Issue 34, Vol 4 Fall 2017
Face to Face Board Meeting Summary Behind the Scenes: Leandra Williams Path to PhD Regional Conference Update CATIE Center Graduation to Certification
P u bl i c at i o n
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Re g i s t r y
I n t e r p r e t e r s
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D e a f,
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Meet Your Cover Artist! Jessica Alter Jessi is a native of Madison, Wisconsin. She was first exposed to ASL through course offerings at her local high school. She completed the Interpreter Training Program at Milwaukee Area Technical College in 2011 and has been working as a K-12 educational interpreter since then. She has worked in elementary, middle, and high school environments. Recently, she has gained employment as a Video Interpreter, providing VRS services to Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing individuals throughout the U.S. She is currently working toward obtaining a bachelor’s degree in political science. Jessi looks forward to working in various settings as her career progresses. Jessi’s cover art aims to convey the wide range of subject matter that educational interpreters encounter in their day to day work. Additionally, the text, “educate” and “empower,” was included to emphasize what she feels are the the guiding principals of her work as an educational interpreter.
Want to submit your artwork or photography for a chance to be our next cover design? Send us your work to firstname.lastname@example.org!
VIEWS Volume 34 • Issue 4
MISSION The Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf strives to advocate for best practices in interpreting, professional development for practitioners and for the highest standards in the provision of interpreting services for diverse users of languages that are signed or spoken. VISION By honoring its past and innovating for the future, RID envisions a world where: • Its members recognize and support the linguistic rights of all Deaf people as human rights, equal to those of users of spoken languages; • Deaf people and their values are vital to and visible in every aspect of RID; • Interpreted interaction between individuals who use signed and spoken languages are as viable as direct communication; • The interpreting profession is formally recognized and is advanced by rigorous professional development, standards of conduct, and credentials. DIVERSITY STATEMENT The Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) understands the necessity of multicultural awareness and sensitivity. Therefore, as an organization, we are committed to diversity both within the organization and within the profession of sign language interpreting. Our commitment to diversity reflects and stems from our understanding of present and future needs of both our organization and the profession. We recognize that in order to provide the best service as the national certifying body among signed and spoken language interpreters, we must draw from the widest variety of society with regards to diversity in order to provide support, equality of treatment, and respect among interpreters within the RID organization. Therefore, RID defines diversity as differences which are appreciated, sought, and shaped in the form of the following categories: gender identity or expression, racial identity, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, deaf or hard of hearing status, disability status, age, geographic locale (rural vs. urban), sign language interpreting experience, certification status and level, and language bases (e.g. those who are native to or have acquired ASL and English, those who utilize a signed system, among those using spoken or signed languages) within both the profession of sign language interpreting and the RID organization. To that end, we strive for diversity in every area of RID and its Headquarters. We know that the differences that exist among people represent a 21st century population and provide for innumerable resources within the sign language interpreting field. Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc. 333 Commerce Street, Alexandria, VA 22314 (703) 838-0030 V • (571)-257-3957 VP• www.rid.org (703) 838-0454 Fax • www.rid.org
RID BOARD OF DIRECTORS President Melvin Walker M.Ed., CRC, CI & CT, NAD V email@example.com Vice President Sandra Maloney, M.A., CI & CT, SC:L firstname.lastname@example.org Secretary Joshua Pennise, M.A., CI & CT, NIC Adv email@example.com Treasurer Carolyn Ball, PhD, CI & CT, NIC firstname.lastname@example.org Member at Large Len Roberson, Ph.D.; SC:L, CI & CT email@example.com Deaf Member at Large Branton Stewart CDI, CLIP-R firstname.lastname@example.org Region I Representative To Be Determined Region II Representative Brenda Sellers, NIC, CI & CT email@example.com
Region III Representative
To Be Determined
Region IV Representative Sonja Smith, NIC firstname.lastname@example.org Region V Representative Michele “Mish” Ktejik, NIC, SC:L email@example.com RID HEADQUARTERS STAFF Deputy Director Elijah Sow firstname.lastname@example.org
Director of Finance and Operations
Director of Member Services and Communications
Jennifer Apple email@example.com Neal Tucker firstname.lastname@example.org
Director of Standards Ryan Butts and Practices email@example.com Communications Manager
Julia Wardle firstname.lastname@example.org
Professional Development Manager
Carol Turner email@example.com
Ashley Holladay firstname.lastname@example.org
Communications Maxann Keller Coordinator email@example.com Accounting Specialist Joshua Sechman firstname.lastname@example.org
Accounting Specialist II Tong Rogers email@example.com
Communications Jenelle Bloom Specialist firstname.lastname@example.org
Member Services Khianti Thomas Specialist email@example.com
Operations Specialist Charlotte Kinney firstname.lastname@example.org
Face to Face Board Meeting Summary
Behind the Scenes: Leandra Williams Path to PhD
Regional Conference Update
CATIE Center Graduation to Certification
VIEWS Volume 34 â€¢ Issue 4
issue in this
Governance 6 8 10 19 23
Letter from the Editor President's Report: Relying On Our Collective Grit Face-to-Face Board Meeting Summary Outgoing Board: Past President Dawn Whitcher Meet Your Deaf Member At Large (DMAL): Branton Stewart
Features 12 20 24 32 36
Smoothing the Seams by Jenee Petri-Swanson Street Leverage Interviews RID VP Sandra Maloney So, What Do You Want to Do With This Degree? by Leandra Williams Finding Your Way From Graduation to Certification by the CATIE Center Thinking Outside of the Box... Deaf Interpreter Training by Keri Brooks
Columns and News 14 18 23 31 36 40 42
A Critical Lens by Jonathan Webb Dear Encounters by Brenda Cartwright Celebrating Diversity Regional Conference Update WASLI North America Update by Liz Mendoza Member Spotlight: Jodi Upton Newly Certified and Reinstatements
To view all stories in ASL on Youtube, visit our Fall VIEWS playlist HERE www.rid.org
LETTER FROM THE EDITOR
Letter From the Editor! My grandmother always commented on how fast I seemed to be moving through life. She said, “You sure don’t like to let the grass grow under your feet!” Ever changing and ever moving forward - the transformation of VIEWS, I think, has kept this same pace during its lifespan. VIEWS has metamorphosed over the years… growth spurts and coming of age, forays into law, education, tactile, and medical fields, periods of serious reflection and entertaining narrative.
YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/KfPLB4od4O4
All of these milestones have led VIEWS to its place today as the premier RID publication. VIEWS is more relevant, professional, and bilingual/bicultural than ever before. You - the members - are what have brought this amazing repository of information and research and stories together in VIEWS. The Board of Editors is an invested group of members who are working to make VIEWS more accessible and meaningful to contributors, viewers, and stakeholders. Already we are seeing an increase in average time spent reading VIEWS - meaning that readers are getting into more of the content in depth. We want to continue to expand the amount of readers and interactivity (number of link-clicks) that we see in our statistics. Right now about half of the membership is represented in our statistics, most of whom consume the publication in English more than ASL. Like was said in our recent VIEWS print survey, we hope that the membership can take advantage of the bilingual, digital access to resources and narratives in VIEWS. VIEWS is by interpreters for interpreters. I believe that continuing to build this publication in quality and readership will weave a thread that ties this community together. I encourage you to look at VIEWS as it is today, considering how far we’ve come and how much more we can do. Being a part of VIEWS not only empowers you to support your colleagues in research and practicum, but also to take part in a bigger, positive change throughout RID. The content of this issue of VIEWS is new and applicable to your professional goals and experiences. So read, submit, and help us to turn over this new leaf for our organization, and ultimately, our VIEWers! Finally, a huge thank you to GoReact for the use of their platform in our peer review process! In our efforts to reduce language bias, we have instituted video-based review for our authors so that feedback can be specific, time-stamped, and bilingual. GoReact has also greatly helped interpreter education programs across the country to facilitate ASL-based instruction and engagement in the classroom. We are excited to collaborate with them! Julia Wardle Editor-in-Chief 6
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Vision: VIEWS, RID’s digital publication, is dedicated to the interpreting profession. As a part of RID’s strategic goals, we focus on providing interpreters with the educational tools they need to excel at their profession. VIEWS is about inspiring, or even instigating, thoughtful discussions among practitioners. With the establishment of the VIEWS Board of Editors, the featured content in this publication is peer-reviewed and standardized according to our bilingual review process. VIEWS is on the leading edge of bilingual publications for English and ASL. In this way, VIEWS helps to bridge the gap between interpreters and clients and facilitate equality of language. This publication represents a rich history of knowledge-sharing in an extremely diverse profession. As an organization, we value the experiences and expertise of interpreters from every cultural, linguistic, and educational background. VIEWS seeks to provide information to researchers and stakeholders about these specialty fields and groups in the interpreting profession. We aim to explore the interpreter’s role within this demanding social and political environment by promoting content with complex layers of experience and meaning. While we publish updates on our website and social media platforms, unique information from the following areas can only be found in VIEWS: • • • • • • •
Both research- and peer-based articles/columns Interpreting skill-building and continuing education opportunities Local, national, and international interpreting news Reports on the Certification Program RID committee and Member Sections news New publications available from RID Press News and highlights from RID Headquarter
Submissions: VIEWS publishes articles on matters of interest and concern to the membership. Submissions that are essentially interpersonal exchanges, editorials or statements of opinion are not appropriate as articles and may remain unpublished, run as a letter to the editor or as a position paper. Submissions that are simply the description of programs and services in the community with no discussion may also be redirected to a more archival platform on the website. Articles should be 1,800 words or fewer. Unsigned articles will not be published. Please contact the editor of VIEWS if you require more space. RID reserves the right to limit the quantity and frequency of articles published in VIEWS written by a single author(s). Receipt by RID of a submission does not guarantee its publication. RID reserves the right to edit, excerpt or refuse to publish any submission. Publication of an advertisement does not constitute RID’s endorsement or approval of the advertiser, nor does RID guarantee the accuracy of information given in an advertisement. Advertising specifications can be found at www.rid.org, or by contacting the editor. All editorial, advertising, submission and permission inquiries should be directed to (703) 838-0030, (703) 838-0454 fax, or email@example.com. Copyright: VIEWS is published quarterly by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc. Statements of fact or opinion are the responsibility of the authors alone and do not necessarily represent the opinion of RID. The author(s), not RID, is responsible for the content of submissions published in VIEWS. © 2017 the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc. All rights reserved. VIEWS Board of Editors Jonathan Webb (Chair), CI and CT, NIC Advanced Erica Alley, Ph.D, NIC-Advanced Michael B. Ballard, M.A. Christina Healy, Ph.D, CI and CT, Ed:K-12 Su Kyong Isakson, MA, NIC, Ed:K-12 Lianne Moccia, M.Ed., CI/CT, TC Jill Radford, M.A. www.rid.org
Relying on Our Collective Grit
Melvin Walker, M.Ed., CRC, CI and CT, NAD V, RID President, Interim ED
A lot has been happening all around us and across the country in recent weeks—hurricanes, flooding, fires, mass murders, racism and social injustice, sexual misconduct, gender power imbalances, national and international political unrest. It is overwhelming. We find ourselves struggling to make sense of it all—trying to determine what to do in response. It is certainly a time when we need an extra measure of compassion, empathy and grit. It is grit in particular that will equip us with the perseverance and resilience we need to overcome what may seem like insurmountable ob- YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/iZP1e3Vtv_8 stacles or challenges. We can express grit through determination and optimism that leads to positive action. Grit is a reflection of our character as individuals, as a people, and as a nation. Let us encourage one another to respond to the great needs and injustices around us however possible—both immediately and long-term. Some of these broader social issues are evident within our association, too. Members of the Deaf and interpreting communities have been impacted by recent disasters and require our assistance. Let’s help in any way we can. We also see evidence of political unrest, power imbalances and social injustice in our organizational structures, systems, and behaviors. Let’s identify, recognize, and reduce or eliminate these! That was a main focus of the Leadership Track in our 2017 LEAD Together Conference. As an organization, we began the difficult but necessary conversations that enable us to move us forward together. The engagement, optimism, and grit of those members and volunteer leaders allowed them to generate recommendations for addressing and removing a range of institutional barriers. The end result of that process was a set of 61 recommendations and over 220 related action items for the strategic planning process in which the Board will participate November 1-5, 2017. The documented recommendations and action items were circulated to the conference attendees and the general membership several weeks ago and feedback was invited. http://www.rid.org/2017/10/reminder-conference-strategic-recommendations/ There are six recommendations that were most frequently cited. These are not listed in any particular priority, but each was identified repeatedly in plenary sessions and small group discussions during the Leadership Track of the conference. Recommendation 1: Strengthen the base of RID—the Affiliate Chapters specifically—through targeted training, a full-time staff person to assist with Affiliate Chapter development and compliance, regular meetings between the chapter presidents and their respective Regional Representatives, and a network of Affiliate Chapter leaders similar to a community of practice which allows for discussion and support around common or unique issues at the local level. 8
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PRESIDENT’S REPORT Recommendation 2: Actively engage with diverse Deaf Community partners/organizations for the purpose of advancing common goals and needs, sharing resources and expertise, and ensuring that the Deaf perspective and the needs of the Deaf Community are being addressed in RID programs and activities. Recommendation 3: Address governance issues focused on a restructuring of RID and/or modifications to the Bylaws to create more diverse member representation, including voting on Board matters by Member YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/szfM_9KF1jo Sections (MS) and Affiliate Chapters (AC). These recommendations may indicate the readiness of the membership to shift to a delegate assembly somehow structured around the MS and ACs of the organization. Recommendation 4: Provide leadership and Power and Privilege training, available in multiple formats, and prepare volunteer leaders, facilitators, and trainers to make the trainings widely available to the membership and to community partners. Partnering with the Deaf Community and other interpreter organizations is encouraged as it will benefit both sides and create a win-win solution for impacted communities. Partnering organizations may also have expertise or resources to contribute to the training development process. Recommendation 5: Create a repository of resources, inclusive of training materials, advocacy resources, member/student recruitment materials, forms, Standard Practice Papers, and related resources for ACs, MS, CDIs, students, and members in general. The repository should also be accessible by community partners. Recommendation 6: Develop a comprehensive communication/PR plan with the assistance of professional consultation. The plan should engage ACs, who can assist with information dissemination and offer the membership a clear understanding of when to expect communication, what types of information will be communicated, where to find the information, and options for how to access the information. The information should be transparent, direct, and available in ASL, English and Spanish. The PR plan should also address how input from ACs, MS, councils, and members in general will be solicited and considered PRIOR to decisions by the Board of Directors which impact the organization and the membership. Addressing these six recommendations and the others that were generated, along with RID’s ongoing operational obligations, represents an ambitious agenda—albeit an important and critical one. Through the upcoming strategic planning process—which I discussed in more detail in the August 2017 issue of VIEWS—your elected Board members will determine overall priorities, available resources, and action items to pursue. When the 2018-2022 Strategic Plan is completed, it will be shared with volunteer leadership and the membership for review and feedback. The goal is to begin implementation of the plan as early as possible in the new year. This goal brings me back to the virtue of grit—a high moral standard that the RID Board of Directors will be relying upon as we enter the strategic planning process. We ask for your continued support, encouragement and feedback as we complete the process. RID’s volunteer leadership, staff, and many members remain dedicated and committed to our mission, core values, and potential. Together, we are determined to persevere through struggles and failure. We will continue to learn and grow from our failures and use those lessons as stepping stones to change and transformation. This will lead to our continued recovery and success. Let’s inspire one another with our collective grit and move forward together to make RID the best it can be! www.rid.org
Face-to-Face Board Meeting Summary November 2-5 Alexandria, VA
Vice President Sandra Maloney, CI and CT, SC:L Region V Rep Mish Ktejik, SC:L, NIC
SM: Hello! Vice President Maloney and Region V Representative Mish Ktejik here to provide you an update to the RID Board meeting that was held from Youtube Link:https://youtu.be/gv264sI50Ps November 2- 5, 2017 at RID Headquarters in Alexandria, VA. Although the meetings started on November 2nd, most of the Board arrived on November 1st to attend the NAD 2017 Breakthrough Awards Gala in downtown D.C. It was an inspirational, fun evening that gave us the opportunity to support NAD and it truly set the tone for our week together. MK: Iâ€™m Mish Ktejik, the Region V Representative. So after our Wednesday social night, we got to work Thursday morning. Really, the work started a month ago with you, the members. At the national conference, you gave us all of your ideas and recommendations - thirty-five pages worth! In that data, some common themes showed up, such as improving communications and member support. Another theme was increased involvement of the Affiliate Chapters. Affiliate Chapters are technically separate organizations from RID but the feedback showed a need for more involvement and guidance from RID. Members also asked us to review our governance structure and voting system. We currently operate under a system that was set up some time ago and seemingly no longer fits our current member needs or what more modern organizations are doing. For our strategic planning session, we hired a consultant to work with us. Krista Walker is amazing - she helped us stay on task and walked us through the process step by step. We discussed processes, results, and relationships. We looked at internal and external factors that influence one another and talked about everything from individual members to the organization as a whole and the needs of the community. We came up with some brave ideas. Now the question is, where do we go from here? SM: We knew coming into the meeting that we would not have a completed Strategic Plan at the end of our four days together. In order to complete the work, a writing team comprised of RID Board members and RID staff will work to take the themes we identified from the 2017 Conference Recommendations to create Strategies, Goals, and Objectives. Once completed, a draft of the Strategic Plan will be sent to the Board, Council of Elders, Deaf Advisory Council, and Diversity Council for review and revision. The writing team will create the final plan from those revisions to be completed by Spring 2018. The work will only begin at that point. Once we have a final plan, the Board will set both quarterly and annual reviews to ensure the plan is being implemented appropriately and the necessary resources are in place. Those reviews will occur during regular BOD meetings. 10
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FACETOFACE SUMMARY Lastly, the Executive Director position is still vacant. We will use what we have learned this week to update the position description. The updated description will be released in the coming weeks. If you are interested in applying or know someone who is qualified, you or they can contact President Walker by email at president@ rid.org for more information. There is a lot of work to be done and the Board is excited for what is to come in the next few months! MK: So what can you do? You can be involved! Stay aware of what is happening and the reasons behind it. I have a feeling some big changes are coming and we need you! RID Board Working Meeting and NAD Gala November 2, 2017
Smoothing the Seams By Jenee Petri-Swanson, NIC, TSC
In a fourth grade classroom, the teacher explains the history of local Native American tribes. The teacher refers to a map while narrating the collaborations and migrations of different tribes. Students receiving instruction directly in their native language (i.e. a hearing child in a mainstream setting or a Deaf/ASL user taught in ASL) are able to experience an important phenomenon known as seamless cognition. Through this process, students are able to effortlessly weave together the two types of simultaneous information they are receiving: the content and the visual aide. This instructional approach is commonplace; the teacher uses a visual aide to demonstrate what they are explaining verbally or in sign, and the students make connections between what is spoken or signed and what is shown. Frequently, when teachers instruct in this way, they will use deictic terms such as this, that, here, and there. Hearing students in a mainstream class hear the word ‘this’ at the exact moment the teacher points to its referent. They see where ‘over here’ means, and they know ‘what goes where’ because these ambiguous deictic terms are being co-presented with the exact, visual object or cue being represented. Therefore, processing the two pieces of information happens effortlessly - seamlessly. The same easy and meaningful access happens for Deaf students who use ASL and receive direct instruction in ASL. The instructor may use various methods to ensure seamless cognition for their students, including signing in front of or on top of a visual aid. Teachers may also direct students’ eye gaze 12
Youtube Link: https://youtu.be/fK-hZh_RKWk to the specific part of the visual aid they are referring to before, during, or after instruction. In both of these situations, students are able focus their energy on comprehending the content, making connections beyond the lesson, and have the mental resources available to look for deeper meaning. But what about the Deaf/ASL user receiving instruction via an interpreter? Deaf students receiving auditory information through visual interpretation lose the opportunity for seamless cognition unless the interpreter recognizes which referent correlates with the deictic term used and makes that information explicit. If ambiguous referents are presented and the interpreter simply signs the words verbatim, then the content and the visual information are severed. The Deaf student is made to work harder to form connections between the two separate streams of information. The resulting impact on Deaf students can be misunderstanding, frustration, and depleted mental resources which could otherwise be used for critical thinking and idea generation. In this case, the Deaf student is robbed of the opportunity to reach their full potential, and the class has missed the opportunity to learn from any ideas or contributions of their peer, had the Deaf student’s capacities not been tied up in unpacking the message. Meanwhile, hearing students attending the same presentation need not put forth any extra effort to comprehend the information. (continued on page 29)
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A CRITICAL LENS
A Critical Lens Jonathan Webb, PhD NIC-Adv, CI & CT Facilitator, Writer, Activist, Educator, Mentor
The Oxford Dictionary contains two primary definitions for the term agent. 1. A person who acts on behalf of another person or group. 2. A person or thing that takes an active role or produces a specified effect. In my experience there isn’t much direct and focused discussion around the notion of agency, or serving as Youtube Link: https://youtu.be/_YqMTtKSwV8 an agent, from general ASL/English interpreters or those serving in most specialty settings. Where this word frequently arises, however, is in the specialty field of legal interpreting. In this particular setting, understanding the role of agent is critical to the conservation of one’s constitutional rights. For example, when a proceedings interpreter enters a courtroom there is an understanding and practice that requires the interpreter to align themselves with the legal system. As an officer of the court, the interpreter is tasked with carrying out the demands of the system as well as those who are officiating the processes of the court. Standard and best practice determine this to mean the fidelity of the interpreter to the courtroom, the process, the communication, and the legal system. Simply, fidelity or allegiance to the Deaf person is In 2011, Dr. Jess Freeman King posited nine program different in a legal setting. prerequisites that can guide the discussion around educational placement for a child1 if the typically least restrictive environments of the residential How is this relative to educational interpreting, you school or day program are absolutely not an option. might ask. The answer might come better in the form Under each of these prerequisites, I pose questions of an additional question, or three: In educational in- for interpreters’ consideration when asked to work in terpreting, where does your allegiance lie? To whom hearing k-12 institutions with a minoritized population or what is your fidelity placed? To whom or what are of Deaf students - whether there be one or many. you an agent? When considering the Deaf student, please consider those with even a minimal possibility of growing up and embracing the Deaf community, culture, and ASL. We know that many of these children escape colonization, to a lesser or greater extent, and typically matriculate into the Deaf community at some point, often in college. While these young children 14
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A CRITICAL LENS
A Critical Lens Jonathan Webb, PhD NIC-Adv, CI & CT Facilitator, Writer, Activist, Educator, Mentor with hearing families may not currently embrace a Deaf identity, they will likely do so in adulthood. So whether the child uses ASL or is currently being colonized under oralism (or other such names), Signed English (which is a linguistic impossibility), or Cued Speech, these questions should be considered as an interpreter understands their long-term impact on the socialization, acculturation, education, and identity development of the child.1
How does your sign language increase or decrease in complexity relative to the childâ€™s age? Is the child regularly privy to language used by typical nativeASL users in the Deaf community? 3. Only teachers who are qualified/certified and have a respect for and understanding of Deaf culture should have deaf students in their classes.
As the interpreter in the classroom, how and when do 1. The program should include a critical mass of deaf you assist in determining if the teacher understand children (at least five per class) in order to provide and respects Deaf culture? for socialization, identity development, and language growth and enhancement. In what ways are you able to identify that a teacher has an understanding of and respect for Deaf culture? As an interpreter, are you willing to accept work at a school where there are less than five Deaf students in How do you as an interpreter demonstrate underthe classroom? standing of and respect for Deaf culture? When and in what ways do you exhibit or demonstrate Deaf culHow do you facilitate communication for the purpos- tural norms? es of socialization and identity development? 4. Only teachers who can communicate directly and Do you hold any responsibility for the language appropriately with deaf students should be utilized in growth and development of the Deaf child, and if classes with deaf children. yes, how does that play out? Additionally, as most interpreters are currently second language learners In what ways do you foster direct communication beof ASL, how do your actions impact the wider Deaf tween the teacher and Deaf students? community when modeling second language characAre you able to define the term appropriate in this teristics for a child with a native ASL birthright? statement, and how then do you foster appropriate 2. Homogeneous grouping possibilities should exist interaction? that will facilitate grouping by age, IQ, and linguistic What is your responsibility if the teacher does not competence. possess the ability to ever communicate directly and Because interpreters are often viewed as experts appropriately with the Deaf child? in culture and language, how do you assist in the decision-making process for how children are 1 To find a more comprehensive discussion of colonization and linguistically grouped? oralism, good reading includes The Mask of Benevolence: Dis-
How is your interpretation impacted, and how are the abling the Deaf Community, or Understanding Deaf Culture: Deaf children impacted, by your modified interpret- the Search for Deafhood. ing to account for IQ grouping? www.rid.org
A CRITICAL LENS 7. Only intelligence, achievement, and other place5. Deaf adult role models should be present on a reg- ment tests that have been normed on a deaf populaular basis in the educational process, either as admin- tion and administered by personnel who can communicate fluently with the deaf child should be used. istrators, teachers, or aides. In what ways do you adhere to the second tenet of the RID-NAD Code of Professional Conduct regarding assessing consumer needs and requesting support as the situation requires?
Have you asserted this need during the IEP process? If there happens to be a test that is administered via interpretation, have you ensured that a statement is placed in the testing results report attesting such?
What is the quality of your interactions with Deaf Have you received training on standardized testing, team members; how are your interactions perceived understand their impact on marginalized communities for which the test is not normed, and know how to by Deaf children and hearing children alike? effectively interpret them so that the child is receiving services that are equitable and just and categorical labels that reflect the childâ€™s true ability? 8. Interpreters involved in the program should be highly certified and knowledgeable concerning the Deaf culture. How have you, the school district, your state, and the overall profession determined what it means to be highly certified, and are you? In what ways are you ensuring that not only is your certification the highest possible, but also your qualiAs someone with hearing privilege and power, do you fications? have any responsibility in advocating for Deaf team Does the demonstration of knowledge about Deaf members, and how does that effectively play out? Do you advocate for and utilize the talents and skills culture show up in your practice, and how? of a Deaf interpreter? Do you advocate for the inclusion of a Deaf interpret6. Curriculum that includes Deaf history and Deaf er to ensure the interpretation is culturally relevant? culture should be available in classrooms that have 9. The hearing administrators, teachers, and students deaf children. in the school should be offered continuing opportuniAs an interpreter, are you well-versed in Deaf history ties to learn and use American Sign Language. and Deaf culture? What opportunities do you advocate for in order to What is your role in vetting Deaf-centric materials in continue improving in the languages you interpret? the classroom? How do you serve as a resource in the creation of In what ways does your cultural mediation and con- language development opportunities? cept expansion utilize meaningful examples from Deaf history and culture to provide clearly interpret- Considering audism and hearing privilege, what authority have you been given regarding learning oped, hearing-centric material? portunities that should instead be delegated to someone Deaf? Youtube Link:https://youtu.be/zST0nvcbo3k
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A CRITICAL LENS I would never suggest that these questions are easily answered. They require adept analysis and understanding of multiple systems, laws, and ethics, the language/identity/social development of children, the practices of education, family systems, Deaf peoples and their cultures and languages, etc. While it is easy to identify how audism leads hearing parents of Deaf children to choose mainstreaming for their child’s education, they are not alone in that choice. Deaf parents also choose mainstreaming at times, usually after much deliberation and soul-searching. Clearly, in these situations, the manifestation of some responsibilities may look different. In addition to these confounding factors, we must also give special consideration to families who possess marginalized identities. The system of white supremacy in our society permeates all aspects of life, including our residential schools. Parents of children of color have an especially difficult decision-making process when it comes to choosing if their child should survive the toxic systems that promote a white Deaf identity far away (residentially), or a white Deaf identity closer to home where some of the colonization might be mitigated through sleeping and eating in a home where their racial and ethnic heritage is normalized and embraced. However, parents are not the only ones with critical decisions to make. Interpreters have the obligation to determine their participation in the system of mainstreaming Deaf kids into hearing schools and classrooms. Interpreters must decide if they have the appropriate skills, knowledge, and attitude for this type of work. Beyond this, and beyond the series of questions posed in this article, interpreters must ultimately ask themselves this:
Am I prepared to straddle a system that seeks to “normalize” Deaf children and work as an accomplice to resisting the colonization process? If yes, how does that show up in my daily practice? References Agent. Oxford Dictionaries. Retrieved from en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/agent King, Jess Freeman (2011). Mainstreaming Revisited: Is It Working, Has It Ever Worked. The Endeavor, Spring/Summer, pp. 25–28. Professional Standards Committee (2007). Interpreting in Legal Settings. Retrieved from Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc. Website: http://www.rid.org/about-rid/about-interpreting/standard-practice-papers/ Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (2005). NAD-RID Code of Professional Conduct. Retrieved from http://www.rid.org/ ethics/code-of-professional-conduct/ About the Author: Jonathan Webb, PhD; CI & CT, NIC-Adv Facilitator, Writer, Activist, Educator, Mentor
Jonathan started learning ASL in 1986 and somehow got tricked into his first interpreting assignments in 1993. He has specialized in Visual/ Gestural Communication, Mental Health interpreting, and the fine art of questioning everything. He has degrees in Interpreting, Liberal Arts, Deaf Education, and Theology, with post-doc work in Clinical Psychology. Hobbies include ocean and beach time, poetry, visualizing an emancipated world, and arguing for the sake of arguing. He’s partnered with his best friend who happens to be an amazing interpreter. They share three children he is convinced will change the world- for the better!
Dear Encounters With Reality Signed by Brenda E. Cartwright CI and CT, CSC Dear Encounters with
A recent phenomenon I have noticed is a growing tendency for ITP students to date Deaf people while they are in the program. What is behind this?
YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/4dYDpCAl6Rs
An ITP Student Perspective: I would say that when ITP students first get acquainted with the Deaf community, it feels like Deaf people are the coolest thing since sliced bread. In an ITP, you’re learning all these things about Deaf culture and the language. Then you meet some really awesome people from the community and it’s hard not to be star-struck. If you find out a Deaf person is interested in you, it is easy to get swept up in it all. I have even heard some students who are NERDAs (Not Even Related to a Deaf Adult) say that they are jealous of CODAs. I think what they mean is they wish they had that strong connection to the Deaf community. I can see why the Deaf community might question our motives, but as a group of young people, we are all just eager to network and navigate these new and exciting relationships.
An Experienced Deaf Consumer’s Perspective: When two people from different cultures begin dating it is easy to overlook some of the power-sharing or cultural exchanges that occur. It is important to recognize that between two cultural groups, things are equally exchanged: ASL is exchanged for English, hearing culture is exchanged for Deaf culture, and so on. If the parties are trying to exchange different things, the dynamic may shift from healthy to oppressive. ASL is a wonderful, vibrant language and the Deaf community embodies an extremely diverse and rich culture. Those in cross-cultural relationships should take care that the languages and people involved are valued and treated with respect.
An Experienced Interpreter’s Perspective: This may be a natural consequence of getting involved in the community, but students need to make sure their choices will benefit them and their career in the long run. Involving themselves in the community in any way that is unethical will ultimately destroy the relationship. Taking advantage or trying to get ahead with those who an interpreter relies on for their livelihood will seriously jeopardize their ability to continue in the profession. 18
About the Author: Brenda Cartwright
Brenda Cartwright is an experienced interpreter, teacher and presenter. She is the Director of the Sign Language Interpreter Program at Lansing Community College. She holds a Comprehensive Skills Certificate (CSC), Certificate of Transliteration (CT), and Certificate of Interpretation (CI) from the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf. VIEWS Volume 34 • Issue 4
Past President Dawn Whitcher
The contributions of volunteer leaders to the work of RID serve as the backbone for our association and directly contributes to our progress and success. In this issue of VIEWS, we extend to Past President Dawn Whitcher well-deserved recognition of her volunteer service and express our sincere gratitude. Dawn Whitcher, NIC, CI and CT, joined the RID Board of Directors as the Region V Rep during the 2010-2012 term. She served as Secretary for a portion of the 2011-2013 term, and was elected as President for the 2013-2015 term. She was elected to a second term as President for the 2015-2017 term. Although she resigned from the Presidency in the fall of 2016, she returned to serve at the request of the Board in the role of Past President. Her seven years of consecutive volunteer service required a tremendous sacrifice of time with her young family, but provided significant and valuable leadership to RID during a critical period of investigation, assessment, and change. During her tenure as President, she led the association through several important transitions. She facilitated more active engagement with the volunteer leadership of RID by initiating quarterly webinars open to Affiliate Chapter, Member Section, and council leaders. She also instituted Power and Privilege Training for the Board of Directors to increase awareness of institutional barriers that impact inclusion and equity within RID. Finally, she www.rid.org
YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/G3CiQKxihNE facilitated a more thorough understanding of the organization and its recurring issues through a series of assessments—two organizational assessments in 20142015 conducted by the organizational consulting firm, TSNE, and three program assessments focused on the 2015 NOLA Convention, testing and certification, and conferencing. These assessments enabled the Board leadership to investigate possible solutions. One such solution was to establish CASLI, LLC—a separate entity for developing, administering, and maintaining the written and performance tests used by RID as part of the criteria for certification. Another solution, related to conference losses, was to offer a Leadership Track during the 2017 LEAD Together conference in order to engage the membership in discussion about the core issues facing RID and how they might be addressed. These are just a few highlights, among many other operational changes, of President Whitcher’s service. Thank you for your many contributions, Past President Whitcher—you truly made a difference!!
RID Board of Directors 19
Street Leverage Interviews RID Vice President
Sandra Maloney BA: Hello, I’m Brandon Arthur, with Street Leverage. I’m here as part of our BTP project - Beyond the Practice, related to the field of interpreting. Today we want to discuss organizational leadership, and those who have the motivation to be involved in leadership for the field of interpreting. We’ll talk about how to enter leadership positions in an organization and how to influence change in those settings. I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to sit with Sandra Maloney, the new Vice President of RID. Welcome, Sandra. SM: Thank you, I’m excited to be here. BA: So, we’ve been here at this Leadership Conference for almost a week. This conference is the first I know of to have that focus on leadership, and I’ve been attending RID conferences since 1997. This is the first that I remember having this theme, so it’s a
YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/Ep2ahgWQF04
really exciting opportunity. But you specifically have been involved in leadership locally, and then up the chain, and now nationally. I wonder, what’s your story related to stepping up that ladder of leadership positions? SM: Well, it’s interesting to think about my journey, being involved with so many different levels of the organization. Really, it started a long time ago, when I applied to be involved with the national committee. My application was not picked, and I was pretty disappointed. But I started seeking for other opportunities to be involved, and I decided to become involved with my Affiliate Chapter in their professional development group. It happened rather quickly that
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FEATURE there was an available position on their board, and so I became the Secretary, and the next year, the position of President was available, so I went ahead and took the opportunity to become President of my local Affiliate Chapter in Michigan. So that was my local experience. Later, a colleague contacted me to let me know that the Region III Representative position would soon be available if I was interested in applying. I felt that I was kind of pulled along to these different opportunities. It was my peers who lifted me up, told me they thought I was a good fit for the position, and encouraged me to apply for the new role. I figured, why not? And submitted my application. I was delighted when I won, they accepted me as Region III Rep, and I went on from there. BA: Wonderful. So as you navigated the different levels of leadership and became increasingly involved, I’m sure you saw a lot of positive things, and also a lot of challenges. What are some commonalities that you noticed between the local and national levels of the organization? SM: I think there are two main things: First, trying to engage the members. Trying to really pull them in – I know that everyone has busy lives and is trying to juggle their work and home life, but trying to help them figure out how to be involved is important. The second thing is – and my first point really ties into this
YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/XaqDjSjxiVk – that both locally and nationally in our organization, we need to do some introspective analysis to find our “Why”. Why are we here? Why do we spend www.rid.org
“Once you identify your own drive, you can start to envision how you can best work with others...” the effort to build up and operate both local and national levels of this organization? I’m a really big fan of Simon Sinek; he is a motivational speaker whose books and presentations revolve around finding your “Why”. For me, that is the encouragement we all need to really dig down and discover not what we do, but why – this will tell us what our core values really are. BA: For those who haven’t found their “Why” – how do they start that process for themselves? I mean, they could start by reading his book, but what else? SM: Definitely, they could start by reading Simon’s book or watching his Ted Talk, but then really reflecting on themselves. It’s so important to be aware of our own values – our own “Why”. Whatever is my individual motivation, that’s what I contribute to the organization on the local, national, or committee level – no matter your specific leadership capacity. Once you identify your own drive, you can start to envision how you can best work with others and identify the true meaning of your work and the inherent value in what we do. BA: So during this leadership conference, President Melvin Walker said that this is our 1964. Many of us know that in 1964, RID was finally and officially established, and it was that one solitary moment in time in which the leaders of the organization decided to push RID forward and do something really great. So I’m wondering, what do you feel about this event, about this time, that makes President Walker’s comment real for you and for everyone here? SM: Oh there’s so many things that have happened 21
so far, and we’re not even done! For me, the diversity in the room has been awe-inspiring. The diverse perspectives and the raw feelings that have been brought to this discussion have added a level of vulnerability and authenticity to our dialogue. And I’ve noticed a lot of the discussions come back to finding our “Why” by looking to our past, analyzing our present, and anticipating our future. Another event that impacted me in a big way was the message of our Business Meeting. For the first time, RID had a person of color conduct the Business Meeting. That was touching! It was an historical moment that will literally be written down in our history forever.
also what do you foresee as the biggest challenge that will confront the interpreting field or RID over the next five years?
BA: I agree with you about the historical significance of that meeting. So I’m thinking about two things that you mentioned. First, pulling in the members – that is always a challenge. For those interpreters who are apathetic towards RID, what would you say to them about this moment – about our 1964? How would you encourage them to consider, or reconsider, being involved and being active? What would you offer them?
invent our image. And I believe that the Board, at least in my tenure over the last three years, has already begun that kind of work internally. Now it’s time to bring that work to the members and apply it to the organization as a whole.
SM: Well, for the people here at conference, they’ve been working hard to develop strategic recommendations for our future – what a neat thing. But it’s just the start of the process. When we gather all of the recommendations that are being collected this week, our work won’t be finished by simply condensing them. That collection of recommendations will be given back to the members. There are a lot of members who couldn’t come, for various reasons, and they will have the opportunity to still be involved with these discussions and to influence the future of RID. BA: So as you are looking to the future of RID, what do you hope will be the greatest achievement of the next several years, maybe of the next five years? And 22
SM: I think right now we’re in a time period I call the Organization Innovation. It means that we’re casting off our old assumptions about what works, we’re cutting ties with past practices, and we’re searching for new ideas about how to support our members, and how to support the Deaf community. But at the same time I think that will lead to our biggest challenge, which is the past. Mistakes have definitely happened in the past, but we need to find out how to move forward and how to re-
BA: Thank you for interviewing with us. SM: Thank you. BA: Hopefully you all can ponder about how and why you can be involved in leadership for the interpreting field. It’s important you consider your personal “Why”. And it’s important that you find your own 1964. Why having that established will help you as an interpreter to do better and progress on your journey. Sandra mentioned to make sure you show up early – don’t procrastinate your involvement and then look back and realize that you had many more years you could have given. There’s an important lesson there. Thank you for watching!
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Meet your Deaf Member at Large (DMAL) Branton Stewart Hello! I am Branton Stewart from California. I have been involved with RID since 1999, when I attended the national conference in Boston, plus fifteen years as a Certified Deaf Interpreter. In addition, I’ve been in a number of different groups within RID - Deaf Caucus, Deaf Advisory Council (DAC) as chairperson for three terms, and the Board of Directors, first as interim and now as your elected Deaf Member at Large. So why am I here? What do I plan to do as your Deaf Member at Large? I really want to focus on a number of things while in this position: First, I specifically want to focus on YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/cfUZBlvcpsY the testing and requirements for CDIs. I want to help establish a strong foundation for CDI standards and work with CASLI to move that forward. Next, I would like to focus on EPS, which is extremely important! The Deaf community should have the right to file complaints in a manner that is convenient and simple. The process should be faster and should have a more fluid structure. That process is very important to me to focus on and build. Finally: People of Color (POC). I recognize that there are not enough interpreters or CDIs that are POC. I want to be involved in your organizations and events to discuss how you can be more engaged and help us to improve. We all need your help and involvement to be successful. In all of this, communication is important, of course, for engagement and transparency. Headquarters, the Board, interpreters, Deaf interpreters, and the Deaf community all of us need to connect and come together to make RID better and to feel more trust in our organization.
Honoring Diversity: People of Color in VIEWS In correspondence with Leandra Williams for her contribution to VIEWS, she asked if we could help with a separate research project to find a particular picture with an interpreter of color that had previously been published in VIEWS. During the search, I took careful note of the contributions made by People of Color throughout our publication’s history. What resulted was an inspiring bank of photos and stories that honor the diversity within RID. To share them with you, we’ve started this column in VIEWS! Here are a couple of photos from the past two decades (above: October 1997, left: December 2007). Please let us know if you recognize those who are not identified in the above photo! We hope to hear back from you with thoughts about this column, memories related to the individuals or events in these photos, and any photos you can find of RID events or members, so that we will have more to share. We appreciate you! Julia Wardle Editor-in-Chief www.rid.org
“So, What Do You Want to Do With This Degree?” By: Leandra Williams, Ph.D. NAD V, CI and CT When I decided to return to YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/OO6b60yKUgE school to get a master’s degree in ASL Interpretation (MAI), it was during a time when an undergraduate seemed to evoke resentfulness and at other times it degree was not required for professional credential- meant nothing at all. This led me to avoid publicizing ing in sign language interpretation. However, I start- my degree status to co-interpreters. However, some ed to notice that more Deaf consumers were enrolled interpreter service companies were eager to recogin graduate-level course work and were securing jobs nize my achievement and add a small increase in in professions that required sign language interpreters pay. I was invited to work as an adjunct professor at to be able to process information with both academic a local IEP. Most importantly, I started to understand and linguistic equivalence. My racial and cultural how important my degree was to the Black Deaf and peers were behind the idea of me getting a graduate Sign Language Interpreting communities. Prior to degree (more so than I) however, many of my col- my graduation, there was only one other Black Inleagues questioned my motives and reminded me that terpreter who had received this degree – Dr. Jackie there was no professional advantage in getting a grad- Bruce. In many ways, my decision was paying off. uate degree. I would not be financially compensated for getting this degree and would still be hired to work the same jobs that they were hired to do – with their undergraduate degrees. The only exception to this standard was in Interpreter Education Programs (IEPs). Graduate degrees are a prerequisite for teaching in fouryear degree IEPs (Monikowski, 2013.) By some miracle I was accepted into Gallaudet’s program, which proved to be one of the most challenging learning experiences I ever had. I left the program feeling that the time lapsed too fast for me to learn all that I needed to work proficiently in the field. I noticed that with the addition of “M.A.” to my name, some of my peers felt I should be able to Audience members at the Dissertation Defense for Leandra Williams, work in any setting and do so flawlessly. Ph.D. – November 18, 2016 At times, my “Gallaudet” education 24
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FEATURE ing; and so is the number of Black RID members with degrees. I am proud to be included in these statistics. My simple answer to the question that has been posed to me at each point in my educational advancement “So, what do you want to do with this degree?” is, I want to be the best representative of my profession to consumers, students, and peers by virtue of my academic achievement. YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/pGRMTaectIM
In 2010, the Department of Interpretation and Translation at Gallaudet University announced the beginning of its doctoral program. As an alumna of the MAI program, I wanted to support their efforts by defying the myth that sign language interpreters are not interested in seeking doctoral degrees. Over time, the size of the cohort changed as students reevaluated their desire to obtain this degree. Once again, I was asked “So, what do you want to do with this degree?” Since I was already teaching in an IEP, I responded that I would now have options for fulltime, tenured employment in this setting. In addition, as our profession becomes more research-based the degree would allow me to contribute to that aspect of the field. There is not a great deal of research focusing on the Black Deaf and Sign Language Interpreting communities. These perspectives need to be a part of our professional narrative and I would now have a chance to add to the body of literature on this topic and others. As I got closer to completion of the degree requirements, I also realized once again that achieving this goal was not about me, but about representing the Black Sign Language Interpreting community. According to Ryan Butts, RID Director of Standards & Practices (and former Director of Member Services), the association started collecting data from its members related to their college degree status in 2015. During that time, RID reported 15,457 members. Of these members 4,000 reported having college degrees; 125 of those degrees are held by Blacks. During the 2016 fiscal year, RID consisted of 15,411 members and 4,823 of those members reported having college degrees; 148 of those degrees are held by Blacks. While these statistics do not break down the degree categories (undergraduate versus graduate) the number of RID members with degrees is steadily increaswww.rid.org
A terminal degree does that and more.
References: Monikowski, C. (2013). The academic’s dilemma: A balanced and integrated career. In E. Winston & C. Monikowski (Eds.), Evolving paradigms in interpreter education. (Interpreter education series; v.7, pp. 1-27). Washington, DC: Gallaudet University Press. Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc. (2016). Retrieved July 25, 2016 from http://www.rid.org/2015-annualreport/#MEMJ Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc. (2017). Retrieved September 25, 2017 from http://www.rid.org/2016-annualreport/#home
About the Author: Leandra Williams Leandra Williams is a native Chicagoan who is nationally certified by RID and NAD. She has served in a variety of positions with RID, Illinois RID, NAOBI, Inc., NAOBI-DC, and NAOBI-MCC. She holds memberships in various consumer based organizations including: NBDA, (where she served as Assistant Conference Interpreter Coordinator and Mentorship Program Coordinator); CLBDA, DCABDA, and NAD. Ms. Williams works professionally as a Sign Language Interpreter in private practice. She recently became the first Black female to receive a PhD in Sign Language Interpreting with her dissertation, Exploring the Hegemonic Whiteness in Sign Language Interpreter Education Program Curricula: A Discussion with Students, Faculty, and Administrators.
Law Enforcement Interpreting for Deaf Persons A Study Guide by Tara Potterveld
Hi, I’m Tara Potterveld, author of the book, “Law Enforcement Interpreting for Deaf Persons” published by RID. RID will publish a new book this year. Steve Phan and I collaborated to create a study guide as a companion to “Law Enforcement Interpreting for Deaf Persons.” The new Study Guide will be used in conjunction with the original book. The Study Guide is composed of various youtube link: https://youtu.be/ja-Puw_IJgQ questions related to the information in the Law Enforcement book. The format for study includes multiple choice, true/ false, short answers and an opportunity to practice the Miranda Warning with a mentor. Law enforcement interpreting is a serious endeavor that can potentially impact the lives of Deaf persons. It is vital that interpreters prepare before accepting assignments with the police. With this new publication, interpreters will be able to obtain Continuing Educational Units (CEUs). Interpreters can earn 2 - 8 CEUs using this study guide. Interpreters can use this guide by themselves, with a group of Deaf and hearing interpreters as well as with a mentor. Mentors will also be able to earn CEUs. Steve and I hope that you will enjoy and learn from this new book in order to interpret more effectively with law enforcement. Thank you.
Get this title and other RID Press Publications at RID's online store. Visit the link HERE!
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FEATURE (continued from page 12) That work is done for them by the educator who presents the information directly to them in an accessible mode and manner; the information is intrinsically connected. This is not equitable. Our job as educational interpreters is to mediate culture and provide equal and meaningful access. In order to achieve this, we have the responsibility to ‘unpack’ deictic terms so that all students have an equal opportunity to learn through seamless cognition. The goal is to ensure that Deaf students receive an equitable educational experience. Accommodating a hearing environment in such a way that this is possible will necessitate someone in the room to put forth extra effort. That burden should not fall upon the students’ shoulders. It is up to us, educational interpreters - partnered with the classroom teacher - to bear that load. Teachers at all educational levels utilize deictic terms during their instruction. Examples from an elementary school setting may include an art teacher explaining how to model clay into a pinch-pit while demonstrating that technique. Another example might be a gym teacher narrating proper versus improper form while performing an athletic task. In middle school, we might find a teacher pointing to various locations on the globe while describing natural disasters that have occurred and why. Or there might be a math class, during which the instructor works through the steps of solving an equation, saying things like “this (referring to the product) plugs in here (referring to the numerator for a fraction in a formula).” The use of deictic terms in instruction is not limited to primary or secondary education. A college professor could perhaps be found displaying a line graph. While the professor narrates some trends observed between the data at certain points in time, the students are expected to make observations of their own based on what they have learned about deciphering scientific data. How can we go about making deictic terms more explicit and readily understood? The following is a series of strategies an educational interpreter might employ as they strive for successful interpretations of deictic terms. 28
Youtube Link: https://youtu.be/wmIBRGjkwDU While this list is not exhaustive, many of the approaches can be adapted to a variety of educational settings. Inservice teachers: Meeting with an instructor before class creates an opportunity for you, the educational interpreter, to illustrate the fact that ASL is a visual language. Most educators will understand the implication that the student using interpreting services will have their attention divided between the message and the visual aide. An invitation could be made for the teacher to collaborate with you in creating access, perhaps by providing demonstrations and instruction in a consecutive fashion (one and then the other). Ask for clarification: If, while interpreting, you miss the referent to which the deictic term points, you might consider interrupting the speaker to seek clarification. This is a practice best determined in a professional manner, with a familiarity of the nuances and complexities of the setting and the Deaf consumers’ preferences. Pause while interpreting: Signing everything that is said without falling behind is an altruistic goal, but this approach can sometimes lead to a less clear interpretation. We should remind ourselves that just because someone is talking, doesn’t mean our hands
If you have the luxury of a team, use them! VIEWS Volume 34 • Issue 4
FEATURE need to be moving. Remembering our true goal of dynamic, meaningful access will give us permission to pause, look, process, and produce a message that is coherent. It is not always a word-for-sign process. Not only do we have permission to pause and produce a clear (but not verbatim) message, we are responsible for doing so. Incorporate the visual aide into the interpretation: It may be appropriate to reach over and point to specific aspects of the visual aid you wish to highlight or comment on. Other times, having a model or copy of the visual aide to which you can refer may be an ideal strategy. In all of these contexts, interpreter placement is a key variable. Consider positioning yourself near the object of focus and decide whether to sit or stand (if able) based on the students’ line of sight. Use your team: If you have the luxury of a team, use them! The supporting interpreter can be responsible for watching the instructor’s use of visual aids and can inform you what deictic terms refer to. As an example, in a neuroscience class, the interpreter who is currently signing may need to see where the professor is referring when pointing out a particular neurological function in the brain, and the supporting interpreter may produce the feed. Working together helps to ensure equal access.
Transcript for the video can be accessed at the following link: http://bit.ly/2y0vn2U Interpreting is no easy task; it is complex, nuanced, demanding work which is compounded when the source message includes ambiguous language and supplementary visual aides. In order to provide quality services and equal access, we need to intentionally practice honing our skills. The following YouTube video provides an opportunity to do just that: https:// www.youtube.com/watch?v=dR_BFmDMRaI.
This video is of an actual classroom lecture on the owl butterfly. Throughout the presentation, the instructor makes ample use of deictic terms, while alluding to various components on a visual display. The video is captioned and has an accompanying transcript in an effort to be accessible for CDIs as well. You can fully utilize this practice opportunity by first engaging in prediction and generation. Look at an image of the owl butterfly, and make predictions about what type of language might be used in this lecture. Mentally rehearse ASL production of these concepts. Next, interpret the video, and engage in self-reflection throughout. Film yourself, if desired, so that later you can watch and analyze your work. Look for successful interpretations and opportunities for enhanced clarity. Consider asking a mentor, colleague, or friend to offer their feedback, or invite them to participate in a reciprocal exchange wherein you each observe each other’s filmed interpretation, and constructively reflect on each other’s work through peer-mentoring. Educational interpreting is a position of great privilege and responsibility. The work is not easy, and successful interpretations do not often happen by chance; it takes intentional practice, deliberate application of reliable techniques, and thoughtful reflection, coupled with a willingness to grow and change in order to provide best quality work. Certainly, the students we serve deserve nothing less. About the Author: Jenee Petri Swanson Jenee Petri-Swanson, NIC, TSC is a staff ASL interpreter and Cued Language Transliterator at the University of Minnesota. Jenee is passionate about equity in all contexts, and feels responsible to engage conversations and take action toward achieving access and inclusion. She envisions the use of CDIs pre K-5 classrooms as an ideal next step toward advancing those initiatives. Jenee is honored to be a co-chair for the Educational Interpreters’ Committee of the Minnesota Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, for which she maintains a blog authored by various community members who engage topics related to educational interpreting.
VIEWS PRINT SURVEY
Thank you for taking the time to fill out our survey! We’ve gotten great feedback from over 485 members! With a goal of 1,000 responses - we’ve extended the deadline!
Tuesday November 21st
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Regional Conference 2018 Update! TBD
July 18-20 Gulfport, MS
August 2-5 Milwaukee, WI
July (TBD) Albuquerque, NM
July 11-14 Vancouver, WA
For more information, visit: http://www.rid.org/events/regional-conferences/
Finding Your Way From Graduation to Certification Produced by the CATIE Center at St. Catherine’s University ASL translation by Rania Johnson
It’s a journey... that I propose I am not the guide ... nor technical assistant ... I will be your fellow passenger . . . ~ Nikki Giovanni For many novice interpreters, the path from entry to practice is not a clear one. Graduation from an interpreting program may bring as many questions as it does answers. How do graduates develop the knowledge and skills they need to earn national certification and continue to develop as competent interpreters? What evidence-based practices could be incorporated into IEPs to clarify this pathway? How can mentoring, coaching, community involvement, and supervised interpreting experience pave this pathway? The CATIE Center at St. Catherine University is developing a Graduation to Certification (GTC) program to Youtube Link: https://youtu.be/19caJhKTFDU address these questions and support novice interpreters who are starting their professional journey. ing and learning with Deaf people in the community, include a community of practice, and include mentorGTC’s Mission ing/coaching. The program also seeks to increase the number of interpreters from underrepresented groups, The CATIE Center has been awarded a five-year which RSA defines as communities of color, people grant from the U.S. Department of Education, Rehaworking with at least three languages, rural residents, bilitation Services Administration (RSA) to design, and men. Additionally, the program must have compilot, and evaluate a graduation to certification model ponents that are replicable and sustainable by other program using evidence-based practices. A major programs and agencies. goal is to demonstrate approaches that reduce the average time it takes graduates from bachelor’s proDuring the 2018 pilot year, the CATIE Center will grams to earn RID certification. RSA requires that the accept fourteen participants into the GTC program, program be experiential and accessible to individuals and 30 in subsequent years. This is a relatively small across the nation and to those with family/work renumber of participants, but the resources developed sponsibilities, include at least 150 hours of interactby the GTC project, including a variety of online ma32
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FEATURE terials, will be available to any interested students, Then you're taught the answer and you remember that novices, mentors, and educators. longer by doing generation. Program Development
Woven into the components of the GTC program, including the mentoring and immersion experiences, Our work began in January 2017 with one year to de- will be principles such as generation; these principlevelop the required components of the program. Al- based activities can make the learning more durable though reducing the time from graduation to certifica- and effective. tion is an immediate need, to transform the field we need to examine both the education in IEPs as well as The program incorporates community resources by the resources and support for interpreters after they requiring a minimum of 150 hours of connection to graduate. We seek to bring together the best of both the Deaf community. One of the main outcomes RSA the academic world and community resources. noted in its call for proposals was the need for novices to increase their involvement with the Deaf commuA foundation of this program is evidence-based prin- nity. Because participants may live anywhere in the ciples. A significant resource is the book Make it country, the GTC program is designed to allow parStick: The Science of Successful Learning by Peter ticipants, with the advice and support of a language Brown, Henry Roediger, and Mark McDaniel. This and cultural coach, to build these connections where book contains an accessible explanation eleven years they currently live. Additionally, we are reaching out to interpreting service agencies to gain insight in several areas. What characteristics are they seeking in new interpreters? What are effective on-boarding practices? How can they partner in hosting field induction experiences? At the Accelerate conference in August 2017, a number of agency representatives shared ideas both for the GTC program and for future participants. Hereâ€™s an example from Ryan Shepherd: Youtube Link: https://youtu.be/GJ2_sNqIPSQ of research into memory and cognition. Peter Brown, the principal author, is an advisor for the GTC program. This past June, 25 advisors gathered for an online Think Tank to discuss the book and how to apply its principles to interpreter education and the GTC program. One of the ideas presented in the book is generation, which Peter Brown explains in an interview with the CATIE Center (2017):
There are two key factors that I have noticed related to interpreters who are recent graduates from ITPs that really have an impact on their success. The first being that they grew up signing. They didnâ€™t just have one to three years of learning sign language before entering an ITP, they grew up immersed in the deaf community. The second factor is they love Deaf people and Deaf culture. When asked why they are interpreters it is because they love the community and culture, not because they love ASL. Interpreters who love the community and culture have more of an impact and are more successful than those who are just enamored with the language. Those are two of the biggest things I have noticed with novice interpreters.
Generation is one of the desirable difficulties that the research shows is useful. That is, you're posed a problem, you try to generate an answer and even if you generate the wrong answer, the act of surveying your One of our goals is for elements of the GTC program knowledge and in proposing an answer has a sort of to be adopted by interpreting agencies. By more efpriming effect. fectively training mentors and supervisors, the onwww.rid.org
FEATURE boarding of novice interpreters could become more consistent and successful. This would benefit novices, agencies, and the Deaf community. Wayfinding Even with the GTC program, the pathway for new interpreters will not become uniform or an easy one to navigate. The communities where interpreters are needed are simply too diverse. The CATIE Center seeks to combine the support of educational institutions, community resources, and interpreting agencies, but success will also come out of effort and sacrifice on the part of novice interpreters. In many ways, the GTC program hopes to promote wayfinding skill development, rather than just the ability to navigate known territory. Shankar Vedantam (Penman, 2017), host of NPR’s Hidden Brain podcast, puts it this way: “Wayfinding isn't just about finding out where you need to go. It's about getting comfortable with the idea that you may not have just one destination.” Recent graduates may be daunted by this prospect, but do not have to face it alone. As the Graduate to Certification program builds on efforts to diversify the profession and strengthen the entry pathways into practice, we can provide companions for novice interpreters on this journey. Participants, mentors, and supervised placement hosts are invited to travel with the CATIE Center in exploring the path from Graduation to Certification. Extending our invi-
It’s a journey ... that I propose ... I am not the guide ... nor technical assistant ... I will be your fellow passenger ... I promise you nothing ... I accept your promise ... of the same we are simply riding ... a wave ... that may carry ... or crash ... It’s a journey ... and I want ... to go ... 34
tation, we share the poetry of Nikki Giovanni (2003): For more information about the Graduation to Certification program, please visit our website: grad2cert.org. References
Brown, P. C., Roediger, H. L., & McDaniel, M. A. (2016). Make it stick: the science of successful learning. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Giovanni, N. (2003). A journey. Retrieved on September 6, 2017 from https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/journey. Translation by H. Williams. [Video]. Retrieved from http:// grad2cert.org/information-for-mentors/ Penman, M. (Producer). (2017, January 3). How Silicon Valley can help you get unstuck. Hidden Brain. [Audio podcast]. Retrieved from http://www.npr.org/templates/transcript/transcript. php?storyId=507901716 Ryan Shepard on Characteristics of Successful Interpreters. [Video]. Retrieved from http://grad2cert.org/for-agencies-andsupervisors/ Thoughts on Generation: An Excerpt from a Conversation with Peter C. Brown and Patricia Gordon (Translation by J. Cole). [Video]. Retrieved from http://grad2cert.org/make-it-stickprinciples/
About the Author: The CATIE Center at St. Catherine University is committed to promoting excellence in interpreting education. Our work involves Deaf and hearing faculty, staff, students, stakeholders and innovative partners both locally and nationally. We have been awarded grant funds from the U.S. Department of Education, Rehabilitation Services Administration to advance interpreter education since 1999. In 2016, two grants were awarded for 2017–2021: Graduation to Certification: Under award H160C160001, the CATIE Center will investigate, pilot, evaluate, and disseminate evidence-based practices to decrease the time between graduation and certification. Mental and Behavioral Health Interpreting: Under award H160D160003, the CATIE Center will focus on increasing the number and diversity of certified interpreters available to work in mental and behavioral health settings. VIEWS Volume 34 • Issue 4
World Association of Sign Language Interpreters North America Update September 2017
Liz Mendoza, CI & CT, NIC: Advanced, SC:L, Ed.D. North America Rergional Representative
YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/6pv4gfCH9aM The WASLI Board held a face-to-face meeting in Panama City, Panama, July 15-16, 2017 during the Latin America Conference. In attendance were the Executive Board and several regional representatives. During the Latin America Conference, Mexico requested that U.S. representation be included in a legal interpreting conference in Mexico City on August 24-27, 2017. We were able to secure Dr. Len Roberson, CI, CT, SC:L to attend the conference and update the Mexican government on policy and protocol in the U.S. He was able to explain how barriers to accessing legal documents and court processes is a human rights issue. He also talked about the importance of specialized training and continuing education for legal interpreters. We’re grateful to Dr. Roberson for his time in Mexico City. WASLI has also joined several organizations and individuals in signing Street Leverage’s pledge to embrace diversity and respect for all human rights. WASLI has a strong commitment to welcome and support linguistic and cultural diversity. WASLI is a small and diverse organization and we appreciate your help. The North American region includes some of the largest numbers of interpreters. Here in the US, there are over 15,000 RID members, while in other countries, there might be one interpreter in the entire country. If you are interested in supporting our efforts to support the improvement of the profession of interpreting services worldwide, please join us! For a $25 individual membership fee, you can help our efforts. That might be your coffee allowance for the week! Please go to http://wasli.org/membership/individual-member to join. Remember that WASLI and WFD are having our international conference in Paris in 2019! We hope to see you there!
VIEWS Volume 34 • Issue 4
Thinking Outside of the Box: Deaf Interpreter Training Keri Brooks, M.Ed, CDI, ASLTA: Master CEO of TRUE-BIZ ASL, LLC
In the last couple of months, Certified Deaf Interpreters (CDIs) have been in the spotlight more than ever before - history is currently in the making. It may seem like Deaf interpreting is a new concept but, in YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/ij88_Mft25I fact, Deaf people have been interpreting for one another for as long as they have existed.1 A Deaf In- The online commentary from some Deaf community terpreter is a visual communication specialist who members illustrated that the concept of Deaf Interprovides extra-linguistic support to Deaf consum- preters was foreign to them. The same occurred when ers. This extra-linguistic support can be in the form Jimmy Kimmel LIVE! hosted a CDI to interpret a of ASL without English interference, modified ASL, monologue from Jimmy Kimmel. Some members gestures, drawings, tactile communication, et cetera. of the Deaf community had not realized that DeafAs a Deaf person, this interpreter has a distinct set of Hearing team interpreting exists or that a CDI could skills that include a wide range of visual language and feasibly interpret a comedy show through the use of communication forms “influenced by region, culture, a teleprompter. Even so, the response from the Deaf age, literacy, education, class, and physical, cogni- community has been overwhelmingly positive and tive, and mental health” (NCIEC, 2007). Deaf inter- the emergency broadcasts that used CDIs could have preters provide a level of communication access to saved many lives. These recent events clearly indithe consumer beyond what a hearing ASL-English in- cate that we need to be proactive in educating the terpreter may be able to provide when working alone. Deaf community and the general population on the CDIs often interpret for Deaf consumers who use roles and responsibilities of CDIs. home signs or foreign sign language, have additional disabilities, are Deafblind, are unable to use ASL ful- The first official certificate for Deaf Interpreters dates ly due to medical issues, or are under the age of 18. as far back as 1972 with the Reverse Skills CertifiIn sum, the use of CDIs benefits Deaf consumers by cate, or RSC (RID, 2015). After more than 40 years, providing access to ASL from proficient, native users. Deaf Interpreters are only just becoming more visible. The availability of training is still as sparse as Before we discuss providing training to Deaf In- ever. Interpreter training programs were established terpreters, it is important to educate the Deaf com- to meet the community’s need for more hearing ASLmunity on the role of Deaf Interpreters where there English interpreters. Now that Deaf interpreters are in is still a lack of understanding. This lack of under- higher demand than ever before, these programs are standing was highlighted during the news coverage 1 Alcorn & Humphrey (2007) mentioned that “sign language on Hurricane Irma when Certified Deaf Interpreters interpreters have probably been around since the first deaf/signwere assigned to interpret emergency broadcasts. ing cave person.” www.rid.org
FEATURE not ready for Deaf students. This situation calls for us to think outside of the box to meet the needs that established institutions cannot currently satisfy. The Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf has a 40hour training requirement in order to take the CDI Knowledge Exam, but the availability and accessibility of workshops is sparse. Furthermore, both new
YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/K4BMWdGuzy0 and seasoned Deaf Interpreters are demographically older, have full-time jobs, and are raising families. Going back to school is not an option for many. Traveling to other states or provinces to take workshops is also not an option for many, so what can we do? This is where we can turn to technology. The technology available today provides Deaf Interpreters access to workshops and trainings they need to keep their skills sharp. With video conferences and learning management systems, Deaf Interpreters are able to gain knowledge through readings, videos, live interactions, role-playing, online discussions, and more. The options are endless. Combining this technology and the materials into a meaningful training program would provide Deaf Interpreting students the tools to carry the profession forward. It is a challenge, but doable with some thinking outside of the box. Of course, 40 hours is not enough for a Deaf Interpreter to become an expert. Becoming a Deaf Interpreter requires not only fluency in American Sign Language but also the ability to adapt and work with diverse language users with gestures, drawing, International 38
Sign Language, home signs, and so forth. While language skills are very important, other skills are also important: critical thinking, the ability to “think quick on your feet,” mediation between Deaf and hearing cultures, knowledge of basic ASL linguistics, proficiency in reading and writing English, the ability to process between two languages/modes of communication, the use of a variety of interpreting processes, the ability to work in a variety of settings, and most important of all: the ability to justify the value of Deaf interpreters. To help address the gaps in training and support the Deaf community, TRUE-BIZ ASL has developed a curriculum for Deaf Interpreters to contribute to this growing field. The Deaf Interpreter Training Online (DITO) program runs for five months with a total of eight live online group sessions taught by J. Sam Harris and myself, Keri Brooks, alternatively with one-on-one sessions at the end of the training. In between the sessions, there are online assignments to complete. As of Fall 2017, the fourth cohort is in session. Our experiences with the first three cohorts helped us to realize that the training has a two-punch effect, something that we did not originally expect. One, our DITO students gain the knowledge and skills in order to become a professional Deaf Interpreter. Two, our DITO students are educated about the value of Deaf Interpreters, something they will carry with them regardless if they move forward on the path towards becoming a Certified Deaf Interpreter. These students become better advocates for themselves now that they know their rights as Deaf consumers and understand the Code of Professional Conduct thoroughly. As collectivist community members, DITO students can pass on their knowledge of Deaf Interpreters to other community members. They can also become advocates for others and push for the use of Deaf Interpreters in their communities. We emphasize to our students on a regular basis that completion of the DITO training does NOT mean they are ready to become interpreters. What we do is provide them the information they need to know regarding the field and the tools that will carry them further on their Deaf Interpreting journey. Once they VIEWS Volume 34 • Issue 4
FEATURE have completed the training, the rest of the journey is up to them. At the end of the program, we conduct one-on-one sessions with each DITO student to have a dialogue about what they have noticed as their strengths and what skills they need to improve on. This self-analysis is an extremely important skill for Deaf interpreting; it is the ability to recognize where gaps exist and how to fill them. Even seasoned interpreters struggle with this seemingly simple skill, yet it is important and we work with each student to recognize their own skills and areas in need of improvement. With the latter, we invite them to think of different actions they could take to improve and direct them to resources that will help them meet their goals. Last but not least, learning how to provide and accept constructive feedback is important for Deaf Interpreting students. The DITO program focuses on what impacts the message and avoids over-analyzing the interpretation. For example, sign production can cause misunderstanding if the sign chosen does not match the concept intended. But because the DITO program’s focus is only on interpreting skills, students can supplement by taking the X ASL (Extreme ASL) course from TRUE-BIZ ASL to improve their sign production skills. This course is an advanced-level ASL course that provides lessons in ASL linguistics, classifiers, sentence structures, and ASL literature. In addition, the students are assigned narratives through which we can thoroughly analyze their ASL skills. Through this curriculum, we provide extensive feedback to assist students in the reduction of English interference and the increased use of classifiers and non-manual signals. With the sparse availability of trainings and workshops nationwide in the U.S. and Canada, it is all of our responsibility to make sure that information and tools are readily accessible to new and seasoned Deaf Interpreters. Today’s technology enables this but it does require some creativity and thinking outside of the box, which will open up a new world of possibilities for Deaf Interpreters throughout North America. The principles we have learned in developing the DITO program help to identify creative solutions for the continuing education of Deaf Interpreters. By providing options to Deaf Interpreters to receive www.rid.org
their training and eventually become certified, we ultimately sustain RID’s mission “to ensure equal opportunity and access for all individuals.” References NCIEC - National Consortium of Interpreter Education Centers (2007). Deaf Interpreter. Retrieved from http://www.interpretereducation.org/specialization/deaf-interpreter/ RID - Registry of Interpreter for the Deaf (2015). Previously Offered RID Certifications. Retrieved from http://www.rid.org/ rid-certification-overview/previously-offered-rid-certifications/
About the Author: Keri Brooks Keri Brooks was born Deaf to hearing parents and she has a Deaf brother. Together the family used sign language as Keri was growing up. Since 2005, Keri has been teaching ASL and interpreting courses at various colleges and universities, in addition to providing workshops at the regional and national level. With her partner J. Sam Harris, CDI, she co-owns TRUE-BIZ ASL, a business that provides ASL and interpreter education online in addition to interpreting services nationwide. Keri resides in Palm Harbor, Florida with Sam and together they are raising three young boys.
MEMBER SPOTLIGHT Jodi Upton, Ed:K-12 Region II: Ringgold, GA
In my interpreter survival kit I have…
Breath mints, a change of shirt - just in case of a spill, a pair of sneakers (in case of a last minute job requiring closed-toe shoes in a warehouse), deodorant, ibuprofen, band-aids. and safety pins. If I weren’t doing this I’d...
YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/S0aMD_hcj7A Hello! My name is Jodi Upton. My sign name looks like coffee with a “J” - because I am addicted to coffee! I live here in Ringgold, Georgia - in the northern part of the state, right around the Tennessee state line. While I live in Georgia, I work in Tennessee. I first joined RID as a student member back in 2008, and became a certified member about five years ago. I work full time as an educational interpreter, and part time for a local college in Georgia. I also do some freelance interpreting, and I am very involved in theatrical interpreting, which I love!
Still be working as a paraprofessional in my daughter’s school system. I started working in her elementary school a long time ago, and there I met an interpreter and became interested in interpreting. So, I left my job to go back to college and got my degree for interpreting. If I had not gone back to school for that degree, I would probably still be working in elementary education. When I’m not interpreting I enjoy… Musical theater - not only interpreting for the stage, but also going to see my daughter’s college performances. I also love Harry Potter, reading, and baking! My best piece of advice for new interpreters is…
Find a good mentor to help you through the in-between years after your ITP and before certification. I remember when I graduated, it was tough finding Working as an EIPA proctor and meeting new inter- a job because I needed certification and it was tough preters. I enjoy helping to ease their testing anxiety to get certification because I needed to practice and and making friends from all over the southeast. I train. It’s so important to find a good, strong menalso am a workshop junkie. Along with my coltor. My world changed when I found a mentor who league, Daniel Eimers, I helped to establish Southencouraged me and was willing to provide feedback, east Interpreters Network, a group that provides both positive and negative. It changed my life. Surprofessional development opportunities at little to no round yourself with skilled interpreters - they will cost for interpreters all across our area. In the past 5 bring you up. years, we have done a full 9 CEUs for attendees and have met hundreds of new faces in the area. I love My favorite quote is… being able to support other interpreters because I myself didn’t feel a lot of support from other inter“Your children make it impossible to regret your preters when I came into the field. past.” My favorite thing about being an interpreter is…
VIEWS Volume 34 • Issue 4
NEWLY CERTIFIED Certification awarded between 8/10/2017- 11/13/2017
National Interpreter Certification Region I Northeast
Region II Southeast
Region III Midwest
Lindsey Anne Donohue Kristen Hellewell Taylor Alexis Lutz Barbara Ann McCloud
Monique Clarke Erick Merritt Tamara Nicole Thompson Nolan Vaughan Ernest Williams
Tashina Crowe Kelsey Azar DeLonis Elizabeth Alvina Fausnaugh Josephine Heyl Anita Licea Erin B. Norton Kaci Trepanier
Region IV Central
Region V Pacific
Linda Arnott Amy Bourque Kelsey Lange Sarah Middleton
Katherine Ardizzone Laura Beth Blum Casie Byard Melissa Lee Champion Jessica Gibbons Nicole Harwood Charisse Josi Sarah Ellen Pettigrew Elizabeth Ann Smith
Region I Northeast
Region III Midwest
VIEWS Volume 34 â€˘ Issue 4
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