Dr. Clark Makes His Mark

Dr. Clark, STA Latin teacher, discusses his reasons for teaching and his hobbies outside of teaching.


by Isabel Glover, Staff Writer

Why did you decide to teach at St Teresa’s Academy? 

I started teaching at St. Teresa’s Academy because I have learned from teaching at universities that women take school more seriously. A position opened up at STA and I thought, ‘that’s where I belong with the serious students who want to learn,’ and guess what, I have amazing students. I get through so much, it’s unbelievable.


What courses do you teach?

I’m a linguist and a linguistics teacher who uses Latin to teach linguistics. Latin and Greek just happen to be the basis of most academic terminology for the English language.


How do you approach teaching at an all-girls school?

Every single day, I come in as I come in, defeated and the students build me back up. And then I wait the next day to do the same thing. And it’s amazing. I mean, I wouldn’t be anywhere else.


What led you to become a teacher?

When I went away to graduate school, I was part of the PhD Program at the University of Florida, where they pay for all your credits, and give you money, but you have to teach. So it was part of my PhD that I taught Latin. I continued teaching because all of the stresses of grad school were alleviated by the pleasures of teaching. I teach because language is actually how you will accomplish virtually every single goal in your entire life.


Why do you love teaching Latin?

 I could put a seven-syllable word on the board, and my Latin IV class can take it apart and tell you what every single piece means. That’s incredible. That sensation is incredible. I didn’t give that to the students. We learned a lot together, I was the teacher; they were the students and we went on this journey together. The fact that I was able to be with them as they got there is a feeling you can’t even understand.


How have you made an impact on others while teaching?

Iris Roddy, valedictorian, (Class of 2022) happened to mention me in her speech last year. I got mentioned in the valedictorian speech, how lucky and cool? Or I think, how did I come from where I come from? I end up being a valuable enough addition to her life that I made it into her speech. And that’s not about me. It’s about that life that offered me that experience that I got to be a part of it.


Besides teaching, what other things do you enjoy doing?

I love to cook, read and write. I’m currently plotting out a series of fantasy novels. I’m working on creating languages, names and city names for my series. I read poetry and have been doing that for years. I started writing terrible poetry, and I am currently writing…let’s say decent poetry. I like to cook; I don’t eat meat at all. I cook a lot of vegetables and grains. I am very interested in spices and how to combine spices. I really like to draw and I draw for my seniors. I ask them what cartoon character meant a lot to them as a kid and I give a drawing to them. I did about 17 last year, and will probably do more this year. I like music. I don’t play any instruments, but I’m trying. I like watching good films, when I have time.