference in the world. They exemplify what being a good role model is all about, and although they are not seeking fame, our community has noticed them as future “movers and shakers” of the world.
This year we sought out a natural setting for the Terrific Teen photo session, and were not disappointed with the beauty of West Hartford’s Westmoor Park.
Congratulations Hayley Eicher of Kingswood Oxford!
Future musical theater star
Some may say Hayley was already bitten by the performing bug when she just a toddler. She has been dancing since the age of 3 and originally set her sights on becoming a ballerina. A few years ago, she began taking voice lessons and studying musical theater.
“My ultimate goal now is Broadway,” she says. “But I’d be happy anywhere doing theater.” She is currently a musical theater major at Syracuse University.
“My biggest mentors in the business have been my teachers in high school and at the Hartt School. My acting coach at Kingswood Oxford, Joshua M. Seder, was probably most influential to me. Without him I wouldn’t be where I am now. He helped me discover my strengths and weaknesses and taught me how to shape them both. Also, my parents (JoAnn and Doug Eicher) and my sisters (Lauren and Julie). Having a family that is supportive of the arts is very important.”
Aside from performing, Hayley embraces all art forms. She started her own small jewelry business called “Chunky Heel by HBE” featuring handmade jewelry items she sells via Instagram (@chunkyheel.by.HBE).
Hayley will never forget her involvement with Team Tobati at KO. This is an annual mission trip to Tobati, Paraguay, a town well below the poverty line, whereby students help the community by constructing and renovating buildings and more. “It was really eye opening to what poverty looks like compared to what we think of poverty in America. So many people are living in cardboard boxes. I have become much more appreciative of what we have. Be thankful for what you have but be aware of how other people live. Experiencing this in person is really humbling.”
In high school Hayley played field hockey and did yoga. “I was also part of the GSA club [Gender and Sexuality Alliance] and the fashion club.”
Her favorite food: chocolate. Favorite color: pink. As a self-proclaimed “coffee snob,” Hayley’s favorite hangout place in town is J.René Coffee Roasters on Park Road.
Her favorite quote comes from the hit show “Hamilton”: “There’s a million things I haven’t done, just you wait … just you wait!”
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