Interpreter 4-1-1: Ways Interpreters Can Stay Passionate

Interpreter 4-1-1: Ways Interpreters Can Stay Passionate

By Brenda Cartwright  |  Tuesday, December 15, 2015

This article is by Brenda Cartwright. Brenda is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, and well known presenter. Brenda is the author of the Dear Reality column in the VIEWS publication from Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and the book Encounters With Reality: 1001 Interpreter Scenarios. She contributes blog articles for Signing Savvy on interpreting, Deaf culture, and answering a series of "Dear BC" interpreter questions.

You will meet interpreters who are burnt out and no longer care about doing their best. Perhaps they are satisfied with their entry level certification. Or they only go to workshops to get their required CEUs.

Here are some suggestions to keep that spark that drew you into the Interpreter profession in the first place:

  • Plan to go to a workshop with interpreter friends.
  • Mentor an eager Interpreter Training Program student.
  • Go to deaf social events.
  • Seek opportunities to team interpret.
  • Network with other interpreters.
  • Do pro bono interpreting work.
  • Sign up with an agency to try new areas of interpreting.
  • Seek out more deaf friends.
  • Stay in touch with interpreter friends outside of just interpreting work.
  • Look at workshops outside of your local geographic area.
  • Share your experiences with others (ie. write a blog).

There are lots of ways to challenge yourself and keep your interpreting skills sharp. These tips will help you stay passionate and engaged in the community.

How do you stay passionate and engaged as an interpreter? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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About the Author

Brenda CartwrightBrenda Cartwright is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, well known presenter, and author of several best selling sign language and interpreting textbooks from the RID Press. For 35 years Brenda was the Chair of the Sign Language Interpreter Program at Lansing Community College in Lansing, Michigan.

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