Alessandra Baldetti of Islola d’Elba, Italy, will teach Italian this year at the Penobscot School in Rockland. She is eager to come to Maine, saying, “It looks peaceful and beautiful, even when covered with snow.” She is attracted to Maine through her love of hiking and being immersed in nature, and “it is near Canada,” revealing her enthusiastic interest in other countries and cultures.

She is “fascinated by Americans,” having met many in her travels. “They have an amazing way of keeping in touch with different cultures,” she said. Proud of her Italian culture, she plans to bring to her Italian language classes her interests in art, architecture and painting. Baldetti’s original career intention was to be a translator, so she immersed herself in the English language by living in Birmingham, England, for academic study of the language. Then she placed herself to use English in business by working in areas of advertising, recruitment, tourism and hospitality. She has done translations for diverse areas of specialty such as Web sites, tourism, literary and educational texts, audiovisual productions, leisure and arts promotions.

Baldetti creates challenges for herself. Her dissertation for her degree was an opportunity to translate into Italian “You’re a Bad Man, Mr. Gum!,” a contemporary book written for teenagers. Because the author used many words that were new, Baldetti was challenged to improvise. She summed up an extensive commentary and analysis of her process by saying, “A translator always puts something of herself into it, one’s own perspective.”

More recently, wanting to experience an Oriental culture, Baldetti completed a six-month work experience in India, teaching Italian to Indian young professionals. Baldetti uses her experience in travel and work as a key tool to understand the real needs of learners, and customizes a program to her students’ interests and backgrounds, while focusing on communication and action blended with grammar and cultural aspects of the language.

A Gala Reception to meet Baldetti and the other faculty members will be held Saturday, Sept. 11 from 2 to 4 p.m. at Penobscot School, 28 Gay St. in Rockland. Classes begin Sept. 20. For more information on the school, visit or call 594-1084.