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“The key terms that come up after this invigorating conference are collaboration and distance learning,” says professor Kayoko Takeda, head of the Japanese translating and interpreting program at the Monterey Institute of International Studies and one of the organizers of the Monterey Forum. Last week‘s biennial Forum brought Monterey Institute faculty and students together with close to fifty outside scholars and language professionals to talk about current issues in their field.

The third Monterey Forum was held on April 8-9 and was dedicated to innovation in the field of translator, interpreter, and localizer education. The use of technology was a hot topic, and in particular the opportunities new technology offers for collaboration among professionals, for example through social networks and cloud platforms. Issues related to “machine translation” and “post-editing” were the main subjects of the student panel. Technology also plays a large role in distance learning, another common topic of discussion.

Twenty-seven local seventh graders in a dual-immersion program at Branciforte Middle School in Santa Cruz received a glimpse into the field of international language professionals when they attended the Forum as special guests. They had the opportunity to observe simultaneous interpreting in Spanish and then try it out themselves in a mock interpreting session with Monterey Institute students.

A Monterey Institute Japanese Translation and Interpretation student received a unique opportunity as a result of his simultaneous interpretation of the conference. One of the speakers was so impressed that she arranged for him to meet with the head of interpretation at the International Labour Organization, when he will be in Geneva as a visiting WIPO fellow next summer. Not a bad start to life after graduation!

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Jason Warburg

Eva Gudbergsdottir