Photography by Martin Harris, BritSnap
Andrea Hayes Large
Junior, Montgomery Catholic; 16 years old
• Hopes to start a program for underprivileged kids who aren’t told they can succeed
• Has played on the Varsity soccer team since 7th grade
Andrea Hayes was in seventh grade the first year she tried out for the varsity soccer team at Montgomery Catholic Preparatory School. “My dad started coaching me when I was in kindergarten, and he encouraged me to go out for the varsity team because it would push me.” Being one of the youngest on the team allowed her to be friends with people she may not have known otherwise. Now, as one of the upperclassmen on the team, she’s able to mentor younger girls.
Besides soccer, Andrea is part of a group called Teen Core that her youth minister started. Teens in the group minister to other teens by preparing talks, being available for advice and participating in activities. Andrea enjoys being able to share her faith with others because it helps her grow closer to God. “It allows me to center my life around what truly matters,” she said. “With all the struggles I face and might face in my future, I’m provided with a stronghold that will not go away.”
one day I hope to . . .
“One day I hope to start a mentoring program for underprivileged kids who don’t come from a family or background that encourages them to succeed. Eventually, maybe I’d be able to establish a scholarship program.”
PG (parental guidance) rating
“My mom and dad have always pushed good grades, but it was because they knew me and my sister were capable of getting A’s. My mom has always encouraged me to do what I love because that’s what will make me happiest.”
Andrea’s mother Julia is constantly awed by her daughter’s determination in life. “Andrea has an amazing desire to help and assist others with unconditional love,” she said. “It’s evident the happiness she gets when she has reached and helped another person.”
Not only does Andrea thrive in taking care of others, she also excels in school and extracurricular activities. “I have helped Andrea reach her potential by showing her how to believe in herself,” Julia said, “and that she can reach anything she sets her mind to reach.”
parent to parent
“The best advice I have to share is to have open communication with your teenager. Know that they are individuals that have to set their own path, and you have to assist them in developing that path. If you have open communication, you develop trust, respect and understanding for each other.”