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Does everyone know Spanish?
Thread poster: hfp
hfp
United States
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Aug 15, 2008

Hi, everyone. I titled this topic "Does everyone know Spanish?" because sometimes I worry that there are already too many translators and interpreters in the United States who can translate and interpret flawlessly or at least at the level desired in court proceedings for example. I have been studying Spanish for a while, in fact I am getting my masters in Spanish linguistics down here in Chile with the idea of either becoming a Spanish professor and/or interpreting in the US courts some day. I realize that interpreting in the courts requires a lot of studying, experience and preparation, not necessarily related to linguistics.

My main question is, are there a lot of job opportunities for interpreters in the US courts or are there so many certified interpreters and translators that the business has become hard to get into? I just would hate to go back to the US and find out that there is already a surplus of qualified interpreters and that my translation and interpretation abilities are useless.

I'm sorry if this is a dumb question.


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Heidi C  Identity Verified
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There is Know and.... know. Aug 15, 2008

Not a dumb question at all.

I can tell you that if you are interested in court interpreting, there is a lot of work. So much work, that there are not enough certified interpreters (be it State or Federal) and many times people who "know" Spanish are doing it even if they are not certified.

There are a lot of people who "know" Spanish. This does not mean that they can translate or interpret... (and I will not even go into the quality of their Spanish...) Hay de todo If you are good, there is no worry about getting work.

I am certified as a Federal Interpreter. Though there is a great need, the process is very strict and there is less than a 10% pass rate. So once you are certified, you have more work than you can imagine...

And different states have different certification requirements. But there is a big need in court interpreting and also in medical interpreting.

Good luck!


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teju  Identity Verified
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Not a dumb question at all Aug 15, 2008

The first thing that came to mind has to do with citizenship. I have a friend who's a Mexican national who had a heck of a time getting a job at district court, only to lose it after one year because of work permit problems. I think in federal court, they're even more strict, doing a complete background check.

Then you have to become certified, a state certification for the lower courts, or federally certified for federal court. There are a lot fewer federal interpreters, as you can imagine, so those who have that certification are in a better position to be hired. The federal exam is only given once a year, and it's a two part exam. Once you pass the first part (written), you are invited to take the second one, and it's usually six months later, so this is a long process. State certifications where I live have a similar two-step process.

It has been my experience (as a state and federally certified court interpreter in the US) that those who have a job in federal court, don't leave until they retire, they are excellent jobs. You have to be in the right place at the right time. Now, once you pass the federal exam, they will mail you listings for any opening in any federal court anywhere in the country, so, if you're willing to move there, your chances of getting a federal position improve greatly.

Working in district, municipal, magistrate, or probate court is completely different. I live right on the Texas, New Mexico border and work on both states. In Texas, they have staff interpreters, they only hire freelancers if someone's going on vacation or sick. In New Mexico, they have one staff interpreter who hires freelancers to cover the needs of the court. I would assume every state has their own system. Hopefully other colleagues will advise you about other places.

Good luck to you.


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teju  Identity Verified
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For Heidi Aug 15, 2008

Heidi C wrote: I can tell you that if you are interested in court interpreting, there is a lot of work. So much work, that there are not enough certified interpreters.


Are you referring a a specific place? Saludos


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Luis Arri Cibils  Identity Verified
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It depends Aug 16, 2008

hfp wrote:

My main question is, are there a lot of job opportunities for interpreters in the US courts or are there so many certified interpreters and translators that the business has become hard to get into? I just would hate to go back to the US and find out that there is already a surplus of qualified interpreters and that my translation and interpretation abilities are useless.

I'm sorry if this is a dumb question.


Dear hfp,

Your question is certainly not dumb, but its answer is just “it depends.” It depends on what you have to offer.

You must start from assuming that the US is or soon will be the second largest “Spanish speaking country in the world,” with a Spanish-speaking population of nearly 45M. Only Mexico has a definitely larger population. Spain and Colombia are close contenders. A large chunk of these “new Americans” are highly educated. Do not assume that the new Americans are just gardeners or construction workers, two ptherwise very respectable professions. Many of the others will give you a “run for the money” in your translation-interpreting business.

In the interpreting side, again, it all depends. There are very few interpreters that have passed the FCICE exam, the Federal Court Interpreting Certification Exam, an exam it has a passing rate of about 5% of those that take it. If your are Court Certified, federal courts must take your services over those from anyone who are not so certified. In a sense, and at least for the time being, “you have it made”, if you are so certified.

The other interpreters will work, at a lower rate, many doing whispering interpreting in family court or other lower courts. Some states (an increasing number) will ask you to pass their state’s or the Consortium’s exam (an exam preparerd by a collection of states), supposedly a relatively easier exam compared to FCICE (speed of the spoken texts to interpret during the exam, for example), even though I do not personally know to what extent. Suffice to say that the states that have an examination requirement to give you a state certification will take your FCICE results, but the reverse is not true. Federal courts will not care if you are a state-certified interpreter.

Other states (fewer each time) do not have any requirements (but they do have even lower compensation) for you to interpret, but then, who can say what one has whispered, rightly or wrongly, on the defendant’s ears.

In federal courts, on the other hand, interpreting is cabin-like. I was once a witness in one federal drug-trafficking case. There was no cabin, but the interpreters (two at a time) simultaneously translated, speaking to a mike, from a far away place in the courtroom. The defendant had earphones. In short, bu and large federal court interpreting is like cabin work, i.e., simultaneous interpreting. The rest is a free for all, with a lower compensation.

Let’s talk about a field with which I am much more familiar: translation. In my view, there are two types of translation: “commodity translation" (in my definition, “commodity translation" is a translation that because of the pair involved or the subject matter can be done by many or most of the ProZ translators in that pair.) A birth certificate or a lover's letter to his or her boy or girl friend are just but two trivial examples.

That segment of the translation business is moving out of the US, like the textile industry did (as I have said in other thread since it is something that is plainly obvious in South Carolina, the state I live). If there are so many “commodity” translators all over the world, accesible through the Internet, why the “locals” should be paid more?

On the other hand, there are plenty “specialized" niches to translate in the US. In another thread, a link was posted to see the average salaries paid in the U.S. to translators to and from a given language. In New York city, per that site, the average salary (i.e., an in-house position) offered to a Dutch, Spanish ot Poruguese translator was between USD 38-40K. For an Arabic translator, it was nearly 140K, a product of a national security driven demand and a limited offer of translators.

It is not easy to change pairs, but you can always specialize. I used the same site to calculate the average rate for attorneys (I am one) in the US. Suffice to say that I smiled when I saw the average number. I am not the only attorney-translator on this site that has the same experience as I. In the real state business, location, location and location are the three key requirements for success. In our business, at least in the US, and likely in Europe, those three elements are specialization, specialization and specialization, with a pinch of willingness to help the client.

In short, if you want to do legal translation when you are back in the US, imbibe as much as you can of Latin culture while you are there. Learn as much as possible re Civil Law. Later, while back in the US, you will have to learn Common Law, not to become a lawyer but to be able to move between the two systems.

If you want to be a Fed. Court interpreter, Teju and Heidi will be of great help to you, they are both Fed. Ct. Certified interpreters. I am not. My legal interpreting experience is limited to depositions, which requires a different set of skills (good short term memory, ability to take notes).

Best luck,

Luis


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hfp
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Local time: 16:32
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Thanks Aug 16, 2008

Thanks, Heidi, teju and Luis.

Heidi, I appreciate your input. I will continue looking into court interpreting and possibly medical interpreting since you say that there is still a lot of work available.

Teju, thanks also. I am a United States citizen by the way.

Do you two see the need for court interpreters diminishing any time soon? I don't plan to take the certification test for a few years.

Luis, thanks for your feedback also. The very fact that there is an ever increasing number of educated bilingual Americans is what had me concerned. I'm just hoping everyone doesn't learn Spanish by the time I return home, which I don't know when that will be.


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teju  Identity Verified
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Well... Aug 16, 2008

hfp wrote:Thanks, Heidi, teju and Luis.
Heidi, I appreciate your input. I will continue looking into court interpreting and possibly medical interpreting since you say that there is still a lot of work available.
Teju, thanks also. I am a United States citizen by the way.
Do you two see the need for court interpreters diminishing any time soon? I don't plan to take the certification test for a few years.


... I was wrong to assume you were from Chile. Being a citizen sure helps.

About medical interpreting, my brother did it for a year while he was a graduate student, it doesn't pay very well. With a masters in linguistics, I'm sure you are looking for a higher salary. Medical interpreting is less regulated than court interpreting, so everybody and his brother is doing it. Many hospitals and clinics now subscribe to a telephonic interpreting system for many languages, it's much cheaper than having someone on staff or on call.

I would like to expand a bit on the way a colleague described interpreting in federal court. Each court has its own set up, as far as equipment. I have never seen an interpreter's booth in any court. Normally, we work with wireless transmitters, and each judge wants you to follow his/her own protocol. I like the ones that don't tell us how to do our jobs and we can move around freely to see the speaker. There are others who are more strict (most of them) and want you to sit in the same place all the time. And we do all 3 modes, simultaneous, consecutive and sight. While it's true that most of what we do is simultaneous, we certainly use the consecutive mode quite often. During trials, when there's witness testimony, and during hearings, when the judge addresses the defendant. Sight interpretation is what we don't do that often, but it does come up. I've interpreted birth certificates, contracts, and handwritten letters for the record.

As far as the need for interpreters diminishing, I would need a crystal ball to tell you. But, interpreters retire, move away, change jobs, and whether we want to or not, pass away, so there's always turnover. Federal interpreters can work anywhere. Most want to get a staff position in federal court. A few are freelancers who work in different courts (not much work in federal court this way, since all you can do is substitute). When you work in district court, you get paid at the lower state rate, so it's best to get a staff position if possible.

In some states, like New Mexico, you can start working as a court interpreter without a certification. You would be what they call a "qualified interpreter" using your college degree as credentials. The pay would be lower until you become certified, but at least, you can start working right away, and people get to know the quality of your work. Networking is important.

Keep in mind also that every state is different. A friend of mine moved away to the Midwest, and she had a heck of a time getting work. It's safe to say that your odds are much better in states with a high Hispanic population.

If you have any questions as your moving date gets closer, you can write to me at my email (on my profile page) if you like.
Saludos


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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
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Good Opportunities Aug 16, 2008

I think there are good, and growing opportunities in the US. Now, does everyone know Spanish? Well, I live in a place (same place as Teju) where practically everyone does, but very few know it at the highest levels or if they do, then they do not know English at the highest levels or at all. Every day there are more and more, but I think the demand increases more than the supply.

To respond to Luis, yes, there are some more educated Latin Americans coming to the US but the vast majority are still the gardeners and construction workers and the like. And very importantly, the level of English required is difficult to attain.

I became certified through what is now known as the FCICE in 1981. Since I was already tired of bureaucracy anyway I never considered a job in the Federal Courts, and I few years later I quit the job I had became independent, specializing in translation and conference interpreting. There has never been a lack of work. I have also seen the staff at the Federal and State Courts grow, and that will continue.

From material I have seen there are about 1,300 FCICE certified interpreters; when I passed it we were slightly under 200 so the increase has not really been that dramatic, even with more flexible standards in recent years. To correct Teju, the FCICE cycle is every TWO years and I understand that written exams for the next cycle start next month, in September. And yes, it is a good paying job. In addition, I suspect that quite a few are nearing retirement age and will need to be replaced.

In recent years there has been an increasing spread of Mexicans of both legal and illegal immigration status outside the states of the Southwestern US, so the needs are increasing and I suppose even becoming urgent in many places. Of course the pay has not always kept pace with the need but it eventually should, especially with increasing emphasis on qualifications and certification.

Chile is a good place to be, especially because of its excellent educational system and well educated population. I have put in my time there also, I just had to get back to my usual Mexican accent when I returned!


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teju  Identity Verified
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I stand corrected Aug 16, 2008

Henry Hinds wrote: To correct Teju, the FCICE cycle is every TWO years and I understand that written exams for the next cycle start next month, in September.


I should've said that the process of becoming federally certified (and in most places the state certification too) takes two years. Each year there's a test, but it's a two-part exam. The first part is the written test, if you pass, you can take the oral part the following year.

This year they are doing the written part of the test, and like Henry said it will be in September, on the 20th, but the deadline for registration has already passed, it was the 4th of this month. This means anyone who wants to become federally certified now needs to wait until 2010, when they will have the written cycle again.

I do live in a city where the population is close to 70% Hispanic, but, even so, I know several people who are state certified, and they don't have enough work. I also have a friend who's federally certified, she works as a freelancer, and just yesterday she was telling me that she barely gets any work lately. Unfortunately, there are a lot of things that come into play when it comes to getting work regularly, and some of them don't have anything to do with your ability. I don't want to discourage you, I think someone with a solid background, and a excellent command of both languages will do very well.


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hfp
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I shall not be discouraged. Aug 16, 2008

I really appreciate your time, Henry and teju. I don't plan to take the FCICE until 2010 or possibly 2012, depending on how prepared I am. I still have three more semesters of school left down here in Santiago, so I'll be in Chile for a least a year and a half longer.

After that maybe I'll stay here or perhaps I'll go home. How far in advance would you say it is necessary to study for the exam? Just to give you a little bit of background, I majored in Spanish language and literature and spent a year in Spain and I've now been in Chile for a total of 8 months. I guess it all depends, but I am thinking that maybe I'll start studying for it little by little and perhaps in 2010 or 2012 I'll take the plunge.

I grew up speaking only English and didn't begin studying Spanish until high school. As a result, I have an American accent that I am trying to reduce and I am trying to remain in Chile to improve my fluency and translation/interpretation ability. Does having an American accent hurt you very much when interpreting?

Most of my family lives in North Carolina and I would like to work there one day if possible. Do you know if many interpreters are needed in NC?


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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
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Take your time Aug 17, 2008

I do not know what your age is, but I suspect fairly young. You have time. Perfect your knowledge of Spanish, keep improving your knowledge in English, and perfect your accent. I have no age statistics on who passes the FCICE, but I would suspect not many still in their 20's. It's a game where age and experience rule.

Check out the offerings of the University of Arizona, they have preparation courses for the FCICE. And after all, it's my own alma mater and so is Chile.

Spend some time in Mexico and learn their manner of speech and the subtleties of their expression, it is very different, because in the US you would be dealing with them more than any other group; hardly ever with Chileans.

North Carolina and that entire region appears to have an increasing population of Mexicans where they have not traditionally settled, so the opportunities there might not be so bad. I don't mind that so much, I've visited there in recent years and I can now get my Mexican food fix with no problem.

The problem is getting a Mexican food fix in Chile, I suffer... nada de picante, pero el pescado, los mariscos y el vino (sobre todo el vino) me alivian algo el sufrimiento.


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hfp
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Te encuentro toda la razón. Aug 17, 2008

I'll do as you say, Henry. I do want to return to Mexico some day. I'm sure you're right about not dealing with Chileans in the US. Although, one of the advantages I have noticed in Chile is that after spending time here, it is much easier to understand people from other countries. Mexicans seem to speak more clearly than Chileans.

About getting good Mexican food in Chile, I found an all right place in Santiago. Quesadillas are definitely hard to come by, though.


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Luis Arri Cibils  Identity Verified
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Everything is finah, or not, in the Carolinah Aug 17, 2008

hfp wrote:
Most of my family lives in North Carolina and I would like to work there one day if possible. Do you know if many interpreters are needed in NC?


Hi hfp,

You asked about North Carolina. I live in the South Carolina Upstate, in the Greenville-Spartanburg area, 60 miles from Asheville, 80 or so from Charlotte, both cities, of course, in NC. I can give you a neighbor’s opinion, although the situation in NC and in SC are quite different. But we have a common association, CATI, the Carolina Association of Translators and Interpreters (www.catiweb.org) that is a Chapter of ATA, for translators and interpreters in North and South Carolina. I was, but no longer am, a CATI member, although I am still an active member of ATA.

Let me first point out that I can, at best, give you an opinion on the lower end of the interpreting practice. I am not a certified Fed. Ct. interpreter. I took, and passed, the written part of the FCICE exam (not a big achievement if you dare to call yourself a professional translator). After passing the written part, I bought the ACEBO materials to train for the oral examination. After reviewing the materials for a while, I decided that with the time I could assign to prepare for the exam, even if the exam was one year away, hell would have to freeze over for me to pass it. I may some day take the dare and try the exam, just as a personal challenge, but I sincerely doubt it. I am doing quite well as a translator to invest a non-existing time to exam preparation. Thus, for the high end of the profession, my opinion is worthless compared to Henry’s, teju’s and Heidi’s, all of them certified Fed. Ct. interpreters.

My comments, however, are not based just on my limited experience. My wife is an interpreter, although a very specialized one. In SC there is a state organization that sponsors and pays for assistance to children below age 3 who have some developmental problems. These problems may be as mild as some slight physical or speech developmental delay to Down syndrome. When the child is born in the U.S. but his or her parents do not speak English, whatever is the citizenship of the child’s parents and their immigration status, the organization also pays for an interpreter to help the therapist to communicate with the child and his or her parents. That is what my wife does (15 to 25 assignments a week). The compensation is nothing to write home about but, as I tell my wife, she is paid to play grandma, compensating the fact that our grandchildren are in Texas, 1,000 miles away.

My wife started as an interpreter with an agency that was, at the time, the sole agency in the area, but does not exist any longer. They paid peanuts (about 20% of their take or even less; we verified that later), but my wife was trained by the agency, although I believe self-trained would be a more apt description. Her earlier assignments were medical, mostly related to Workers’ Comp., and some Family Court cases. She is now certified to play "interpreter-grandma” and, at least for the time being, that’s all she does.

Medical and Family Court interpreting assignments are “ideal” grounds, from an agency's point of view, to train interpreters in the sense that there is no record of the mistakes made. During a medical appointment in a Workers’ Comp. case, the only bilingual person in the examining room is the interpreter, and the medical examination’s sole purpose is to limit the insurance agency’s liability. No one is really trying to cure anyone. It is just a “legal” game. Argh!

In Family Court hearings, which always take place in a small room with bad acoustics and with no possibility, given the size of the courtroom, for the interpreter to place him or herself at a distance sufficient to use wireless equipment without interfering with the proceedings, interpreters by and large just whisper into the defendant’s ears. Furthermore, the few occasions where the interpreter must do consecutive interpretating for the record are regarding very simple questions from the judge to the defendant, and the defendant’s answers to those questions. They are not one hour long examinations and cross examinations on the record typical of higher courts.

Many, most or even all interpreters working today in the SC Upstate worked for that agency for a while.

Although Henry is absolutely right stating that consumers of interpreting services far outnumber providers, I would not be as optimistic as him about the future. I tend to agree with teju's opinion, although hers is mostly limited to medical interpreting, that there might be a surplus of low end interpreters, at least in certain locations. For example, in general, in South Carolina, at least up to now, the situation is about the same but for any type of interpreting work, not just medical. Many bilingual people just "try out" the profession. The medical field, of course, is even worse. Many hospital have their own interpreters, badly paid, or they hire "a dime a dozen" freelancers from agencies that pay them less than 30% of the agency's take.

It is changing, though. There is an ongoing process to upgrade the services. The state is moving to adopt a certification procedure. I have received many invitations to take a course to prepare for the exam, which I do not intend to do. Further, in some rural areas in the state, there is even a shortage of trained interpreters to assist in court.

When I took the written part of the FCICE exam, I met a woman, also taking the exam, who was a translator in federal courts, yet she was not certified. Of course, she was paid significantly less than certified court interpreters. Compensation is set by law. She was taking the exam just to be better paid. This meant that there were not enough certified Fed. Ct. interpreters in the state at that time. In fact, at the time, I knew of only of one Fed. Ct. certified interpreter in the entire state.

In short, the low end may be saturated. The high end may be in short supply. Again, as I stated in my first post, it all depends.

NC is somewhat different. They have had a state certification for quite a long time. Further, Hispanics started to move to NC much earlier than to SC. When I came to SC from Texas, early in 2001, I saw few persons on the street that were obviously Hispanic. Today, that is a common occurrence.

Hispanics moved first to NC because it is a "friendlier" and richer, state. For example, NC granted, and for all I know, still grants, driving licenses without proof of citizenship or permanent residency. With time, Hispanics started moving to SC.

Will the trend continue? I have no idea. Apparently, I must check, SC has moved away from a “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy to a policy where the police can contact ICE (formerly, the INS) regarding the legal immigation status of persons arrested for other issues, including trafic violations. As I understand, “la Migra” has been very active in the state lately. As I also understand, many Hispanics are startung to consider moving out of the state.

Will this affect the number of Hispanics in the state? Your bet is as good as mine. Will the Hispanic population continue growing as fast as it did in the last ten years? Again, your bet is as good as mine.

In general, I would say, translators and interpreters must adapt their business model to the circumstances. For example, you may not want to start by taking the FCICE exam. You might first try NAJIT, the National Association of Judiciary Interpreters and Translators (www.najit.org), which has also a certification exam, which is highly respected. As I understand, the difference is in speed. FCICE is supposed to go as fast as 180 wpm, indeed that's the rate of the fastest exercises in the ACEBO materials. Other exams go only as fast as 160 wpm. Please do not hold me to those numbers. That’s only what I heard. Yet, if true, those 20 wpm difference might be the difference between passing and failing the exam. Starting with a NAJIT cerrification, or the corresponding state certification, might be an entry point. Taking the FCICE exam, perhaps, may be, depending on your personal circumstances, something to consider at a later time. Again, your call.

Further, do not forget the many advantages you have by being an American citizen. There are many state agencies who would require a person to be a citizen to work either as a translator or interpreter for them. I am also a US citizen, and, through an agency, I was able to secure security clearance to do translations for the Department of Justice, mainly, in my case, mostly extradition requests. Through that agency, I am collecting yearly as much money from them as the median income for translators in the US. And I do work for another 15 to 20 agencies.

Best luck,

Luis


[Edited at 2008-08-17 22:28]

[Edited at 2008-08-17 23:32]

[Edited at 2008-08-17 23:48]


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hfp
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Wow! Aug 19, 2008

Wow! That's quite a post, Luis. I'm not sure I know how to thank you for writing so much, but I really do appreciate it. I am definitely going to look into the Association of Translators and Interpreters. While reading about the FCICE, I did think about the NC court interpreter examination and it interested me as well. In fact, I may actually take that exam before the FCICE just to take things little by little. Not that the NC test is easy. I'm sure it would put me to shame if I took it right now, but perhaps its easier than the federal exam.

It seems to me that the best way to get into the interpreting business is to take as many of these tests as possible and consequently get certified in as many ways as possible. That way I guess people consider you more valuable. I imagine another essential task is just practice a whole lot and gain a lot of experience. People, such as you guys, have made it clear that the opportunities available depend on how good you are.

That's interesting that you passed the written part of the exam but chose not to take the oral part. Is the exam just too difficult or is it really not that necessary to you? I am trying to ask in the kindest way. Remember, I am just a little kid, only 23, and have only recently considered all of these tests. So don't take anything I say the wrong way.

The reason why I thought about taking the federal exam before the NC exam is because I am not absolutely sure I want to work in NC. I don't want to limit myself. But maybe it would be a good stepping stone towards the national exam.


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teju  Identity Verified
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More info Aug 19, 2008

http://www.ncsconline.org/D_RESEARCH/CourtInterp/CICourtConsort.html

This is a link for the National Center for State Courts (NCSC), there's a "frequently asked questions" page that you might find very useful. Among other things, there's a list of all the states that belong to the Consortium, all 40 of them, and North Carolina is among them. This means that if you become state certified in any of the consortium states, your certification is recognized in all the others. And yes, it is safe to say that a state court interpreter exam is much easier than the federal one. Most people get their state certification first for this reason. You'll find that they vary a lot, for example, in New Mexico, there's no written exam. The first part is the simultaneous section, and the second part is the consecutive and sight. Some people have a problem with the written part of the exam, and it's much easier for them to take the test in states like NM.

I would say the the oral part of the federal exam is the hardest, but I have friends who had to take the written part 4 and 5 times, some of them haven't been able to overcome this hurdle. There are people in the US who are "heritage speakers", they learned Spanish at home, hearing their parents speak it. Some of these people haven't had much formal education in Spanish, and that's where they stumble. With you studying abroad, you should not have this problem.

The oral part is quite difficult, and nerves can play a big part on your success. To prepare for this, I attended an intensive 4 or 5 day training at the University of Arizona, in Tucson, that was wonderful. I highly recommend it. I also bought Holly Mikkelson's Turbo edition of The Interpreter's Edge, which goes much faster than the other one. It was worth every penny. I've loaned it to many friends since I used it, I'm not sure who's got it now, but it's still on loan. You can find all of Mikkelson's materials at acebo.com. (Mikkelson's first name is Holly, which is acebo in Spanish).

The University of Arizona at Tucson also has a fabulous training program in the Summer, it's three weeks long, some people call it "interpreter's boot camp" because they give you a lot of information and training in a short period of time. Its formal name is the Agnese Haury Institute for Court Interpretation. Some people take this course to prepare for the state and federal exams.

Attending ATA seminars is always a good idea, I've been a member for years. The next one will be held in Orlando, Florida, November 5-8. Not only do you learn a lot, but there's always booths of companies ready to hire interpreters and translators. NAJIT is another good organization, can't tell you much about it, since I'm not a member. I have friends who like it, and others who have canceled their membership.

I encourage you to check out the NCSC's website, you'll learn a lot. Good luck to you!


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