Here at Translation Equipment, today we are launching our new series of interviews with professionals from the interpretation field.
We created this interview space to give you the opportunity to have a better overview of the interpreting industry through the real experiences of professionals.
In this first episode we welcome Mrs. Linda Dunlap.
My name is Linda Dunlap. I’m a Florida Certified Spanish Court Interpreter. I was an Adjunct Professor at Miami Dade College, 2011—2014 and President of The Association of Translators and Interpreters of Florida (2012-2014)
- What first made you become an interpreter?
Although I wanted to be an interpreter as early as high school, I was discouraged from the career by my parents and school counselor who didn't understand the profession (the school counselor said it wasn't a real profession) and my mother was afraid I'd move to New York or somewhere far away (I lived near San Francisco, CA.)
Nevertheless, I became proficient in Spanish in high school and college and helped people in the Oakland Spanish speaking community as early as 1972.
When I moved to Spain to study my junior year of college, I stayed there for 7 years, working as an English teacher as well as in international business. Occasionally, I got to work as an interpreter for visiting businessmen (I remember something about a batter making facility owned by a British company) and once doing simultaneous whispered for a group of employees at the American Cultural Center. When I moved to Florida in 1980, I worked in international business where my languages were of use but not the only or even the main thing that I did.
Eventually, after marrying and raising children, I went back to school (Miami Dade College) and took the Translation & Interpretation classes there, becoming state court certified in 2011.
- How was your experience upon entering the real world and which was the job you first landed as an interpreter?
I started helping a friend's husband with homeowner statements (he is an independent adjuster) and began getting some jobs in the Greater Miami area as well. My career really took off after taking classes at MDC and getting certified.
- What field of interpretation do you specialize in?
- What is it that you enjoy the most of being an interpreter?
I like the variety in the subjects, locations, and people that I meet.
- Which is your favorite language Interpretation system, or which one do you usually work with?
I work mostly with consecutive in legal settings although I also do simultaneous. I also do written translations and am quite good at sight translation.
- Can you share any advice for people interested in becoming Interpreters?
No matter how bilingual you are or believe yourself to be, if you want to work in the legal field, STUDY! Learn the correct terminology and PRACTICE! And remember... this is a job that requires constant learning. If that's not your thing, find another profession.