Teacher Feature: Mr. Tom Coyle

tom coyle
Allison Kostiuk

In February 2017, Mr. Tom Coyle, who was happily retired and enjoying extra time fishing and golfing, received a phone call from his daughter-in-law asking if he could fill in at OLMA as a substitute Theology teacher for a few days.  Never one to say no, Mr. Coyle agreed to help out. After all, a few days back in the classroom could be fun. Nearly four years later, Mr. Coyle is still here and beloved by all.  

While he admits to taking some ribbing from his friends who are still on the golf course, Mr. Coyle wouldn't have it any other way. "I love interacting with my students," he said. "They have kind and caring personalities and make every day a happy one for me." 

Mr. Coyle began his career in Linwood, teaching science, geography, and several other subjects to middle school students. While there, he also served as the Director of Athletics, coached basketball and track, and was named "Teacher of the Year" four times.  

When he retired from the public school system, Mr. Coyle began teaching World History and Sociology at St. Augustine Prep and was later named Director of College Guidance. Of course, he wasn't quite busy enough, so Mr. Coyle also coached basketball under St. Augustine's Paul Rodio. It's no wonder that he was Mrs. Coyle's first call when she needed a teacher mid-year. Mr. Coyle loves what he does, and it shows. 

What Mr. Coyle likes most so far this year is being back on campus. "We'd all like to be here full time, but this is a start," he said. He also loves following OLMA's athletic teams and is nearly always on the sidelines, often for multiple sports in a single day, taking photos that he posts on Instagram for all to enjoy.  

Mr. Coyle graduated from Dickinson State University in Dickinson, ND, with a BS degree in Education, but started out studying Mortuary Science. While he ended up teaching science instead, Mr. Coyle has done part-time work for various funeral directors over the years. 

Now for a few more little-known facts. While in college, Mr. Coyle was the starting catcher for the baseball team all four years and captain for three.  He was active in student government and his fraternity.  That experience served him well as Mr. Coyle was as an elected City Councilman in Absecon for 12 years. He is an avid fisherman, boating enthusiast, and golfer. Most of all, he's a gifted teacher with a heart of gold -- green and gold. 

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