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Interpreter Spotlight

Meet Catherine Schaeffer

We’re excited to introduce you to Catherine Schaeffer, one of our dedicated interpreters at Language Partners.

What inspired you to pursue a career in translation or interpretation?

When I applied to Language Partners years ago, I was in a period of self-discovery. I wanted to pursue something meaningful and make an impact on our community. To be honest, before my journey with LP, I considered myself an outsider to the world of language services. All I had at that time were my language skills and a strong desire to connect with people and assist the community. Along the way, I have witnessed so many needs in language services in our community, and the appreciation from our clients and providers are heartwarming. I am so glad I made the decision years ago to work as an interpreter; the pursuit of serving others is what inspires me every day.

How do you prioritize and manage your workload, especially when juggling multiple projects?

To prioritize my workload, I first review each assignment thoroughly to ensure it aligns with my interpreting skill capacity. I accept requests that I am comfortable with, knowing I will do a good job. For long assignments, I try to accept only one job a day to avoid mental fatigue. My goal is to stay sharp and provide quality interpreting services from the beginning to the end of my shift. Somedays, I have several short interpreting assignments scheduled in different locations. I pay close attention to the travel time between my assignments, ensuring I have enough time to get to my next assignment at least 10-15 minutes early.

What advice would you give to someone considering a career in translation/interpretation?

Compassion, along with a desire to assist others, is a key quality for interpreters. Ultimately, it’s not about interpreters; the focus should be on facilitating communication between providers and their clients. Don’t hesitate to try new things; practice is essential for improvement. Stepping out of your comfort zone to interpret in unfamiliar settings can be beneficial, but it requires training. Make use of all training opportunities available to you. The more you learn and practice, the more confident you’ll become in interpreting in various settings.

What advice would you give to someone considering a career at Language Partners based on your experiences?

Language Partners is an agency that respects its interpreters. Interpreters have the space to speak up and reach out. The scheduling team is always helpful, answering questions and listening to our concerns. I really enjoy the personal connection, knowing I always receive the support I need. Language Partners provides many great training opportunities. Currently, LP interpreters have the opportunity to participate in in-house training sessions every Friday. As interpreters, we already appreciate all the training opportunities offered.

Join us as we celebrate our one-year anniversary as a private company!

We are privileged to collaborate with so many exceptional and dedicated interpreters in Maine and beyond. Join us to hear our stories and celebrate our one-year anniversary as a standalone LLC. We would love to see you at our ribbon-cutting event at the Portland Regional Chamber of Commerce on April 10th! Please register via the link below.

Register Today

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

2PM – 4PM (ET)

93 Exchange St, Portland, ME 04101