Here is a double feature on new member benefits and an overview of upcoming webinars. Enjoy!   What is your professional association doing for you? - By Aimee Benavides, NAJIT Chair Professional associations have an important role in the lives of those they serve. In the case of NAJIT, our...

No, NAJIT has not gone into the dictionary business. We are just trying to make things clear so folks know what they mean exactly when they use a word like "translator," or "interpreter." We are providing definitions that will, we hope, help those who need our...

Yes, I heard someone use that word during the NAJIT conference this past May 14 & 15 in San Antonio, Texas: Renaissance. And it was so fitting! The energy in the air was electrifying. The conference attendants were excited about the conference topics, and very...

It’s the last week of April and NAJIT’s Annual Conference is just around the corner. Before we know it, we will be in San Antonio, polishing skills, learning what’s new in the field, catching up with old friends and making new ones. And although I...

I really have no life. No. Seriously. If I am not interpreting in court, I am translating at home. And if I am not doing some work for pay, I am doing voluntary work...

Part I: Big Decisions Ahead

By Melinda Gonzalez-Hibner As many of you know, NAJIT launched a highly respected judiciary interpreter and translator certification program in 2001. During the years that the certification exam was offered, thirty talented colleagues attained NAJIT certification through testing, and four of its creators were grandfathered in. The last time that NAJIT offered the oral component of the certification exam was in 2012. Since then, we have been debating the pros and cons of continuing to offer this hard-won and highly respected credential. On the one hand, it embodies the maturity of court interpreters in the United States: it is a self-financed, rigorous and comprehensive tool to assess the required skills and competencies of our profession at the highest level. It is a test created by interpreters for interpreters.  On the other hand, it is expensive to administer, hard to pass, and the Consortium for Language Access to the Courts has irrevocably and dramatically altered the credentialing landscape for court interpreters. The cost-benefit ratio, and perhaps even the relevance of the NAJIT certification, is in question. There are many who feel that the NAJIT certification exam should not be offered ever again. There are many others who feel that it should continue to be offered, given the sizable investment that was made and the value of the credential for the profession at large. What should NAJIT do? One thing is clear: we must decide the fate of the NAJIT certification exam together, as an organization. The Board of Directors cannot make this decision alone. And we must all be as informed as we can before we make any decision. To that end, Janis Palma and Bethany Korp-Edwards have staked out their positions. Both have great merit. Please read on and decide for yourself!

“It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.” Harry S Truman (attributed)

I have no earthly idea whether Mr. Truman actually said that, but it’s a good sentiment, isn’t it? Stop right now and think of three things you wish you knew. Me, I wish I knew how to play an instrument, how my car runs, and what my toddler means when he grins at me and exclaims, "Deeesssssssh!" (Seriously, folks, he's been doing it for a month. Anyone?)  Done! Three things in ten seconds. Unfortunately, when I talk to people about interpreter conferences—both ones they’ve attended and ones they decide not to—I frequently hear the same complaints. “There’s nothing for me there.” “I don’t need to know any of that.” “I’ve heard that all before.” And in fact, they may be right: maybe if you’ve been going to interpreter conferences for decades, there’s nothing being presented at most of them that you haven’t already heard. This year, NAJIT wants to change that. Our wonderful Conference Committee is putting together a special program for the 2015 conference in Atlanta. During each session, one presentation will be earmarked as relevant for interpreters who work primarily in education, and at least one will be earmarked as an “advanced” session.  “But Bethany,” you say, “Who is going to teach these advanced sessions?”

- By Gio Lester Why would entrepreneurial individuals create a business to help others like them make money? That seems to go against the very core of Capitalism. But does it? And what are non-profits, actually? Well, the truth is that non-profit endeavors and money making are...

- by Gio Lester © 2014 Title VI was devised and implemented in the second third of the 20th century. Since then, our world has changed and so has our society. The demands and profiles of the services and tasks targeted by Title VI have also changed. We...

How and when did you get into the field of Interpreting?  What is your background? I had some experience with interpreting and translating when I was an office manager and trainer for a direct sales company in the late 80’s and early 90’s in Miami, FL....