Hailey Elise Yaffee

Master of Fine Arts in Dance: Creative Practice


Graduating With Honors
School of Liberal Arts Dean's Award


Kelseyville, CA

Award Bio

Hailey Yaffee earned her MFA in Dance: Creative Practice while working full-time with the SMC IT Services Department and Ace Dance Academy. Her thesis research explores Catholicism's impact on the female body and extreme facial expressivity, in choreography, to convey the cognitive dissonance between religious ideals and real life. SMC's liberal arts and Lasallian foundation have forever touched her life.

While earning my degree, my greatest supporters were

My amazing husband, Bahi.
My parents, sister and in-laws.
My co-workers and bosses from both SMC’s IT department and Ace Dance Academy.
The SMC Dance staff, faculty and past/present cohorts.
My dancers: Catalina O'Connor, Marissa Pfaff and Zoë Swanson.

My favorite SMC memory is

Collaborating with my dancers, presenting my choreography and receiving feedback from my professors and fellow classmates. Thanks to them, I have grown so much intellectually, spiritually and artistically.

I'm looking forward to most

NO homework. Putting my artistry to work outside of the classroom. Spending more time with my family. I am truly excited for what the future holds.
“We may also name the dance through its power to reflect the substance of life. That is, we may see that it signifies our embodiment, our life as a whole. All dance carries this signifying power in its constitution, since it is never divorced from its lived ground”
— Sondra Fraleigh