On Saturday October 12th at the University of Detroit Jesuit High School, the 125th anniversary meeting of the Michigan Classical Conference (MCC) was held. The meeting was organized by past presidents, Nicholas Young, (Wayne Statae University alumnus, B.A., M.A.) and Michele Valerie Ronnick (Wayne State University professor, Department of Classical and Modern Languages, Literatures and Cultures). The meeting was well attended with students and faculty from Wayne State, Michigan State, University of Michigan and staff from several secondary schools from as far away as Grand Rapids. We are delighted to tell you that we just received formal congratulations from Mayor Mike Duggan for our work.
The MCC is one of the oldest state based organizations in the United States that supports the study of ancient languages. In Michigan the very first meeting of teachers of any subject took place in Detroit on January 3-5, 1838 when a group called the ‘Michigan Literary Institute’ came together. Various other groups came and went. There was the short-lived Michigan State Educational Society (1847-1850), followed by the Michigan State Teachers Association founded in 1852. In 1886 the Michigan Schoolmasters Club (MSC) formed after 19 educators met to explore the idea of an association at the Cook Hotel in Ann Arbor. Eight papers were given at its first meeting. The following year on February 19, 1887 a mix of papers including these: ‘The Editing of Classical Text,’ ‘The Educational Value of Greek,’ was presented. At the sixth meeting held on February 19, 1888 the value of supporting the American School for Classical Studies in Athens was discussed. From 1890 to 1894 papers on various classical topics were given. At some point during 1894 the MSC created four special subject areas: The Classical Conference, the English & Modern Language Conference, the Math & Science Conference and the History Conference. And thus was the MCC born! During the early years many luminaries were participants including University of Michigan’s President James B. Angell and President Andrew West of Princeton University. Many accomplished scholars and teachers in Michigan have served as our president since then.
MCC President Ruth Scodel Cuts the Cake
Reed DeMarco, our MCC treasurer and Latin teacher at Brother Rice HS, Bloomfield Hills, MI