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Marion Lemari

Marion Lemari (MA, 2019), an English <> German freelance translator, community interpreter, and language service provider shared the experience she had with the program and how it had helped her as a professional:

"The translation and interpreting industry continues to be a challenging, evolving, and global market. I chose this program because I wanted to learn how to better meet the demands of clients. I needed to find my specialization, learn how to deal with technical requirements, and how to increase productivity. The program provided me with a solid theoretical foundation and the technical knowledge necessary to succeed and compete in this global market. UIUC’s program in Translation and Interpreting Studies can support a wide range of specializations and various languages. Finding a suitable specialization was difficult for me when I first started working as a translator in 2013. As a student, I was able to explore many different translation and interpreting fields; I started with translations for the professions and then discovered literary translation and consecutive interpreting in community settings. The program helped me to narrow down what I wanted to do. I also know now when to reject job assignments.

The technical knowledge necessary to be productive and the solid theoretical foundation I acquired helped me through many challenging translation jobs. I recently translated complaint procedures (discrimination, harassment) from English into German for a state department. If this had landed on my desk before I completed the program, I would have had a hard time deciding how to translate it. Now, I can approach these jobs with confidence because I can reflect on what I am doing. Challenges with this specific translation included locating terminology, consistency with the terms in the text, and section 508 compliance (accessibility). To get a grip on this particular translation, I relied on corpus analysis to find my terms. I also reflected on various levels of equivalence and used CAT tools for productivity and consistency. I am thankful for the education I received at UIUC because I can now use these tools with confidence and fall back on theory when issues with equivalence come up.

Even though I completed the program online, it never felt impersonal. I met many wonderful people and learned a lot not just from the lecturers but also from other students since everyone had a different background, perspective, and language pair. The shared experience of having classes together and meeting each other in person at a professional conference was an additional bonus to the knowledge I gained. I highly recommend the MA program in Translation and Interpreting to anyone who is passionate about translations and wants to pursue a career in this field. The program gives you a solid foundation that you can fall back on in this ever-evolving industry."