SEIS Academic Forum Series （No.705）
Forum on Interpreting Studies
The Rise of Community Interpreting and It’s Effect on University Interpreter Training Programs
Speaker: Dr. Suzanne Zeng
Date: 5 December, 2018 (Wednesday)
Venue: seminar hall, 4th floor, BFSU Library
Abstract: Immigration, migration and the ease of travel has taken a toll on governments in the area of communication with speakers of different languages. Government agencies, hospitals and the courts have had to grapple with miscommunication and poor interpreters to the point of desperation. Whereas organizers of international conferences, diplomatic meetings and international trade find interpreters from traditional university interpreting programs, small government agencies, hospitals and the courts have been forced to use bilingual staff, friends and family, or even a passing janitor who happens to speak the language of the client to help in the communication. The lack of quality interpreters have led to wrong diagnosis, unnecessary procedures, unfair trials and wrong convictions.
This talk will discuss the rise of community interpreting as a profession, the change of status and pay among interpreters, the certification of community interpreters now available, and the training that has developed for community interpreters in US universities and elsewhere. This professionalization of community interpreting has forced universities throughout the US and Europe to rethink its place in their translation and interpreting programs.
About the speaker: Dr. Suzanne Zeng is Associate Professor and Director of the Center for Interpretation and Translation Studies (CITS), at the University of Hawaii. She is passionate about bringing equality to limited English speakers by producing well trained language interpreters for community settings, such as for the courts and hospitals. Besides teaching, she has conducted numerous workshops at home and abroad, and is a highly sought-out speaker and trainer. As a long-standing member of the Supreme Court Committee for Court Interpreters, Dr. Zeng was actively involved in establishing higher standards and certification for Hawaii State court interpreters, and has recently been active in the certification of medical interpeters in languages used in Hawaii. She is a governor-appointed Advisory Council member of the Hawaii Office of Language Access, and as a Certified Chinese-English Conference Interpreter, actively interprets herself. Dr. Zeng received her Ph.D. in Chinese Linguistics from the University of Hawaii.