Association

Translation associations

Why you should join one

In Italy, a lot of professions are protected through specific registers, welfare funds and other public tools. However, the linguist profession unfortunately doesn’t fall into any of these categories.

So, how can we stay in touch with our working environment and be adequately protected?

A great solution is professional or trade associations. There are various organisations like this for linguists around the world, such as the CIOL in the UK, ATA in the USA and various others in Italy. 

In this blog post, we’ll talk about the practical advantages of being part of an association and I’ll also share my experience as a member of ANITI, the Italian National Association of Translators and Interpreters.

Networking

networking event

Those who are active to any degree in the many online communities of linguists have surely already heard of the importance of networking. There are many good reasons to get in touch with other professionals and create and nurture fruitful relationships. Here are some examples:

  • it helps us feel less isolated, given that we often work at home and alone;
  • it gives us an opportunity to grow by sharing tips and advice;
  • it can be a source of projects in the form of collaborations or thanks to colleagues who refer us for jobs that they can’t do.

Being part of a professional association offers all these advantages and the best part is that you can also meet people in real life.

Events

training event

Taking part in events allows us to grow professionally and meet other experts in our field. Professional associations for translators regularly organise meetups for their members, in particular annual assemblies. Other events are often held, which are either organised by the association or the association takes part in them. As an example from my experience as a member of the ANITI association, in 2021 I attended a seminar about Arabic literature as part of the Festival delle Letterature Migranti in Palermo and I actively took part in the Hansa Para World Sailing Championship, in the same city. This sporting event was an incredible opportunity for me to put myself out there and practise my language skills with extraordinary colleagues. These two events took place in Palermo, where I currently live, but other meetups and activities are organised in different parts of Italy too, so that all members can participate.

The last event I took part in was the annual national assembly of ANITI, which took place in Milan at the end of April 2022. On this occasion, I again saw colleagues I already knew and others who I met for the first time during this intense day of training and sharing.

Professional recognition

When there are no registers for translators and interpreters, how can potential clients trust us before knowing us? Being part of a professional association is a guarantee for them and a further tool for us to stand out among all the professionals offering their services on the market. So, if you belong to a professional association, remember to share your membership logo on your marketing materials such as your website, CV and portfolio etc.

Continuing professional development and updates

Professional associations usually send out regular newsletters to their members to inform them about job opportunities, official updates and training sessions. The latter are sometimes organised by the associations themselves and are often discounted for their members.

Conclusion

There are so many reasons to be part of an association of translators. My experience so far has been positive and I’d urge anyone to give it a try.

Do you know any other advantages (or disadvantages) of professional associations?

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