International Translation and Conference Interpretation Practicum

Put your classroom experience to practice within a prestigious international organization.  

Professional, Immersive Opportunities 

This International Translation and Conference Interpretation practicum takes advantage of in-country contacts and facilities, allowing students to put into practice what they have learned over the first three semesters in the Master of Arts in Translation and Interpretation program.  With close supervision and valuable feedback, students will: 

  • Interpret in mute booths at a live, high-level international conference held at the United Nations
  • Gauge the distance between their interpretation work and that expected on in professional market
  • Work on the inside of a busy translation unit at the United Nations and have their work revised by professional staff translators
  • Experience work expectations for in-house translators
  • Provide critical seminar and escort interpreting using portable equipment and manage the numerous unforeseen barriers to interpretation that exist in the professional world
  • Be immersed in a foreign language and culture

Practicum dates: January 7 – 25, 2013

Interpretation Experience

During this practicum, students will interpret in mute booths for conferences hosted at the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC).  Students will be expected to prepare for these conferences and produce glossaries as if they were professional assignments. Working in pairs to interpret speakers, students will receive feedback from Professor Shulman-Mora on their work.  In addition, students will observe professional interpreters and will be able to get a feel for what is expected at the professional level. Normally these contract interpreters meet with students and field questions about working for international organizations.

Students will also provide essential interpretation services for the IPS J-term course "Transitional (in) Justice" led by Professor Jan Black during the trip’s Santiago portion. This includes simultaneous interpretation from Spanish to English for lectures, discussions and site visits on the topics of human rights, Chilean history and politics, as well as consecutive interpretation in both directions for museum visits, tours and more informal meetings. Professor Shulman-Mora accompanies and supervises the student interpreters on these assignments and provides appropriate feedback on their work.

Translation Experience

While at the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, students will be supervised by staff translators in the English or Spanish Section of the Documents and Publications Division where they will gain valuable experience in translating, referencing and reviewing texts in the context of an international organization. 

At the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, students will have a chance to provide translation services based on specific site needs. They will be supervised by and have their work revised by Professor Shulman-Mora. Past work at the Food and Agriculture Organization has included website translation and localization of a public service campaign for the organization’s Latin America website.

How to Apply

Interested students should inquire directly to Professor Cas Shulman-Mora at cshulmanmora@miis.edu.