My lecture for the Arab School of Translation The House of Wisdom: 10 tips for young interpreters and translators

It was my pleasure and honour to be invited by the Arab School of Translation the House of Wisdom to deliver an online lecture on 10 tips for young interpreters/translators. These are some pieces of advice I would give my own 10-15 years younger self. Hope they can helo students and new graduates to jump start their career!

The lecture is available here


The two days jam-packed with most interesting presentations from field experts and conference interpreters within the UTIC Interpreting track have past in a blink of an eye: Victoria Moroz, Anna Ivanchenko, Alyona Vlasenko, Iryna Vizir and the whole UTIC team – thank you so much for this celebration of our profession. Thanks to your outstanding organization even we, online participants, felt totally engaged in the event.

For me the Conference started with the brilliant presentation by Jonathan Downie who revived hope and faith in the profession of an interpreter by expressing confidence that the future depends on us and the better quality we can provide the weaker chance AI stands: “To beat the bots we have to do better than the bots”. It was followed by Evgeny Lobanov’s very comprehensive presentation on how to adjust your speech to simultaneous interpretation (all the potential clients should watch this!!) and Daria Shchegolkova’s story about how to become an interpreter, the process, schools, experience, etc – very useful for young interpreters, especially those learning Spanish! After lunch Marklen Konurbayev told us about the ranking and benchmarking system he is developing now, which aroused a lot of questions and lively interest from the participants. Svitlana Bregman then spoke about quality criteria in interpreting (very important indeed!) and how to deal with the unexpected. The last presentation before ours was by Andrei Besedin talking about 10 lessons learned from Covid-19 pandemic – very relevant and pressing issues, could not agree more with everything Andrei said, strongly recommend to watch the record! And last but not least was our presentation with Maha El-Metwally on RSI: thanks everyone who managed to save the energy till the end of the day and was with us! It was the first time Maha and I worked together and we had actually only 3 days to prepare a joint presentation – but it was definitely worth it, thank you, Maha, for such an exciting new experience! Our presentation was followed by an interactive Zoom session where we could answer all the questions from online participants and discussed real life cases in groups. Thanks to all the participants – if you read this, please, leave a comment under this post for us to connect and stay in touch!

This was the first extremely intensive and by the end overwhelming (3 hours of RSI talks in total!!) day. Speaking online proved to be so tiresome that I barely managed to wake up the next day – but I did, could not miss the first hit presentation by Anna Ivanchenko and Dmytro Shapochka on medical interpreting: learned a lot, very helpful to those who aspire to become medical interpreters! I totally agree that you should consider making a series of such presentations in whatever format. Then Andrew Liashenko delivered a super-informative speech on diplomatic interpreting: a separate world with its own rules you have to know to work here. It was followed by a presentation on how to have it all: the motherhood and freelance by Vikoriya Telyashenko: since I am a mother of 2 myself, I could totally relate to that! Very useful tips for young (and not so young) mothers from an experienced translator. Of course, for an interpreter, especially remote interpreter, it all looks a bit differently, but still liked the presentation tremendously! After lunch I watched the presentation on interpreting Asian languages – Japanese and Korean in particular – by Anton Shpigunov and Tanya Vodyanitska. Since I learned Japanese and know something about Japanese culture, all the speakers said about Asian mentality and behavior was close to home and I think it was of interest to many – for the general audience as well. And a little later we had a fantastic presentation by Sarah Cuminetti on social media marketing for interpreters: I did not know the subject could be so engaging and exciting! Before the presentation was over several participants, myself included, already initiated and added to the cascade tweeting, which was so much fun! And the last presentation today in the interpreting track was the one by Rob Davidson on the future of MICE in the post-Covid world – and guess what? I ended up winning the quiz and got the prize: Essays on Conference Interpreting by James Nolan. Haven’t won anything for quite some time, felt really great, thanks for the valuable prize and for the game too! Well, hasn’t it been a super productive day for all of us?

There is only one thing I am sorry about – the fact that I miss all the fun and networking after the official agenda….Definetly going to visit UTIC in person next year!

Check out our presentation on RSI here

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