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WMA wins 18 awards on National Latin Exam

Is there anyone more qualified to connect culture, religious beliefs and ethics from two thousand years ago to that of today more than Wilbraham & Monson Academy’s Don Kelly?

Once again, this year’s Latin students proved Mr. Kelly’s expertise as 18 (of 28) earned awards on this year’s National Latin Exam, including five scoring at the Gold Medal level.

“In studying Latin at WMA students have the opportunity to travel back in time to the first century CE and examine how different peoples, united under one government, lived together,” explained Mr. Kelly, who has taught Latin at the Academy for more than 45 years. “The student can see that many of the problems and issues of the Roman experience are still with us today. Latin is intrinsically interesting to anyone who likes people, ideas, words, the past or the study of how society works.

“Through Latin students gain insights into the basic elements of western European civilization and of some other societies by examining language, literature, law, attitudes toward religion, philosophy, ethics, art, architecture, civil engineering and technology, and political science.”

Quotes from students who earned Gold Medals on this year’s National Latin Exam:

Guglielmo Catalano ’23: "This exam challenged my Latin knowledge and the skills that I have acquired over the past years. It is a great recognition of the hard work that I've dedicated to Latin studies in my Italian high school, as well as here at WMA with Mr. Kelly. I am really honored to be awarded for my achievements and I'll definitely continue pushing myself to reach even greater accomplishments in the future."

Federico Felli ’23: "Having Mr. Kelly as a teacher was wonderful. He had a vital role in my success. He prepared me using last year's practice test and showing me both where I made mistakes and how to correct them." 

David Prickett ’23: “I was really glad to win the gold medal because I’ve worked hard in Latin for four years, and this year is my first medal. I think it’s a nice way to end my high school Latin career. I originally wanted to take Latin because I thought it was an interesting language and that it would help with my English skills in writing and tests. I like learning the history of important figures and poets, and how Roman history affected their writing.”

Ryan Cooley ’26: “Winning this award was a great honor for me as it allowed me to be recognized for all of the hard work that I have put into Latin over the last few years. I originally wanted to take Latin because of how it teaches you to think about language in a very different way from how we learn it as English speakers. It is a very detail and grammatically-oriented language, and I think that learning to understand this has had great effects on my writing skills and understanding of grammar and vocabulary.”


WMA results: National Latin Exam 2023


Gold Medals and Summa Cum Laude Certificates

Guglielmo Catalano ’23

Ryan Cooley ’26

Federico Felli ’23

Margherita Negri ’23

David Prickett ’23


Silver Medals and Maxima Cum Laude Certificates

Ha Anh Nguyen ’25

Avery Kay ’26


Magna Cum Laude Certificates

Jack Austin ’25

Drew Habermeier ’23

Philip Tikhonov ’24

Guo Yin ’23


Cum Laude Certificates

Julia Choi ’26

Korbin Dixon ’24

Jessica Ethier ’23

Margaret Gately ’23

Grace Kim ’25

Connor Oelerking ’24

Yougun Yang ’25


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