Moutarou Diallo - Upper School World Languages Teacher - JV Girls Soccer Assistant Coach - About - McDonogh School

Moutarou Diallo, Upper School World Languages Teacher, JV Girls Soccer Assistant Coach

Photographer: Will Hardin ’25

What inspired you to become a teacher?

I would say teaching came to me by accident. I never intended to be a teacher, but fate guided me to teaching. After college, I didn't have anything else to do since finding work in Senegal was not a cup of coffee or tea. Since I spoke fairly good English, I decided to go back to my hometown to find a job related to using English. There were many American non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in my hometown. I was contacted by an NGO that does work in sustainable development. I was then taught to become a trainer. My role was to facilitate the teaching of human rights in the rural areas around my hometown to help them solve their problems linked to lack of knowledge of their basic human rights. Once they had acquired their rights through the program, I would help them draw up action plans for sustainable development projects. Then, the following year, I was hired by the Peace Corps Training Center to teach local languages and French. I was again trained to be a language instructor. Three years later, I was hired by a study abroad program to teach French and local languages (Wolof). Since then, I've been teaching French, Wolof, and Fulani, and it's been 24 years now. 

Why did you choose the subject area that you teach?

I chose French, Wolof, and Fulani because they are the languages I grew up with, and also because there is a huge demand in my country. Senegal is a melting pot of countries, so it is easy to see people from every country around the world living and working or even visiting. People there are in constant need of language learning. It was very profitable for me to teach these languages because of the high demand. 

What do you find most rewarding about teaching and working with students?

It is rewarding when I see people I’ve taught be able to communicate with me in the language. Teaching a language is also a way to connect with people. I am very thankful to be able to connect with people around the world through teaching them my languages. I’ve made connections everywhere; I know someone in almost every country around the world, thanks to teaching languages. 

Do you have a favorite place on campus? What makes it your favorite? 

I love Roots Farm. I like being there with my students and cooking something related to the Francophone world. 

Beyond the classroom, what are some of your interests or hobbies that you’re passionate about?

I like meeting people, helping people, connecting with new people, and traveling to new places. One thing that I am very passionate about is going to Senegal and building schools in rural areas. I also like to take people to Senegal to have them learn about my culture and use it in a good way in their daily lives.