In early 2002, Hayley Arceneaux and her family took a much-anticipated trip to Florida to visit the Kennedy Space Center – that’s where Hayley’s childhood dream of becoming an astronaut truly blossomed. Sadly, her dreams were dashed a few short months later when she was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, or bone cancer.

Hayley and her family soon found themselves in Memphis, Tennessee at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital – one of the world’s premier pediatric cancer research centers.

Hayley Arceneaux Cancer Survivor

Bravery. Strength. Determination.

Young Hayley and her family spent nearly a year at St. Jude while undergoing a dozen rounds of chemo, countless surgeries, long hours of physical therapy and the addition of a new type of temporary prosthesis that replaced her left femur.

In 2003, shortly after her successful battle with cancer, Hayley was asked to be the featured speaker at the Louisiana Young Heroes Gala. She was spoke about what she wanted to be when she grew up and how her battle with cancer changed her view on life.

Children want to see their dreams.
I know I did, and I know I’m going to.
I want to be a nurse at St. Jude.

Dreams really can come true.

Since her cancer diagnosis in 2002, Hayley has been a St. Jude advocate and spokesperson – and feeding her dream of working as a St. Jude nurse. She wanted to be an inspiration for the countless children that pass through their doors – encouraging them to reach for the stars.

In 2014, Hayley graduated from Southeastern Louisiana University where she majored in spanish and minored in biology. In 2016, she graduated from physician assistant school at LSU Health Shreveport and began to realize her dream of working at St. Jude was within reach.

While she was in school, she applied to work at St. Jude, but didn’t get an interview. She knew she needed more experience. For three and a half years, Hayley specialized in emergency medicine before getting her dream job at St. Jude in April of 2020.

Hayley Arceneaux St. Jude