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Sandia Senior Has Deep Love of Politics

By Amy Miller
Journal Staff Writer
    Sandia High's student body president, Eric Layer, doesn't know where he got his love of politics.
    Neither of his parents are political junkies, the 17-year-old said, but he's always been a leader.
    It started in elementary school when he would take charge of group projects, Layer said. In middle school, he headed a project that raised more than $7,000 for the homeless.
    Last year, he was Sandia's junior class president, and his toughest task may have been organizing the prom.
    "That was a whole lot of work," Layer said. "Everyone thinks it's no big deal."
    As Sandia's student body president this year, he runs 6:30 a.m. meetings with about 120 student council members twice a week. They plan community service projects and school events.
    "I absolutely love Sandia, and it's really meant a lot to me," Layer said. "I want to give something back and help out the school that's done so much for me."
    Layer spoke so articulately about Sandia High at a recent school board meeting that he's become a student spokesman for the school district, giving speeches to city councilors or the Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce.
    Layer said eventually, he wants to make a career of politics, after he graduates from either New Mexico State University or Texas Christian University.
    "Eric obviously has a lot of talents," Sandia High Principal Michael Bachicha said. "But his integrity and his conscientious heart set him apart. I think he really does have a big heart."