Tag Archives: International Trade and Marketing

BUSINESS STUDENT SPINS THREE TIMES IN THE AIR, WINS GOLD

FIT is home to talent of many stripes. One such stripe, apparently, is figure skating. Kevin Coppola, International Trade and Marketing ’13, took home first prize at the U.S. Figure Skating Collegiate Championships in August.

Hue is doing triple axels in the office.

Kevin Coppola, figure skating champion

Kevin Coppola skates for the win. Hue wishes more people had come to watch.

Coppola skated two programs, one to the music from Requiem for a Dream, the other to Children of Dune. His total score was 113.42, light years ahead of the second place senior man, who earned a 78.99.

The numbers are equally impressive on the academic side: he’s a Presidential Scholar with a stellar GPA.

He’s been skating since he was five, though he retired in high school after fracturing his hip bone. He shed his Olympic dreams and focused on his academics.

“If you get hurt and take time off, there’s no way to catch up again,” he says.

Like Cher and Michael Jordan, however, he didn’t stay retired for long: When he came to FIT, he decided to give skating a go once more.

“At first I thought I was going to be fine with moving on,” he says. “But I felt like I wasn’t finished with it yet.”

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YouTube Direkt (This is Coppola’s long program, set to the Children of Dune soundtrack. Skip ahead to 00:50 to see the beginning.)

These days, he wakes up at 5 am four days a week and buses an hour out to Hackensack to practice for three hours. On the weekends, he coaches kids to help pay for school.

Already he can land four triple jumps: the triple Salchow, triple toe loop, triple loop, and triple flip. He’s working on his triple lutz. The famed triple axel, which is actually 3.5 turns, isn’t in the cards right now.

“To learn triples, one jump can take up to a year,” he says. “It’s really a lot of practice.”

PHOTOGRAPHY ALUMNA LEAVES ZERO CHILDREN BEHIND

Most FIT grads are snapped up by the industry soon after commencement, and sometimes well before. But not everyone straps on the nine-to-five harness so quickly. Caitie McCabe, Photography ’10, enrolled in City Year and spent the year in Baton Rouge, LA, helping at-risk kids graduate the eighth grade.

McCabe, who photographed the International Trade and Marketing practicum in India for the summer 2012 issue of Hue, worked as a tutor and mentor in English and Math for sixth through eighth grade. “My entire job was to care about these kids,” she says.

A red badge of courage. Photo by Caitie McCabe '10.

Unfortunately, No Child Left Behind leaves behind lots of children who don’t pass the standardized tests after fourth and eighth grades. Some kids (and their parents) don’t grasp its importance. Others are sick on test day. Still more get stuck with a lousy teacher that year, or have an undiagnosed learning disability. And because of Hurricane Katrina, an entire class of students wasn’t tested for disabilities, and many student files were lost. “Then you have a kid who’s 16 or 17 and in eighth grade, and high school and college seem further and further away.”

Pregnancy is also a threat to high-school graduation. McCabe says that most of the school districts don’t teach sex ed, and MTV’s 16 and Pregnant glamorizes teenage pregnancy.

Students leaving school with a TGIF skip to their step. Photo by Caitie McCabe '10.

The work wasn’t easy. Originally 10 volunteers worked at the school. By the end of the year, that number had been whittled to four. The team leader quit from loneliness. Another tutor took at job at the local fire department.

Most City Year volunteers, she says, do it as a resume-builder for graduate school. McCabe did it partly to see if she wanted to become a teacher. She was thrilled to see that all of her eighth graders graduated–but she found that teaching wasn’t for her.

Considering what she went through, Hue is not surprised.