Chariots of Fire: JCL attends annual convention


JCL and Latin students participate in the Spirit Competition at the CAJCL convention. Credit: Mercedes Barletta

Tanisha Gunby

Thirty Latin students and members of the Junior Classical League from both campuses participated in intellectual, athletic and artistic activities in the California JCL Convention at Miramonte High School in Orinda, California, from March 29-31.

The conference featured events including chariot racing, art competitions and Certamen for students and teachers.  Certamen is a quiz bowl with questions pertaining to Latin such as Roman culture, geography, history, grammar and translations.

“I most enjoyed participating in certamen, because it felt very rewarding every time we won or I got a hard question right,” Nicole Austen ’21 said. “I also loved hanging out with other Latin lovers and playing games.”

Also, CAJCL Parliamentarian Ben Beckman ’19 and CAJCL Historian Taia Cheng ’19 won the Lura A. Wallace and Paul E. Shickle California Junior Classical League 2018 – 2019 Scholarship for $2,000.  In addition to serving on the CAJCL State Board this year, Beckman and Cheng helped plan and run the event.

Among other academic and chariot racing awards received, the Upper School and Middle School both won second place in the overall CAJCL school award. The HS-Advanced Certamen team reached semi-finals and the HS-III Certamen won second place. The MS-II Certamen team and MS-III Certamen team were awarded first place. The school also won the high school and middle school Spirit Competitions.

Cheng said she loved her last JCL Convention and met new people who share the same interest in Classics.

“It was definitely the best one because I realized it was my last convention, and I was truly able to savor the moment and make more beautiful memories with all of my friends in JCL,” Cheng said. “I was feeling very nostalgic, but also euphoric the whole weekend. I am really going to miss the phenomenal community of the Junior Classical League.”