Summer internship and translation management training report by Sneha Karati Japanese translator

17. 09. 19
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By Sneha Karati

About the internship

The internship was under Modlingua learning Pvt. Ltd. An ISO 9001:2008 Certified Translation and Interpretation company based in New Delhi, India. The internship at Modlingua was of approximately two and a half months, beginning with its orientation program on June 07, 2017 and formal closing session on August 14, 2017. The summer internship program was on Entrepreneurship and Professional Development of Translators, Interpreters and Language Professionals. It was an online internship and thus facilitated the involvement of interns from countries all over the world, as many as 20 foreign countries and over 250 applicants. During the duration of the course we had weekly meetings with our supervisor and founder, Director of Modlingua Learning, Mr. Ravi Kumar via. GoToMeeting, an online platform for organizing meetings.
Purpose of the Internship

The focus of the internship program was to make existing and future translators and interpreters aware of the non-translation aspects of translation such as business development, online marketing, social media marketing, project management, entrepreneurship etc.
Things learnt

Our assignments were based on the meetings and the research followed on the subject concerned which were not just informative but taught us one new aspect of the translation industry. For instance, our first assignment was to create our professional profile at modlingua. By creating a profile, not only were we formally a part of the internship but it also gave us an identity since it included our profile picture and the link to our profile. The profile also introduced us officially into the market and the link helped in accessing our assignments for future referral. Apart from creating the profile we had to choose any four areas in which we wanted to develop core competency such as content writing and citizen journalism, project management and quality standards, entrepreneurship, business development, socila media marketing, online marketing, computer assisted tools (CAT Tools), blogging, web development, YouTubing and video casting. The areas I chose were: content writing and citizen journalism, project management and quality standards, entrepreneurship and business development. In between the first and second assignment, the members of citizen journalism team had brief on what we can do as a citizen journalist at modlingua, and promoted our profiles and shared valuable articles in social sites.

Alongside assignment we had many more interactions on both formal and informal level. For instance, sir Ravi Kumar provided us with images in relation with translation and language professionals. To name a few: the wolf pack photograph taken by David Attenborough for the BBC's "Frozen Planet" Series, ant networking system. These two were also an option to choose from for our second assignment and we were provided with four options for each and every assignment. For my second assignment, I chose to write on the Power Politics of Languages for which I got to read translation-research on "The Global System of Translation: A Critical Analysis". The research deals with a critical study of the research "outline for a sociology of translation: Current issues and future prospects" by Heilbron, Johan and Sapiro, Gisele. 2007.

For the third assignment we had an online meeting about google search engine, relationship between content writing, online marketing and translation, globalization, localization, internationalization and translation of content and then write about any one of this topic. I chose to write on "the benefits of top ranking in google search for translators and multilingual writer". For the fourth assignment, we had a conference-lecture with Prof. Ioanna about entrepreneurship and personal branding for translator while learning the differences between in-house translators and freelances. This meeting gave us valuable insights on the visibility of the language professional in society, how to gain clients being freelancers as an alternate option doe language professional. My fourth assignment was on "power relations in society and the position of a translator".

For the fifth assignment we had a meeting on quality standards and its connection to translation services, the development of various quality standards in translation process across the globe, the equal roles of linguistic and non-linguistic aspects in translation and quality standards' function in this balance. I chose to write on quality standards and its application in translation services. And for the sixth and last assignment we had a meeting on project management, and translation management, the role of character and documentation in project management.

Comments about the teaching methodology
We had formal meeting sessions through online platform, GoToMeeting, and it was no less than a regular classroom environment where students could raise questions regarding the topic of discussion and consult on the same topic or on methods of how to deal with a certain topic, and the subjects were practical knowledge required in this field of work. It opened us to the ground reality of things that go into the field of translation.

For the convenience of the students, our mentor used to organize polls a day before the scheduled date of meeting on the official page of Modlingua on Facebook, so that timings could be decided according to the preference of the students. Generally two timings were selected and students could choose to come according to the time suitable to them.

The classroom discussions were power point presentation by our mentor, Ravi Kumar, who gave us insights on the mechanism of the translation business. He also recommended us books and sources for further reading if we wish to grasp a better knowledge of the topic of discussion. Apart from the subject concerned, sir also used to provide us business etiquette and knowledge in the field of translation. The dos and don'ts one should be mindful of before one takes up a project or any task. Sir also uploaded a recorded session of the class for future reference had anyone missed the class and since our assignments were based on the discussion and presentations of Mr. Kumar we could replay it on Youtube whenever we wanted.

Learning outcome: expectations and how far they were achieved
It was baffling and enlightening at the same time to know how much input and work goes into the creation of a single translation. Being a new comer in this field, I was naive to believe that translation is outcome of transcription from one language to another and only requires the work force of the translator. But a translation is much more than the involvement of client and the translator or the service provider. I cannot even say if this internship met my expectations or not because first and foremost it introduced me to different aspects of translation that one isn't even aware of if you are new to this field. Despite learning translation from a prestigious university we are never told about the knowhow that are pre-requisite and almost like a second nature in your profession. I can certainly say I definitely achieved a lot from this internship experience.

Overall assessment and conclusion

This was my first internship and it will stay as a memorable one forever. To think someone goes at length to share his knowledge and experience and make us understand the same through assignments and projects of similar scope, it's highly commendable on Modlingua's part in spite of everything happening online and without any direct interaction. Mr. Ravi Kumar also provided us with his personal number so that we may ask doubts and queries if we may not be able to ask during our formal meetings. He also used to and still provides us information, articles and blogs related to translation. And because of the YouTube videos people apart from the interns could also get to know about his valuable teachings. Despite of not being able to meet directly all the interns collectively felt and came to realize a bond of being a part of community of translators. This is one of the most important advices that our mentor reiterated from time to time and unknowingly we came to feel this sense of close-knit family; and how this works on a global scenario, of translators as not just mediators in bilateral relations but also as nation builders.

About Modlingua

“Modlingua Learning Pvt. Ltd.” (Modlingua®) aims at becoming your preferred language partner by delivering high quality language solutions within the stipulated time and at competitive prices. They rely upon a team of professionals comprising highly qualified scholars, professors, lawyers, engineers, managers and technocrats. Their team members are either native speakers or have taken formal language training in the native countries. Special attention is paid to ensure that their translators not just possess excellent academic credentials but are also sufficiently experienced in specific domains. They also make sure that all their freelance translators are in tune with their translation-localization methodology and quality control process that is based on a demonstrated system of best practices. They emphasize on translation quality, global project management, task automation, process consistency, flexibility and customer service.

With a view to remain abreast with the rapidly changing technology scenarios, Modlingua team has adapted itself by constantly upgrading its domain expertise in the translation industry and adapting to meet ever-changing technology needs including Localization and CAT tools as per the needs of clients. Their innovative project management system “HRLingua” serves as a database repository of 5000-plus translators from India and abroad. This platform helps in having an easy access to the global community of language professionals and translators who constantly maintain contact with the Modlingua team.

Modlingua enjoys an international reputation of being a socially responsible company involved in promotion and development of translation profession within India and across the globe. They have been regularly organizing events, seminars and conferences on various themes related to translation, project management, culture studies and social media. They maintain a consultative relationship with various government agencies, universities and research centers across the globe.

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