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May graduate Baker to teach Latin at Monmouth-Roseville

Barry McNamara
06/06/2019
MONMOUTH, Ill. – A few months ago, the Latin program at Monmouth-Roseville High School was in jeopardy.

Thanks to a Monmouth College graduate, the distinguished program will be able to continue.

May graduate Maddie Baker of Galesburg, Ill., was recently hired to take charge of the program, which was in limbo after longtime Latin teacher Brian Tibbets moved out of the area late last year.

“I’ll be teaching Latin I through Latin IV, and also teaching some ESL classes,” said Baker, who graduated cum laude (and definitely knows what that means). “I don’t have my own classroom yet, so I’ll be a traveling teacher. I have my own little cart, and I’ll be traveling room-to-room.”

Baker said more than 50 students were enrolled in Monmouth-Roseville’s Latin classes in the past academic year. Now, those students will be able to continue their studies in a discipline that is credited for such things as helping them improve their English vocabulary and grammar and, through its exposure to ancient Roman culture, for giving them a strong foundation to explore other cultures.

Baker has always thought that teaching might be her calling, but when she first enrolled at Monmouth, she figured the subject would be math.

“But after I took Calculus III, I realized that math wasn’t for me,” she said. “I switched to a classics major, and the first language I studied was Greek. They told me that if I was thinking about being a teacher, I should take Latin classes, so here we are.”

Because Baker determined her academic direction a bit late in the game, she didn’t have time to add a major or minor in educational studies. While holding down her new job, she’ll work toward a master’s degree in teaching, most likely through online classes.