Have a habit of breaking up fights, and helping both sides talk to each other properly? Like the idea of learning multiple languages? Then you might want to consider a career as an interpreter. Interpreters help those who speak different languages talk to each other. They bridge the communication gap, and can help in a greater exchange of ideas and opinions.
What do they do?
The basic function of an interpreter is to help two people who speak different languages talk to each other. An interpreter could either be one for two spoken languages, or one for sign language.
Interpreters may have to translate even as a person is speaking, and as such have to be able to listen and speak at the same time. It is thanks to interpreters that people of different languages can exchange ideas, trade, come to peaceful agreements and get to know more about each other.
Interpreters can work in a range of situations, from helping someone who is deaf communicate with others, to translating commentary on the television, to working in the United Nations, even to helping negotiate peace treaties between countries.
Kwintessential and Transperfect are two companies who provide interpreting services.
- Ability to remain impartial
- Ability to accurately translate the language, without changing the meaning of what was said
- Able to speak clearly in either language
- Ability to multi-task
How do I get there?
As an interpreter, you must have a degree in either your target language, or have taken a course in interpretation.
You must be able to speak both languages fluently, or be able to sign clearly.
Pros & Cons about this career
You may work part time or full time, and be self employed. In addition, there are many settings where you can work, and there are many different programs that can teach you the needed skills.
Your working hours as a freelancer may be irregular or long, and you may have limited work. Interpreting can become stressful, and if you may need a graduate degree to be allowed to interpret some more technical topics.