Long Live Latin: Claire Bishop Earns Manson A. Stewart Teacher Training Award


By Ellyce Loveless

Claire Bishop, a University of Kentucky graduate student in Classics who is also working towards her Masters in Teaching a World Language, was named as a winner for the 2013 Manson A. Stewart Teacher Training Award. This award is designed by the Classical Association of the Middle West and South to give financial aid to those hoping to teach Latin at the primary through the secondary level. The award is a great honor for Bishop, the Classics department, and the university.

Originally from Louisville, Bishop graduated with an undergraduate degree in Classics from UK. She continued her education here in order to participate in the Institute for Latin Studies developed by Drs. Terence Tunberg and Milena Minkova. The program reinforces a speaker’s ability in Latin through active, daily use.

 “We read and discuss texts in Latin,” said Bishop. “These courses have greatly increased my ability to understand texts from across the entire Latin tradition, and I know these skills will make me a much better teacher.”

She hopes one day to train her own students in the course of Latin throughout the centuries. “High school Latin,” she began. “Can often be a romp through narratives about togas and country villas culminating in a dose of Vergil.” She plans to teach her students not only well-studied authors like Vergil, but all kinds of work, “from ancient to medieval to Neo-Latin” pieces. She gets this inspiration from the faculty in the Classics department at UK, who research and teach texts from the entire Latin literary collection.

“I have been exposed to the rich patrimony of the Latin language in my courses here and have come to better understand its role in Western Civilization,” she said. “Ancient texts go hand in hand with works like Thomas More’s Utopia and Sepulveda’s De Orbe Novo. The Pope even tweets in Latin! [The language] is anything but dead.”

Bishop will graduate with both of her degrees in May 2014 and hopes to become a high school Latin teacher soon after that.

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