Next week some of the friends I met during my BA in Italy will receive their Master’s degrees as interpreters and translators from the same university (and I’m sure they’ll do great!). This made me think about our translation courses and those aspects that universities could improve on in the future. Here are some:
– Don’t just organise meetings with translation agencies, but also with freelancers, language consultants and localizers. Show that being a translator involves a series of opportunities, not just one.
– Organise seminars/modules/(something!) that concentrate on those key factors of freelancing that budding translators are usually faced to solve on their own, such as finance/accounting (at least some information regarding the country where the programme takes place) or marketing.
– Do not just offer internship programmes, but monitor what students have learnt from those experiences… and act accordingly. If a language service provider does not care to train their interns and cannot be bothered to reward students’ time and skills with hands-on knowledge, maybe next time think twice before granting them a couple of students for a few weeks.
– Raise awareness about mailing lists dedicated to literary translations, CAT tools, and so on. Tell students that there is a translators’ community out there. This is likely to help newcomers to overcome start-up issues as well as warning them against some of the pitfalls the translation community is aware of.
Any suggestions, dear readers? By the way, have a great weekend!