Every September 30 the world has a chance to honor linguists for all that they do on International Translation Day. The significance of the day traces back to the Feast of St. Jerome, which celebrates the patron saint of translators who made a name for himself translating a famous book we all know—the Bible! While his patrons pursued many other fields of study aside from religion, this holiday is a great opportunity to showcase the special role linguistics plays in our modern global society.
TransPerfect is thrilled that there is a universally recognized occasion for people to come together to commend our talented and hard-working freelance experts. Linguists spend years studying to become the very best in their certified specialties. This dedication, time, and energy all contribute to the special mission of bridging language barriers across the world. While TransPerfect is full steam ahead with AI technology and machine translation innovations, these tools are only successful with the collaboration of the freelance experts we partner with.
TransPerfect is proud to have a special insight into the importance of making time to credit the work of our freelance experts. So we posed a question: How exactly are our translators and interpreters bridging barriers this year, in the true spirit of International Translation Day?
Brazilian Portuguese linguist Laura Mendonca Sa and Latin American Spanish linguist Gabriela Escarra were over the moon to share memories of their “picture perfect” visits with TransPerfect.
Gabriela Escarra (bottom left) surrounded by the 2017 NY BMC Team.
“I love Marketing and Corporate Communications, so I try to do most of my work in that area. I have been working with the BMC team for many years, and they are the most encouraging, inspiring, experienced, and committed people. When I am watching TV or walking on the street and I come across one of my transcreated taglines in a commercial or billboard, it is an amazing feeling of accomplishment! Thank you, BMC team, for trusting me a great deal with your creative jobs. I love being part of your team!”
Gabriela’s remarks highlight the special bond TransPerfect project managers share with their freelance linguist partners. This moment for both Gabriela and BMC wasn’t about the technicalities or everyday specifics of a job, but the broader message of truly loving linguistics, and trying to get the perfect selfie that links TransPerfect employees and freelance experts together.
Laura had the chance to stop by at our office in São Paulo—her visit was close to home, and to her personal history. She added, “I recently visited TransPerfect office in São Paulo and met Marianna. It was so nice to meet her and visit the office and my colleagues in my hometown.”
Left to right: Marianna Janine (Internal Brazilian Portuguese Quality Director for TransPerfect) and Laura Mendonca Sa
Laura Mendonca Sa connected with Marianna Janine through one of the many mentoring initiatives TransPerfect offers. Mentorship allows TransPerfect to proactively partner with vendors to achieve the best possible quality for our clients and growth for our freelance experts. Mentorship and connection are just two ways we are on the same page as FIT’s (The International Federation of Translators) 2018 theme for International Translation Day.
“Promoting cultural heritage in changing times” could not tie in more perfectly with how TransPerfect’s dedicated professionals are driving linguistic progress forward in a range of industries such as media, legal, technology, medical, etc.
Marta Manzanares, Spanish Language Lead for TransPerfect, who also donates her time to teach locally at NYC colleges, had a 2018 International Translation Day experience that exemplifies this idea. One of her linguistic students who proudly works as an interpreter at the Hospital for Special Surgery, invited her to a celebratory event for the holiday, where they were both able to share their love of language and desire to use it to help people in need. Did you know patients have the right to receive interpretation free of charge? We can only imagine the deep impact that Marta and her students have had in the lives of patients just with small but powerful information.
Marta went on to address some of the misconceptions around the profession:
“Being able to speak a language does not automatically equip a person to provide translation services. Translation takes skills, practice, and a very specific mindset. Freelance experts play a critical role in society,” she said.
Marta was excited to share this story and kick up her heels to commemorate International Translation Day. It’s truly a memory that shows the progress being made in improving patient care within the international medical community, especially in the highly diverse and multilingual NYC area.
Marta (in red) with fellow linguists at the Hospital for Special Surgery on September 30th.
Back row, left of Marta: former TransPerfect Quality Manager Javier Labrador.
Marta explained that this year she sent her students a special note about the importance of the holiday:
“To my currents students, who are usually new to translation, I explained that September 30th was chosen in honor of Saint Jerome, who is known for translating the Bible from Hebrew into Latin in the years 382–405. No Internet, no dictionaries, no precedents. I reminded them that while they have it easier now, it is still not an easy task.”
At TransPerfect we hope hearing the history of International Translator Day inspires everyone to show appreciation to the linguistic connections we’ve made. Remember: translation is more than being multilingual, and freelance experts are more than just vendors. They’re our friends, students, mentors, and partners. As TransPerfect and the world around it continue to grow and change, we look forward to many more years of celebrating our freelance experts, and hearing their diverse stories. If you know anyone who is interested in being a part of our freelance community please encourage them to visit gateway.transperfect.com and apply today!