Learning, Sharing and Fun: 4th Annual Translation and Interpreting Workshop
by Agnes Li
The fourth instalment of the Translation and Interpreting Workshop was held on April 16, 2011. The Japanese Language Interest Group of STIBC (Society of Translators and Interpreters of British Columbia) who organizes the yearly event welcomed both new and familiar faces. Regardless of the amount of experience, active and aspiring translators and interpreters were challenged to a packed day of learning, sharing and fun.
After a brief introduction by veteran translator Masako Sharpe, the workshop kicked into full gear with one hour of the English to Japanese Translation Workshop followed by another hour of the Japanese to English Translation Workshop. The participants had a choice of two varied but interesting articles to translate for each of the two workshops. For the English to Japanese translation, participants chose between an article on the anti-Asian riots of 1907 (facilitated by Tatsuo Kage, a prominent figure in the Japanese-Canadian community) and an article on Japan’s white-collar hiring policies (facilitated by Masaru Nagashima who teaches court interpreting at Vancouver Community College). For the Japanese to English translation, participants chose between an article on anpan, or red bean buns, (facilitated by Stan Fukawa, who is a former instructor at Malaspina College, now known as Vancouver Island University) and an article on the movie, The King’s Speech (facilitated by Kumi Hardin and Agnes Li, both certified translators). The informal atmosphere across all sessions encouraged a good exchange of ideas as the participants discussed their translations and the reasoning behind their usage of certain words and phrases.
The workshop shifted its focus from translation to court interpreting after a well-deserved half-hour break. Led by Yoshie Hancock, a certified court and medical interpreter, the hour-long session began with a mock trial staged by several members of the interpreting community. This was followed by the participants watching video clips on court interpreting. Finally, participants got a glimpse of how court interpreters were trained by taking part in actual drills used to train court interpreters. Yasuko Garlick, a certified translator and a recent graduate of the Court Interpreting Program at Vancouver Community College, also gave an informative talk about her experiences in the Court Interpreting Program.
The final event of the day was a panel discussion moderated by Yuko Ikegami, a certified translator. The panellists consisted of Tatsuo Kage, Masaru Nagashima, Masako Sharpe and Yoshie Hancock. The panel discussion provided a rare opportunity for participants to ask questions to four well-respected professionals. The panellists did not disappoint as they provided insight into everything from how and why they became translators and interpreters to advice on the best way to relieve work-related stress.
In four short years, the Translation and Interpreting Workshop has established itself in the Japanese translation and interpreting community as a workshop that cannot be missed. Next year marks the fifth year that the Japanese Language Interest Group of STIBC has been hosting the workshop. Planning is already underway in anticipation of that big milestone. Next year’s workshop is sure to be spectacular.
Agnes Li is a certified translator (Japanese to English). She can be seen wearing her yukata at the Powell Street Festival as she helps her mother support Tonari Gumi every year.