Mario Morales, a junior at the University of Rochester, was recently named the recipient of the 2010 Minority Scholarship in Classics and Classical Archaeology. Given jointly by the American Philological Association and the Archaeological Institute of America, the scholarship was established to provide students with funding for research either in the United States or abroad.
Morales, a classics and history double major with a focus on European history and Latin, is the first Rochester student to receive this award. He will use his scholarship to study Latin under the tutelage of the Rev. Reginald Foster, a noted Latinist who is known for his work in the Latin Letters office at the Vatican. Morales will travel to Milwaukee, Wis., where Father Foster currently resides.
"I'm hoping this intense study of Latin will sharpen my translation skills and increase my understanding of conversational Latin," said Morales. While in Milwaukee, he will participate in a six-week program that includes an in-depth study of literature, poetry, and church or conversational Latin.
Morales possess a deep passion for the mastery of language. Fluent in Spanish and English, he also has studied Greek, German, Arabic, and Russian. He enrolled in Rochester's Guaranteed Rochester Accelerated Degree in Education program (GRADE), which provides him the opportunity to study at the University's Warner School of Education upon completion of his bachelor's degree. Morales plans to obtain a master's degree in education science with the goal of a teaching classical linguistics and conducting research.
During his career at Rochester, Morales, a native of San Juan, Puerto Rico, has been an active member of the Thelion Society, the University's quiz bowl team. He is the president of Eta Sigma Phi, which is the University's Classics Honor Society, and is the vice president for the Undergraduate Religion and Classics Council. A perennial member of the Dean's List, Morales received the 2008 German Book Prize, given by faculty members in the Modern Languages and Cultures department.
Founded in 1994, the Minority Scholarship provides undergraduate students who demonstrate serious interest in the archaeology or classical languages with funding to advance their study of archaeology or classical language. Twenty-one students have been chosen for the scholarship.