Continuing Education: An essential requirement to be a good interpreter.

April 3, 2012 § Leave a comment

Dear Colleagues,

This is the time of the year when work starts to increase, the winter is over, the migrants are back in the U.S. after spending the holidays in their countries, and conference season starts all over the country. This is finally the season to make money, to network with colleagues and clients, and to expand our professional practice.  This is the moment of truth, the day when we have to perform, perhaps before a new potential client, has arrived!

What does this mean?  It means that we have to do an excellent job, and to do so, we need to prepare, we need to practice, and we need to learn more, and more, and more.

Continuing education is the best way to keep our heads above the water in a profession that is constantly evolving. We work with words and new words are born every day. We work with expressions, and new expressions appear every day. We work with technology, and new technology is developed every second.  I firmly believe that all interpreters, regardless of their field and level, must follow a rigorous continuing education program; even if their field of work, clients, or legislation does not require it.  The continuing education season is here as well. I encourage you to look into the conferences offered by the national and international organizations, select a conference and attend it; invest the time and money!

The National Association of Judiciary Interpreters and Translators (NAJIT) will hold its annual conference from May 18-20 in Cambridge Massachusetts,  InterpretAmerica will meet in Monterey California on June 15-16, and the American Translators Association will meet in San Diego California from October 24-28. There are also very good regional conferences all over the country. TAJIT in Texas, The New Mexico Conference in Albuquerque, NATI in Nebraska are a few of the many that you can choose from.  This time I would like to ask you all two things:  If you are a “regular” conference participant, please tell us why you do it, and if you have never been to one of our conferences, please tell us which one you would like to attend.

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