Stitches of Connection: The Small, Welcoming, and Tight-Knit Interpreter Community in Puerto Rico

In the heart of Puerto Rico, a hidden treasure, thrives a small, close community of interpreters dedicated to the art of breaking down language barriers. Over the past year, since I embarked on my journey into the world of interpretation and became certified, I’ve had the privilege of experiencing the unique charm of this interpreter community. Its warmth, welcoming spirit, and extraordinary ability to make everyone feel at home have left a lasting impression on me.

Puerto Rico, a land where the blend of Spanish and English echoes in daily life, knows firsthand the indispensable role of skilled interpreters. This enchanting Caribbean island is a melting pot of cultures, a place where languages and traditions intersect, creating a vibrant and multifaceted society. Within this rich cultural mosaic, a unique group of interpreters has emerged, bridging the gap between worlds, not merely as language professionals but as cultural ambassadors.

What sets this interpreter community apart? Its exceptionally welcoming nature. As a newcomer, I was received with open arms and swiftly embraced by this close-knit group. It is a fantastic group that recognizes and understands the importance of fostering connections and creating a supportive environment for interpreters of all experience levels. Whether you’re a novice interpreter or a seasoned professional, there’s a place for you here.

Collaboration triumphs over competition in this incredible community. While interpreting can be fiercely competitive in other parts of the world, here, my colleagues’ emphasis is on working together. This unique attitude nurtures an environment where the people you work with become more than just colleagues; they become your partners, supporters, and friends, always ready to step in and assist one another. This bond of unity strengthens the very fabric of the community, making it a truly exceptional place to grow as a professional and as a person.

In essence, this small, welcoming, and tight-knit interpreter community in Puerto Rico is a family bound together by their shared love for the craft of interpretation and their shared goal of creating long-lasting connections. Their example will be with me everywhere I go, reminding me that interpreting is not merely about translating words but also about forging relationships that transcend the boundaries of language and culture. It’s a testament to the immense power of unity, collaboration, and the celebration of diversity in a world that can often feel fragmented.

As I reflect on my journey into the heart of this unique group of interpreters, I can’t help but be grateful. It’s a place where every day is an opportunity to learn, grow, and connect with others from different walks of life. This community’s warm embrace, dedication to inclusivity, and commitment to creating unity out of diversity are a source of inspiration for me. As I put my grain of sand into making our world more connected and harmonious, I will take with me everything I have learned from my Puerto Rican colleagues and remember that the power of unity and collaboration can not only transcend language, culture, and borders but also turn strangers into family.

Dennise A. Serrano was born and raised in a Spanish-speaking household in Puerto Rico. She was the only English-speaking member of her family, and the language-related struggles her family members faced motivated her to become a professional translator and interpreter. She obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Pre-Translation and a Master’s in Translation from the University of Puerto Rico. She currently works as a freelance translator and interpreter. Contact her at

Featured photo (cropped) “Flags of Puerto Rico and USA” by Arturo de La Barrera at Wikimedia Commons, under a CC BY-SA 2.0 license. Body photos: “Ponce Puerto Rico port aerial view” by Tony Santana, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, at Wikimedia Commons (photo in the public domain); and “Catedral de San Juan Bautista de Puerto Rico” by author Daderot at Wikimedia Commons (photo in the public domain).

3 thoughts on “Stitches of Connection: The Small, Welcoming, and Tight-Knit Interpreter Community in Puerto Rico”

  1. Gloria Hughes says:

    Dear Dennise,

    Thank you for sharing your experience. It is certainly refreshing to work with and learn from welcoming and generous colleagues who value collaboration and support each other.

  2. Remedios Bashi says:

    Dennise, I’m so happy you’ve had this experience. This is what the interpreting professional community should be like anywhere in the world. Kudos to the PR interpreters!

  3. Hi, thanks for the post! I am very glad that you got into such a community of translators. It’s so cool that there is such a thing in Puerto Rico and it’s thriving! It seems to me that the atmosphere at work really affects the work itself, so it’s cool that you’re doing well. I haven’t heard about the Puerto Rican community yet. Thank you for covering this topic for other specialists and colleagues – I sometimes think that it is very important to know and see examples of what is good at work, and you can find contact with good people. And with a bad job, where terrible people can be also terrible and it’s OK, there’s always something better!

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