BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - A Baton Rouge student officials accepted his appointment to the United States Air Force Academy May 17 at the school’s 2019 graduation ceremony. Mark Coppola was a senior at the University Laboratory School.
Each year, more than 11,000 candidates apply for admission to the academy, with about 1,000 students gaining acceptance. Candidates are assessed based on academic achievements, athletic achievements, character and leadership potential.
U.S. Representative Garret Graves and U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy nominated Coppola was nominated. Retired U.S. Air Force Colonel Frank Arnemann presented Coppola with his appointment certificate at the graduation.
Throughout his time at ULS, Coppola earned a spot on the honor roll all four years of high school. He is a past recipient of the most outstanding student award, and in his senior year, earned the “Cub” award, an honor presented to a ULS senior who has demonstrated academic excellence and character throughout high school. He placed first at the regional level of the Young Author’s competition and placed third at the state level. He is also a member of the National Beta Honor Society, Student Council and Youth and Government Club.
Coppola is a four-year letterman on the UHS football team. He and his team won two state championships, while Coppola was named a first team all-state player in the process. He was also named a member of the 2018 fall sport all-state academic team.
Coppola is active in the Baton Rouge community as well. He has volunteered time coaching youth football, planting community gardens and tutoring younger students.
He will report to the U.S. Air Force Academy in June.