In 2006, three women working in the growing field of localization in Silicon Valley became friends, looking for mutual support and collaboration.
Today, the organization they founded 2 years later, Women in Localization, has over 10,000 members spread across 30 chapters worldwide. And one of those founders, Eva Klaudinyova, is now Program Chair for the Institute’s Translation and Localization Management program.
On the 15th anniversary of the organization, Multilingual Magazine profiled the organization in an article aptly named “Community is Strength.” Under Professor Klaudinyova’s sponsorship, Middlebury Institute launched its own chapter of Women in Localization in 2020. This first student-led chapter regularly hosts speakers and events that are open to individuals of all genders. Alumni go on to be active members or volunteers in chapters across the wider Women in Localization network.
”It is an incredible opportunity to bridge one of the biggest achievements of my personal and professional lives, Women in Localization, and my alma mater and current employer, the Middlebury Institute. Teaching and mentoring others has been my life-long passion, and it’s been very fulfilling to be able to not just pass on my knowledge and experience in the classroom, but also help shape a new generation of future leaders every single year through the sponsorship and mentorship of the (so far) only student-led chapter of Women in Localization. We are fervently hoping that other academic institutions in the world will follow our example and apply to start a chapter at their university or graduate school,” said Klaudinyova, who is an alum of the Institute and speaks Slovak, English, Czech and German.
Over more than two decades in the localization industry, she’s led teams at multiple Silicon Valley companies and become a frequent speaker and presenter at industry events and conferences. She was featured in the March 2022 issue of Multilingual as one of 52 women driving the language industry.
Women in Localization volunteers and members are eligible for a guaranteed 25% scholarship for Middlebury Institute’s online or on-site degree programs and single courses related to the field of localization management.
“I was first drawn to the various Women in Localization events in Silicon Valley when I saw how those events provided opportunities for my MIIS students to create meaningful connections with the women leading the language and localization field,” Winnie Heh told Multilingual Magazine. Heh is the current Institute career advisor for students studying translation, interpretation and localization management and the current secretary for Women in Localization.
“Having worked in other professional fields, I have rarely seen such welcoming openness to newcomers. I recognized Women in Localization as a unique trend-setting and tone-setting organization in our field.”