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International translation day

The 30th of Septemeber is internationaly celebrated as the International Translators day. The date for this celebration was selected because of the patron saint of translators, St. Jerome, a bible translator who translated the Old Testament from Hebrew into Latin. On this Occasion you can take part or visit many different events, which are organised by diffrent translation organisations all over the world.

Supposing you’ve just finished a translation graduate program and are now looking for a translator job. Where to start, what to do? Firstly, you have to decide whether you would like to work directly for end clients or rather for a translation agency. I believe the combination of both might turn out to be a good choice. Especially at the beginning it might be easier for you to start up with a translation agency, since they already have several different clients and can therefore regularly provide you with texts that need to be translated. I’ve started at a translation agency myself and must say this has proved to be a very good decision. It is also very important that you produce a good CV and keep it up to date. You can find some useful tips on how to write a successful CV at http://www.kent.ac.uk/careers/cv.htm.

Translation tools

Modern era translators are constantly being faced with a whole arsenal of different translation tools. Translation tools is a common term for all the programs which a translator may find helpful during his work. Those are, for instance, software localisation tools, terminology management tools, machine translation tools, translation memory systems, electronic dictionaries and glossaries, analysis programs, project management programs and counting programs. The most known and widely used translation tools are Trados, Transit, MultiTerm, DejaVu and SDLX. These translation tools help us to improve text quality and standardise the terminology, however, one must be aware of the fact that they are only useful with certain types of texts. Due to the nature of the texts which I translate most of the time (lots of repetitions, specific terminology) different translation tools often prove to be very helpful and time-saving.

Freelance translation job

A freelance translator job involves working as a self-employed translator, either for different translation agencies or similar companies or directly for end clients. A freelance translator is often specialised in one or more particular fields, such as technical, legal, commercial, medical or financial translation. I’ve been a freelance translator for 8 years now and I absolutely love my job. The greatest advantage is that I’m able to work independently and have flexible working hours. Since I’m a night person and am most productive in night hours, this fits perfectly for me. I’ve specialized mainly in legal texts of all kinds, but still tend to undertake other translation jobs occasionally. I translate from English into German or French and vice versa.

Attending a good translation graduate programme is the essential precondition to become a good translator nowadays. I studied at Monterey Institute in California, which is without a doubt one of the best translation schools in the US. Among the highest ranking in the US are also Kent State University and University of Texas, Dallas. In Europe, the best translation education can be acquired at FTSK Germersheim, University of Mainz, Germany. Several good translation schools may also be found in France and Switzerland, for instance, Ecole Supérieure d’Interprètes et de Traducteurs (ESIT) in Paris and École de Traduction et d’Interprétation (ETI) in Geneva.

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