| by Andrew Gatland

News Stories

Taubitz, Leon
Leon Taubitz (left) accepts his award for translation in English and German at the annual United Nations St. Jerome Translation Contest. 

Conference interpretation student Leon Taubitz MACI ’23 recently won the prestigious United Nations St. Jerome Translation Contest for German.

The annual contest celebrates multilingualism and highlights the important role that translation plays in the work of the United Nations and in the world at large.

Taubitz, concentrating on English and German translation, accepted his prize at the UN headquarters on October 4 in Vienna, Austria. On his submission, Taubitz says he chose to translate “a rather humorous article in the Irish Times that was full of irony and figures of speech, making it challenging to translate.” After his graduation from the Middlebury Institute, Taubitz says he aims to become an English-German translator and interpreter with his dream job involving creative translation or transcreation.

“He’s an excellent student who can make a translation sound natural,” says Andrea Hofmann-Miller, associate professor of German translation and interpretation. “He always considers the context, cultural nuances, and idiomatic expressions of both English and German.” 

Numerous students and alumni from the Institute have won awards in the contest. Previous winners since 2017 include Shuai (Ivy) Wang MATLM ’17 (Chinese), Amy Mendenhall MACI ’18 (English), Jem Walker MATI ’21 (French), Hilary Ancel-James MAT ’03 (Chinese), Theresa Waldhäusl MATI ’19 (German), Matthew Ross MACI ’20 (French), Magdalena Kotzurek MATI ’20 (German), Rachel Echeto MAT ’20 (Spanish), Zilin Cui MACI ’18 (Chinese), and Kunyuan (Lawrence) Chen MACI ’17 (Chinese).