April 15th saw the launch of this year’s Interpreting & Translation week at UCLan. The annual event which features a number of sessions that run throughout the week, explores the wide and varied possibilities that are available to those interested in pursuing a career in interpreting and translation. Those in attendance have been lucky enough to see specialist interpreters and translators in action, also having the opportunity to seek advice, as well as gain a real insight into the working lives of individuals who specialise in this rewarding career. With the week drawing to a close, now is the perfect time to reflect on just a small selection of the numerous career paths available to budding interpreters and translators.
Careers in Interpreting
Interpreters are absolutely essential to the smooth running and functioning of some of the largest organisations in the world, with government officials and business people relying on interpreters when two parties do not speak a common language. Not only do interpreters require an excellent knowledge of a second or third language, but must also have an excellent grasp of their mother tongue in order to use the appropriate language within a given situation.
If you like the idea of flexibility and being your own boss, than a career as a freelance interpreter might be well suited to you, with a whole-host of potential clients including multinational corporations, football clubs and governmental agencies all looking to employ freelance interpreters. If you would prefer work which is slightly more rigid and focused on a particular area, in-house interpreters are often employed in large organisations on a full-time, part-time or on a contract basis. As an in-house interpreter, you are likely to be performing additional tasks, such as translation, editing or minute taking. Voice over recording is an area of interpreting that may seem a little less obvious, but it is a specialism which is increasingly in demand. Voice over recorders are used in a number of different media, including the news, advertisements and in sports events just to name a few. This career gives you the chance to use your language skills in exciting environments, often through the use of the latest technology. Other careers in interpreting you may want to check out include conference interpreting, public service interpreting and telephone interpreting.
Careers in Translation
Nearly every form of media you are able to think of requires translating at some point. From blogs, books, computer games to musical scores, maps and even knitting patterns, the list is endless. As an in-house translator, you may find yourself working for large organisations such as games companies who employ a team of translators to cover the languages of their principal markets. Alternatively, as a freelance translator, there is no limit to the specialisms you can work on – from translating novels to instruction manuals; promotional posters to pharmaceutical dossiers. All these documents and many more need translating from one language to another. Freelance translators must be disciplined and prepared to be patient while they wait to build up a client-base. A very interesting and challenging career route for a translator may be working as a subtitler, which often involves project management and proof reading in addition to translation in a single role. The role requires a great deal of creativity, and is a great option for anyone with an interest in film or media. Other careers in translation include editing and proofreading, as well as translation project managing.
The final sessions of Interpreting and Translation week are taking place today (18th April), with this morning’s session providing an opportunity to meet and interact with the UCLan community of Interpreters and Translators. For those of you looking to squeeze the final drops out of this event-filled week, the final session takes place today at 1-3pm in Fylde 219, with an MA Interpreting and Translation session offering a simultaneous Arabic interpreting master class.