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Robert Vega, Director FAC 18 / 2304 Whitis Ave. Stop G6200 78712-1508 • 512-471-7900

Translation and Interpretation

For both translation and interpretation work, having a broad knowledge base in addition to your languages is useful.

Where do translators and interpreters work?

The largest employer of translators and interpreters is the federal government, but they are also needed in court systems, state and municipal governments, and international agencies in addition to private companies. Working at the United Nations is perhaps the pinnacle of translation and interpretation, but as a result, these jobs are very competitive. In addition to working full-time for a government agency or private company, many translators and interpreters are contractors or freelancers.

There are more professional opportunities for interpreters over translators. To succeed in interpretation, you need to have excellent interpersonal skills.

How can I prepare for a career as a translator?

Translators usually work from their second language into their native language. You can hone your translation skills by taking classes in journalism or technical writing. If you are serious about starting translation work, professionals recommend that you invest in Trados or similar software, but know that this software can cost upwards of $500.

Action Steps

Resources 


Lionbridge: a consulting firm employing linguists and foreign languages specialists on a full-time and freelance basis
Rosetta Stone Jobs
American Translator Association - for translators and interpreters
Austin Area Translators and Interpreters Association
The American Association of Language Specialists - for translators and interpreters
linguistlist.org - maintains job list for linguists, both academic and non-academic jobs
FBI Linguists
  

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