Tom Coppola ’01 named 25th principal of Canisius High School

CHS Staff

 

Tom Coppola ’01, a Canisius graduate who has spent the last 14 years at the school as an administrator and faculty member, has been named principal and executive vice president for academics at Canisius High School, Canisius President Fr. David S. Ciancimino, S.J., announced Thursday morning.

Coppola has been the Dean of Students at Canisius for the last eight years. He is the 25th principal in the history of the 152-year-old institution.

Since 2020, Coppola has also been the school’s COVID-19 lead, responsible for overseeing adherence with state protocols and for the reopening plan which has seen Canisius open for in-person instruction for the past two school years.

“Tom is a very positive, enthusiastic leader who has great ideas for Canisius High School and its future,” said Ciancimino, “and certainly Canisius is in his heart and in his soul.

“He's been a clear leader the last eight years as Dean. He has had to make challenging decisions, all while making sure to put the care of the student first. He’s had to make hard decisions – and he’s capable of making them – but he always has the concerns of the person in front of him at heart.

“Tom is a discerning person who is deeply committed to our Jesuit traditions. His professional roles and personal experiences make him uniquely qualified to be our next principal.”

“I am excited and humbled for the opportunity to lead my alma mater, and I am grateful for the trust that Fr. Ciancimino has placed in me,” Coppola said.

“Canisius High School’s foundation is steeped in the values of the Society of Jesus. My passion for Jesuit education, coupled with the outstanding work of a most talented faculty and staff, create a dynamic and creative school that will continue to deliver exceptional college preparatory, Catholic and Jesuit education to the next generation.”

Coppola, who was hired as a history teacher in 2008, will begin his new role July 1.

Andrea Tyrpak-Endres, in her eighth year as principal at Canisius, announced in October 2021 that she would conclude her tenure as principal at the end of the 2021-22 academic year. Tyrpak-Endres will continue to teach religion at Canisius, which she has done for more than 35 years, and work with the CHS House System.

“I am thankful for the mentorship that Andrea has provided me, and I am grateful that she will continue to serve our community as a faculty member,” Coppola said. “For decades, Andrea has been a master teacher and we are blessed to have her continue in the classroom.”

As Dean, Coppola has been part of the administration, working closely with the president and principal. Coppola has collaborated with the principal to develop policy, manage complex situations and enhance student experiences. He has also worked with the faculty to create and maintain co-curricular programs.

“My philosophy on leadership in education is steeped in the tenets of Jesuit schools, and centers on meeting students where they are and deeply caring for each individual whom I encounter,” Coppola said. “When we understand the context from which our students come and connect with the person he is, we can then create an authentic environment for educational excellence.

“Valuing people creates an environment where all are encouraged to contribute their talents, abilities, and hearts to the noble mission of education.”

Coppola is a graduate of Fredonia State, where he majored in history and adolescent education. He earned a master’s degree in organizational leadership from Medaille College.

Coppola has held a variety of essential leadership positions at Canisius, including Director of Student Activities from 2011 to 2014.

As a history teacher, he was the chairperson of the CHS Faculty Senate for two years, representing the faculty to the school administration. He has been the director of the school’s summer programs and workshops, including the Higher Achievement Program, since 2012.

He has been active with campus ministry throughout his tenure as a leader of student retreats and service opportunities. He has made the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius Loyola – a retreat experience that lies at the heart of Jesuit spirituality. He is a trained retreat director in Ignatian spirituality.

He has been a part of the school’s athletic success during his entire career at Canisius as a football and baseball coach. Since 2011, he has been an assistant varsity football coach for the Crusaders.

Coppola has also been a member of the Board of Directors of Catholic Academy of West Buffalo since 2013.

Coppola was selected from an impressive field of candidates following a national search. The search committee met with seven finalists for the position. The finalists were from throughout the country, and all had very significant experience in Jesuit education.

Tom Coppola ’01 named 25th principal of Canisius High School

Tom Coppola ’01, a Canisius graduate who has spent the last 14 years at the school as an administrator and faculty member, has been named principal and executive vice president for academics at Canisius High School, Canisius President Fr. David S. Ciancimino, S.J., announced Thursday morning.

Coppola has been the Dean of Students at Canisius for the last eight years. He is the 25th principal in the history of the 152-year-old institution.

“Tom is a very positive, enthusiastic leader who has great ideas for Canisius High School and its future,” said Ciancimino, “and certainly Canisius is in his heart and in his soul."

Kraig Kurzanski ’84 named Canisius High School head football coach

Kraig Kurzanski ’84 is coming home.

Kurzanski, a member of the Canisius High School Athletic Hall of Fame who has been one of Western New York’s most successful high school football coaches over the last three decades, has been named the Crusaders’ head football coach, Canisius Director of Athletics James Mauro announced Tuesday morning.

Support Canisius for the holidays via the CHSPA Poinsettia & Wreath Sale

Beautify your home this holiday season and support Canisius High School programs at the same time. 

The Canisius High School Parents Association's annual Holiday Poinsettia & Wreath Sale continues through Monday.

Locally grown poinsettia plants and hand-made holiday wreaths are available for purchase, with all proceeds going to CHS Campus Ministry programs. 

A Power Play for Others: Three CHS grads skating in marathon hockey game

On Sunday, 40 people will attempt to play hockey in downtown Buffalo for 11 straight days, raising money to fight cancer as part of the fifth edition of the 11-Day Power Play. 

Not surprisingly, three of those literally living in the rink will be “Men for Others.” 

Three Canisius High School graduates will be on the ice for up to 10 hours a day, around the clock, from start to finish: Peter Merlo ’88 and Michael Meade ’87 will play while Mark Paradowski ’99 will be one of three officials skating regular shifts, just like the players. When they’re not part of the game, they’ll be sleeping on temporary beds a few steps from the rink at Buffalo Riverworks.

Eight CHS student-athletes commit to colleges, and say thanks

Eight Canisius High School seniors formally announced their college choices Wednesday in the Canisius High School Brady Conference Room. Each student-athlete also paid tribute to those who helped them throughout their career.

The group included four lacrosse players, three baseball players and a swimmer.

For the 2020-21 school year, 10% of the Canisius High senior class committed to play collegiate athletics; the national average is less than 2%. More signings will be announced throughout the school year. 

Drive-thru food drive at Canisius on Saturday morning  

Western New Yorkers will be lining up at a different kind of drive-thru Saturday as Canisius High School collects donations of food for those in need this holiday season.

The public is encouraged to donate non-perishable food items from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 6 at the school at 1180 Delaware Ave.

All donations will benefit St. Luke’s Mission of Mercy, which cares for the poor and abandoned in Western New York. Soon after food is donated on Delaware Ave. on Saturday morning, Canisius student and staff volunteers will transport the items to St. Luke’s on Walden Ave.

Great Ignatian Challenge food drive kicks off at Canisius on Tuesday

A food drive which aims to collect tons of provisions for Buffalonians in need will kick off Tuesday at Canisius.

The Great Ignatian Challenge, in which Canisius participates in a friendly – but spirited – competition with other Jesuit high schools across the Northeast to provide food to the needy for the holiday season, will be held from Tuesday, Oct. 26 to Friday, Nov. 19. 

Food collected by Canisius during the drive will go to St. Luke's Mission of Mercy. Non-perishable food can be donated at CHS on school days (8 a.m. to 3 p.m.). 

Canisius will also be hosting a drive-thru food drop-off event from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 6. 

Tyrpak-Endres to conclude her tenure as Canisius principal 

Andrea Tyrpak-Endres, who is in her eighth year as principal and executive vice president for academics at Canisius High School, has decided to conclude her tenure as principal at the end of the 2021-22 academic year, Canisius President Fr. David S. Ciancimino, S.J., announced Friday morning. 

Tyrpak-Endres, the first female principal in the 151-year history of Canisius, will continue to teach religion at the school.

Tyrpak-Endres has taught for more than 35 years at Canisius, including throughout her tenure as principal.

"I am grateful for Andrea, her dedication to our mission and her care for our Canisius High School community," said Ciancimino. 

Luke LoTempio '22 named National Merit Scholarship semifinalist

Luke LoTempio '22 has been named a National Merit Scholarship semifinalist. 

The semifinalists were announced Wednesday by the National Merit Scholarship Company, and the 16,000 who are being honored represent less than 1 percent of U.S. high school seniors.  

"Being selected as a semi-finalist in the National Merit Scholarship Program is a reflection of the effort I have put into my work," said LoTempio. "It reminds me to continue to do my best."

Dr. Renier Brentjens '85 named Roswell Park deputy director, chair of medicine

Dr. Renier Brentjens '85 has come back to Buffalo for "the opportunity of a lifetime." 

Brentjens has been named the Deputy Director and Chair of Medicine at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Roswell Park describes Brentjens as "one of the most influential and accomplished figures in the field of cancer immunotherapy."

Matthew Cady named Canisius cross country/track coach

Matthew Cady is joining Canisius High School as the new head coach for cross country, indoor track and outdoor track.

Cady brings a wealth of academic and athletic experience to Canisius, where he will also be a physical education and health teacher.

Cady, who has a doctorate from Penn State, competed at Syracuse University in both cross country and track for four years before going on to coach both sports at the University of Pittsburgh for two years.