The Association of Translators and Interpreters of Florida (ATIF), together with the Spanish Language Division (SPD) of the American Translators Association (ATA) and the Miami Dade College Eduardo J. Padron Campus (MDCEPC)*, will present Spring Into Action 2020, an international conference in Miami, Florida. In an effort to share more information about some of our presenters and organizers, we will be publishing a series of interviews. Below is our conversation with Glenda Obando, President of the Association of Translators and Interpreters of Florida (ATIF).
Please tell us about your background. You have been a translator and interpreter for many years.
After some false starts at the university, I realized that I wanted to combine my interests in languages (Spanish & French), computers and the law. I started the T&I Program at Florida International University as a working student while being mentored by a great colleague and friend—Ms. Ida Alvarez, a Sworn Translator from Buenos Aires, Argentina. Initially, I was more of a SPENG translator specializing in computer-related materials and legal translations.
What major changes have you seen in the U.S. related to our profession?
There were not as many places in the U.S. as today and obviously no online/distance academic programs where an aspiring T&I student could get the academic education foundation. One of my best decisions as a freelancing translator was deciding to attend my first ATA Conference back in 1992 in San Diego, CA. I got to network as well as learn from many great translators and interpreters. It opened up my world view on what I could do in the T&I profession.
As the past treasurer, and now president of the Association of Translators and Interpreters of Florida (ATIF), you have had the enormous task of helping with the organization of this year’s In Miami Spring into Action event—as well as with the 2018 event—in collaboration with the Spanish Language Division (SPD) of the American Translators Association (ATA), and Miami Dade College Eduardo J. Padron Campus (former MDCIC)*. What has been your experience working with these organizations? Would you recommend to other ATA chapters or universities that they work this way? Why are we having this event in Miami again?
It has been a great experience working with such talented and knowledgeable organizations. Rosario Charo Welle’s ATA-SPD leadership and savvy ATA-SPD group made the SIA Organizing Committee a pleasurable, respectful and problem-solving collaboration, where egos were never a deterrent. The goal of having a great conference of top presenters for both the ATA-SPD and ATIF membership was the number-one priority. The Miami-Dade College-Padrón Campus is centrally located and its personnel for this upcoming Spring into Action have been excellent in their support and facilities.
“Whether a newcomer to our profession or an experienced one, the personal and professional enrichment, the inspiring motivation or recharging of love for our respective professions and the diverse knowledge that Spring into Action 2020 provides are some of its most important outcomes.”
There are many more T&I conferences that will be held in 2020, all over the world, catering to varying knowledge levels, networking needs, and relaxation opportunities and budgets. Why is Spring into Action different?
Spring into Action 2020 (SIA 2020) is the place to attend in order to get preeminent professional development and education from the top presenters as well as those who are at the avant-garde of our T&I professions.
One of the main considerations in going to any conference is the expense of attending. However, Miami is one of the major gateways to the world, so travel, meals, and lodgings can be adapted to any budget. The additional benefits to anyone attending would be the great Miami weather and the return on the small investment that any attendee acquires from the plethora of great and diverse workshops to choose from and learn.
Why is Spring into Action important for a translator or interpreter who is just starting his/her career? What do you think experienced translators will take away from participating in this event?
Whether a newcomer to our profession or an experienced one, the personal and professional enrichment, the inspiring motivation or recharging of love for our respective professions and the diverse knowledge that Spring into Action 2020 provides are some of its most important outcomes.
For beginner translators and/or interpreters, the networking and real-world educational opportunities are priceless. For experienced T&I professionals, reconnecting and networking with old and new friends, learning from our featured presenters—Palabras Mayores, Dr. Alexander Rainof, Dr. Pablo Mugüerza—and many other experts in diverse areas in this great Florida weather will be the ultimate reward.
Pilar Saslow is an English to Spanish translator and interpreter. For the past 34 years, she has helped Fortune 1000 companies, government agencies, health and beauty businesses and consumer products companies reach Spanish speakers in the U.S. and Latin America. She has also volunteered her time since the SPD was established in 1996 and was the first editor of Intercambios. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
*DISCLAIMER: Miami Dade College Eduardo J. Padron Campus (MDCEPC) is providing space at the Miami Dade College Eduardo J. Padron Campus (MDCEPC) as a professional courtesy to the American Translators Association (ATA)’s Spanish Language Division (SPD) and the Association of Translators and Interpreters of Florida (ATIF) for the event “Spring into Action 2020” to be held March 20-22, 2020. MDCEPC is not responsible for the content, statements, or opinions expressed in the event, and is hereby held harmless from any and all liability arising from said event.