For the past two years, a dedicated and creative group of board members, faculty, and administrators have worked together to envision the future of boys’ education at Trinity-Pawling. Importantly, this visioning process included the creation of a new Mission Statement and Core Values for the School. This new mission is committed to growth, both for our students and for the School.
Trinity-Pawling School will provide an educational experience that makes a transformational difference in the lives of its students by enabling them to discover and pursue their distinctive gifts and talents.
Excellence • Character • Community • Curiosity
Despite its aspirational nature, the new mission captures nothing new about the Trinity-Pawling experience. Indeed, it is something that I hear from Trinity-Pawling alumni in almost identical words: “Not a day goes by that I don’t think about the difference Trinity-Pawling made in my life.”
We are excited about our future and the dynamic, forward-thinking initiatives that will help us make a transformational difference in the lives of our students. To learn more about the Strategic Vision for Trinity-Pawling, watch the State of the School Address webinar (presented on March 3, 2022) or visit our website.
William W. Taylor
In NESCAC basketball, Sam Peek ’18 needs no introduction. The senior guard from Wesleyan University dominated the top DIII league in the country this year, and his team’s success certainly followed. Wesleyan hosted the NESCAC tournament, sweeping the field for a conference title in front of 1,300 fans. Just before the tournament, Peek was named the league’s top player.
After a canceled season due to COVID, Wesleyan returned Peek along with a core of sophomore stars — now grown into senior form. “I knew I was the leader of the team,” Peek said. “Which was hard because I had to find the balance of being the man, but also being a team player to let other guys do their jobs.”
Peek had been part of a dynamic group since joining Trinity-Pawling. His senior teammates Nikkei Rutty ’18 (Monmouth), Beau Smith ’18 (Babson), and Korey Lee ’18 (Mercy) have continued to stay in touch throughout their collegiate playing careers.
Peek’s move from Poughkeepsie public school to Trinity-Pawling was challenging but prepared him to excel in the next chapter as an athlete and student. “The NEPSAC is super competitive — coming to T-P was a huge adjustment,” he said. “It was more physical, guys were more talented.” On the academic side, he explained, “Time management was huge — with free blocks at T-P, sometimes you got to hang out and sometimes you had to put in more effort to get some work done. It was the first time I had to set my own schedule, so I found the transition [to college] a lot smoother than some kids coming from public school.”
Now that his time at Wesleyan has come to an end — Wesleyan lost to RPI in the NCAA tournament — Peek is looking ahead to the next steps in his basketball career. Most athletes exit the tournament saying goodbye to their sport, but thanks to COVID, Peek has retained a year of eligibility. Peek took home First Team All-American honors, as announced by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) on March 16. He hopes to get some looks from Division I coaches for his final year of NCAA eligibility — prominent 6’5″ shooters who transferred D1 after dominating the NESCAC have ended up in the NBA. No matter where he lands, the Trinity-Pawling community will keep cheering on Peek from Pawling — Roll Pride!
by Cyrus Rothwell-Ferraris
As a prefect, Head Editor of The Phoenix, and a member of the Honor Council, National Honor Society, and Model United Nations, Francisco Bendezu knows a little something about leadership. Over the course of his years at Trinity-Pawling, Francisco has worked hard to be a stellar student, teammate, and school leader while making meaningful contributions to the campus community. “Being a student leader has made my senior year a bit more difficult, but also more enriching,” he began. “I’ve learned a lot about what I and others value in leaders, which is something that will certainly continue to be important as I move past T-P.” Now a senior just months away from graduation, Francisco looks back on the last four years with pride and gratitude, and looks forward to a very bright future at Princeton University.
Francisco’s Early Action commitment to Princeton has certainly been a highlight accomplishment of his senior year. “It’s an honor. A part of me still can’t really believe it,” he shared, reflecting on the impressive feat of attending an Ivy League school. “It’s very daunting but also very exciting. I’m looking forward to meeting the professors and students at Princeton, forming relationships, and pushing myself to greater heights.” He will major in comparative literature, with certificate degrees (minors) in creative writing and journalism.
Since Francisco’s freshman year at Trinity-Pawling, the avid writer and published author has shared his writing expertise with the School community through the student-run newspaper The Phoenix — an experience he has treasured.
In addition to developing his academic skills and writing style, Francisco is also thankful for the sense of community that Trinity-Pawling has offered over the years. “T-P has exposed me to a vibrant community that encompasses much more than academics. In that sense, the School has prepared me to tackle both college and life from a holistic perspective, which is definitely invaluable.”
Now as he embarks on his final Spring Term in the Pride, Francisco plans to make the most of the last few months on campus. “I’m really proud of the fact that I still push myself to be invested in the community. As a senior, it can be easy to lose motivation when it comes to giving back. I always hoped that I could be present and active and I’ve pushed myself to do that.” What is he most looking forward to for his senior spring? “Being with my closest friends for a few more weeks and everything that comes with the end of senior year. I can’t wait for things like paintball and mini-golf.”
And then it’s off to the Ivy League! Please join us in congratulating Francisco…we wish him all the best!
by Emma Christiantelli
When Rich Bello P’22 presented to the Leadership Institute at Trinity-Pawling earlier this month, he talked about the importance of creating “streaks” to achieve peak performance. He said strong leaders understand the value of cultivating “keystone habits” that inform other positive behaviors and ultimately lead to successful outcomes in our lives. Bello’s advice, if we veer off course: “Start a new streak.”
Five members of the Class of 2017 have established an impressive streak in support of their alma mater. In each of the five years since they graduated, Ronnie DiMaggio, Will Estony, Jordi Jefferson, Jack Makris, and Hunter Olstein have made a financial contribution to the Trinity-Pawling Fund. Two key indicators of a successful annual fund campaign are the percentage of alumni who contribute and the consistency with which they do so. We asked these young alumni about their motivation to give back.
“I contribute to the Trinity-Pawling Fund because T-P played an integral role in my personal and academic development and I hope my support can help future T-P brothers realize their potential,” said Jefferson. Jefferson is currently a senior at Hamilton College in Clinton, NY. He was recently named to the 2022 NESCAC Men’s Hockey All-Conference team.
“Even if it’s just a new bucket of baseballs for the JV baseball team, I’m happy to give to the Trinity-Pawling Fund in order to help current and future T-P students get as much or more out of Trinity-Pawling as I did,” said DiMaggio. “My closest friends, some of my fondest memories, invaluable college preparedness, a robust education, and countless general life skills (just this morning I taught a co-worker how to tie a tie!) all came from Trinity-Pawling.” DiMaggio graduated from Gettysburg College in May and is currently pursuing a career in the automotive industry as a product specialist with BMW.
Jack Makris was a student at Trinity-Pawling for six years and he was elected Head Prefect by his classmates and teachers. Makris’ legacy of giving to the Trinity-Pawling Fund began before he graduated, and he has not missed an opportunity to contribute every year since. Makris has just returned from a deployment in Kenya with the US Army National Guard.
Will Estony is a software developer from nearby Hopewell Junction, NY, who learned to code while he was a day student at Trinity-Pawling. “I felt very well-prepared for college and I’m very appreciative of the foundational skills I learned at T-P.” Estony also worked as a phone-a-thon volunteer in the Office of Advancement when he was a student, where he said he learned the importance of contributing to the Trinity-Pawling Fund. “I remember there was an emphasis on giving any amount. It was more about the relationships and making a connection.”
Hunter Olstein cites his appreciation for the faculty as the impetus for his generosity. “The Trinity-Pawling faculty inspires me to give back, as even after graduation they continue to stay involved in our lives. Their passion and commitment to the students are immeasurable.” Olstein works on documentary films as a production assistant and video editor. He has been living between Seattle, Washington D.C., and Colorado.
These gentlemen from the Class of 2017 are an inspiring example of the core values of Trinity-Pawling School. We are grateful to them for their generosity and proud of their accomplishments.
by John Newman
When Jen Grahn joined Trinity-Pawling’s Center for Learning Achievement in 2020, she brought with her a compassionate, open-minded, and student-centered approach to teaching. “Every student is unique and should be embraced for who they are. The students are my focus and I always want them to see my classroom as a safe place,” she shared. “It is my job to ensure that every student is learning and to help them overcome any challenges they may face.”
Jen currently teaches Reading Comprehension and Executive Skills in the Center for Learning Achievement (CLA). As both an educator and a parent, she recognizes the importance of placing students at the center of the learning experience. Teaching in the CLA, she said, allows her to do just that. “The small class sizes allow me to get to know each and every student and build a trusting relationship. It is so rewarding to see them grow and flourish throughout the school year.”
The CLA at Trinity-Pawling gives students the strategic support and skills they need to thrive, both academically and personally. Jen and her colleagues — an all-star team of educators — go above and beyond to prepare their students for success in college and life after Trinity-Pawling. Now in her second full year of teaching, Jen is grateful to be surrounded by such a supportive and collaborative team as they propel the CLA’s signature programs forward. “The CLA is a special place that I have been so lucky to be part of. We all work so well together to help the boys in the program. It has been amazing to see the growth of the students and the collaboration of our team.”
In addition to being a teacher, Jen is also a current parent at Trinity-Pawling. When it comes to the educational experience for her son Aidan ’24, it’s the student-centered nature of the School that continues to make all the difference. “The campus community is a nurturing environment that allows all the students and faculty to connect in so many ways. I love how every child is seen as an individual and given so many opportunities,” Jen concluded. “As a parent, I am so happy that my son is surrounded by such kindness and always held to high standards. As an educator, I am inspired by the leadership that goes into every day and which always has the student’s best interest at heart.”
Outside of the classroom, Jen enjoys hiking, skiing, biking, going to the beach, and adventuring with her four children. She lives locally in Pawling.
On behalf of the entire Trinity-Pawling community, we extend a heartfelt thank you to Jen for her ongoing dedication to the Center for Learning Achievement and Trinity-Pawling as a whole!
by Emma Christiantelli
Trinity-Pawling’s varsity soccer program has officially partnered with SoccerViza — Costa Rica’s independent professional player development program and training center. Starting in August 2022, each summer, the varsity team will participate in 10 days of preseason training in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca. Under the leadership of SoccerViza’s Head Coach Joe Funicello and his staff, the Pride will train twice a day, practicing with and competing against SoccerViza’s third division professional team. The team will also play six different games against other professional Costa Rican teams. When they are not training, the boys will have the opportunity to explore the beautiful sights of Costa Rica.
“This experience will be extraordinary for the boys,” shared Head Coach Sal Zani. “It will be great team bonding, as well as personal growth for them on and off the field. I’m super excited to see the development of the team going into the fall season.”
“Our coaches and staff have already begun planning for Trinity-Pawling’s preseason needs and we can’t wait to get started,” added Funicello of SoccerViza. “It will be great for them to practice in a professional environment as they prepare for the upcoming season.”
This exciting new partnership will allow Trinity-Pawling soccer players to train with some of the best soccer players and coaches in the game — while taking their own skills to the next level. Thank you to Coach Zani and everyone at SoccerViza for the incredible opportunity. Roll Pride!
To keep up with the soccer team this year, be sure to follow them on Instagram @trinitypawlingsoccer.
by Emma Christiantelli
Jersey boys hang together, and that bond only intensifies when both belong to the Trinity-Pawling brotherhood. Varsity hockey captain Tyler Fogu ’22 hails from Bayonne, New Jersey, and he learned of a HALT ALS fundraiser at Codey Arena in West Orange, New Jersey in November. “It was a hockey game with former NHL players, teammates, friends, and celebrities who all know Chris Tschupp ’90, and they came together to support his cause. I decided to create a similar event here at Trinity-Pawling this winter.” That evolved into Tyler’s Senior Independent Project. “Chris was a standout athlete at Trinity-Pawling and a fellow New Jersey guy, so I wanted to do whatever I could to help him out.”
Standout athlete indeed. Named an All-American prep school hockey player in 1990, the left-winger from Toms River, New Jersey was drafted to the Calgary Flames that same year. He delayed his professional hockey career for a few years to play at Notre Dame. However, the NHL lockout in 1994-95 altered his plans further, and Chris spent two years in the East Coast Hockey League.
What happened in 1996 is the stuff of fairy tales. Chris left hockey and spent the next 20 years as a world-famous model working for all the big names: Calvin Klein, Versace, Ralph Lauren, Armani, Rolex, Land Rover. The list goes on and on. Then came an acting career along with writing for television and film.
What happened in 2019 is the stuff of nightmares. Chris was diagnosed with ALS (aka Lou Gehrig’s disease); doctors gave him two to five years to live. But anyone who knows Chris Tschupp knows he’s a fighter, and he has spent the last three years battling the odds and fighting the as-yet incurable disease. He has committed to experimental therapies and is determined to raise awareness and funds to combat ALS.
Here on campus, Tyler Fogu reached out to the HALT ALS organization in early winter who helped him orchestrate an event held on Saturday, February 19, as the Trinity-Pawling icemen faced (and trounced) Hotchkiss. A number of Chris’s classmates showed up, including Pat Cook, Wayne Conlan, and Tommy Seitz. “Mr. Foster and Coach Gillman arranged for special red jerseys with ‘Tschupp’ on the back,” Tyler explained. “Our players wore the jerseys, and people could buy a jersey as well. HALT ALS staged a silent auction and had sports memorabilia for sale, with funds going to support the organization.”
“Before the puck drop, we wheeled Chris out onto the ice during the national anthem. He was really moved. During the game, we could see him smiling like crazy and giving us fist pumps. Chris and I have communicated through emails since the event, and he was really appreciative of what we did. I guess I’ve learned through Chris that you need to live each day like it’s your last.”
As for Chris Tschupp, he’s looking forward to returning to campus later this spring to attend a lacrosse game and mini-reunion organized by his brothers in the classes of 1990 and 1991. So if you see a smiling gentleman in a wheelchair proudly wearing his Trinity-Pawling gear, stop by and give him a fist bump. Whether you’re from the Garden State or not.
by Maria Buteux Reade
For more information about Chris Tschupp, or to donate to his cause, visit GoFundMe/Fight with Chris Tschupp to Halt ALS.
Kathryn and Ken Weeman ’59, P’91 cordially invite you to the Metropolitan Club for a reception celebrating Trinity-Pawling School. Join us to reconnect and share Trinity-Pawling’s vision for the future.
Washington, D.C. Reception
Thursday, May 5, 2022
Metropolitan Club, 1700 H Street NW, Washington, D.C.
The Metropolitan Club requires a jacket and tie for gentlemen and equal formal attire for ladies. All events are subject to change if forced by the response to COVID-19.
Questions? Reach Out.
If you have any questions about the 2022 Washington, D.C. Reception, specific needs, plans to bring additional guests, or should you have to cancel, please reach out to Associate Director of Alumni and Parent Relations John Newman via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 845-855-4831. We look forward to seeing you soon.
WINTER SPORTS WRAP-UP
Devon Diaco ’22 won New Englands — defeating the wrestler who beat him in the Western New England finals a week before in double OT — and was voted by coaches as the Most Outstanding Wrestler. This is the first Most Outstanding Wrestler at New England’s for Trinity-Pawling since Kyle Palmer in 2009. Congratulations to Devon Diaco! Kyle Lee ’22 also placed 5th in the New England tournament. Both Kyle and Devon also qualified for the National Prep Tournament. Kyle went 2-2 and Devon went 3-2. Both fell short of All-American placing but wrestled well throughout the tournament.
The varsity basketball team finished the season 10-6 in Class A competition, and 12-9 overall. Captains Nzube Mekkam ’22 (12.5 ppg, 3.2 rpg) and DeAndre Williams ’23 (16.3 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 4.5 apg) led the team through exciting home wins, challenging losses on the road, and an excellent showing despite falling to St. Sebastian’s in Needham, MA in the conference quarterfinals. Postgraduates Austin Williams and Sean Conroy contributed with consistent scoring and strong defense, bolstered by the rim defense of Mikkel Cintron ’22 who was the team’s blocks leader. The Pride also saw contributions from Bryan Lee ’23, Amadin Collete-Ighele ’23, Justin Umunakwe ’23, and future big-man Vincent Chaudhri ’25. The success of Coach Tarik Smith’s first year at the helm proved exciting for the School community, as they look towards returning stars and a ride to the playoffs once again.
The Trinity-Pawling JV basketball team completed a very successful season. Despite injuries and illnesses, the team ended with a 10-4 record. The Pride played with a focus on effort and defense throughout the season, and many of their wins came from pressure defense. Captains Matt Yamin ’22 and Garrett Backus ’23 showed leadership and skill throughout the season. Freshmen Jace Emerson, Gianni Fidanza, and Ryan Bellamy all made significant contributions throughout the season.
The Pride finished the season with a record of 8-16-1. There were many key victories for the Pride this season over highly competitive teams. Growing pains were a key reason for some of the struggles this year, as 20 out of the 26 players were new to prep hockey. The Pride will only graduate six players this May, so the team looks to build off this season with heavy contributors to the prep scene next year. The Pride found its stride in the middle of the season, downing St. Paul’s School to close out the 2021 calendar year. The Pride earned some key victories over challenging teams in the next stretch — defeating Kent, Lawrenceville, The Frederick Gunn School, and Hoosac. Down the final stretch of the season, the team played 8 games in 16 days. The final week of hockey for Trinity-Pawling saw big wins over Taft on the road, and Hotchkiss at home: an exciting 8-4 victory in a charity game honoring Chris Tschupp ’90, who is battling ALS. The lineup for the Pride saw many contribute to the score sheet, which looks promising for the years ahead. Seniors Dario Cantini (G), Michael Santonelli (D – 8 points), Gavin Bloder (F – 23 points), Justin Bello (F – 4 points), Captain Adam Franasiak (F – 2 points), and Captain Ryan Walker (F – 20 points) will be missed.
The JV hockey team concluded their season with a six-game winning streak to finish 9-3-1. As with all good hockey teams, success begins in the net where PJ Angotti ’24 and Marcelo Saviano ’24 split the duties. The two were quiet leaders and stout netminders, whose calm and consistent play anchored a talented defense. The defense was led by Michael Blaymires ’22 and Avery Ferraris ’24 who logged many minutes of even play while anchoring the man up and man down units. The Pride allowed over four goals only twice in thirteen games. Offensively, the Pride was led by Joe Porto ’22 and Milan Kumenah ’23, who were regular scorers and playmakers.
The top player for varsity squash was Jesus Fierro ’24 who played No. 1 all year. While he only won 2 matches, he played against some of the top players in New England tournament. Other notable players were Shun Shiraishi ’23, who won 2 matches as he advanced from No. 5 to No. 3 over the course of the year, and Francisco Bendezu ’22 who also won 2 matches, including the last match of his Trinity-Pawling career against Millbrook to end with a great statement. The squash team ended with a 1-14 record. At the New England tournament, the team was presented with the Sportsmanship Award, Congratulations gentlemen!
Peter Link ’22 and Nick Gimbel ’23 did a great job at the top of the JV ladder. Carson Sibilio ’23 was an awesome flex contributor who played anywhere from the No. 1 to the No. 4 for the Pride, and Brayden Lahey ’24 also showed a lot of improvement.
PRIDE ATHLETES TRAVEL TO FLORIDA
The Trinity-Pawling varsity lacrosse team landed on the Gulf Shore over Spring Break this month for a game against collegiate players at the University of Tampa. The boys had a great first game — they dropped the scrimmage 11-10, yet experienced some great learning moments along the way. Upon returning home, the team played Noble and Greenough School and showed their plans to dominate in New England this spring. Up 3-0 in the first quarter, the Pride extended their lead to 6-3 at halftime and won by a 13-7 final score. The defense played a great four quarters and the Pride saw goals from returning offensive stars Tucker Kellogg ’23, Brayden Lahey ’24, and PG Jake Likes ’22. The boys look forward to a slate of games against rugged Founders League competition.
The varsity baseball team also went south this month for a set of games and some outdoor practice. In the first game, the Pride handled John Carroll High School 17-2. Peter Link ’23 led the offense with 2 hits and reached base safely 4 times. Against Elev8 Academy, captain Nick Vega ’22 was 2 for 3 with two hard-hit balls, but the Pride lost 12-3. In a 7-6 win against The Hun School, Ryan Lorenzo ’22 reached base safely in all three at-bats in the leadoff spot, while also adding 2 innings of quality relief to earn the victory on the mound. Liam Haywood ’23 chipped in from the plate with 2 hits and 2 RBIs in the tight win. The Pride opens the regular season on March 30 against The Frederick Gunn School.
At Trinity-Pawling, we are committed to the School’s mission: To provide an educational experience that makes a transformational difference in the lives of its students by enabling them to discover and pursue their distinctive gifts and talents. The holistic, student-centered nature of the Trinity-Pawling community was purpose-built to prepare students for the 21st century and lifelong learning. Our work environment is one that values character traits such as perseverance, effort, zest, resilience, global awareness, and learned optimism — we invite you to join us!
Here are a few reasons you will love working here:
• You will have an opportunity to be part of the next-generation school for boys.
• You will spend each day in a role that gives you multiple opportunities to challenge yourself, helping you to grow and develop in a myriad of ways.
• You can grow and develop professionally (tuition assistance, conferences, seminars, training, mentorship program, and more!).
• You can be creative! Incorporate your gifts and talents in and out of the classroom to enhance the educational experience.
To learn more about our open positions, please visit the Careers section of our website.
Trinity-Pawling School has a proud tradition of unlocking the gifts and talents within students through a transformational learning experience.
UNLOCK academic curiosity in the classroom.
UNLOCK artistic excellence in the studio and on stage.
UNLOCK character through athletic competition.
UNLOCK a student’s connection to his community.
On Tuesday, May 3, 2022, make a gift to Trinity-Pawling School and help students discover and pursue their passions!
• Online: www.trinitypawling.org/unlocking-gifts
• Venmo: @TrinityPawlingSchool
• Phone: 845-855-4830
Can’t wait to join in? Give today! We will still count your gift towards the giving day.
What did Trinity-Pawling unlock for you?