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2 students earn gold on National Latin Exam

2 students earn gold on National Latin Exam

Two Wilbraham & Monson Academy students took the National Latin Exam, and two students finished with gold medals.

Make that, II gold medals.

Michelle Itkin ’22 and Arielle Chechile ’24 finished at the highest level among the students who took the 2021 Latin exam in February.

Michelle tested her skills on the Advanced Latin Prose Exam, while Arielle tackled the Intermediate Latin Exam.


WMA Latin teacher Don Kelly on Michelle’s ability as a Latin student: “Michelle has always been a diligent and hard-working student in all of her courses. This diligence and consistency have gained for her a very good command of the corpus of Latin grammar and vocabulary. Next year she will be able to take AP Latin and can use her skills in reading and appreciating two great works of Western literature, Caesar's “Gallic Wars” and Vergil's “Aeneid.”

Mr. Kelly regarding Arielle’s talents as a Latin student: “Although only a ninth grader, Arielle entered our Latin program with the background and ability to do Honors Latin 3. Arielle was always meticulous in her class preparation, and the results speak for themselves: grades in the ‘A’ range and a gold medal on the National Latin Examination.”

Michelle regarding her experience taking Latin at the Academy: “I’m really proud to have won a Gold Medal on the exam this year. I’ve improved every year since I was a freshman, and with Mr. Kelly’s guidance I’ve finally made it here. Latin is one of my favorite classes at WMA because of how niche a topic it is: not everyone can say that they can translate the original texts of famous Roman poems and speeches by emperors, all while criticizing the faults of the authors themselves. It’s a whole new way to look at that era of history.”

Arielle on what she likes about Latin: “Latin is such an essential yet underappreciated language and class. It forms the basis of so many modern languages, so that even if it is a dead language it is still vital to learn.”