The ATA Chronicle - November/December 2020 - 10

OUTREACH REPORT

BY BIRGIT VOSSELER-BREHMER

Giovanna Lester Wins 2019-2020
ATA School Outreach Contest

A

TA member and active volunteer
Giovanna Lester, a conference
interpreter and an ATA-certified
Portuguese>English translator based in
Miami, Florida, won a free registration
to ATA's 61st Annual Conference
through ATA's 2019-2020 School
Outreach Contest.
Giovanna won the contest for her
virtual presentation to students from
Farmington R7 School in Missouri.
She spoke to the 22 students aged 8 to
14 through the school's language and
culture program.
A passionate veteran of ATA's School
Outreach Program, Giovanna has a long
history of presenting at her daughter's
schools over the years. Since her
daughter is older now, the opportunity
to present at these schools doesn't
arise as often. After schools closed in
South Florida and elsewhere due to
the pandemic, Giovanna happened
to see that School Outreach Program
Coordinator and ATA Director
Meghan Konkol was looking for a
virtual presenter for an opportunity
with Farmington R7 School. She
immediately volunteered.
Giovanna learned more details about
the language and culture program at
Farmington R7 and coordinated with
teacher Jennifer Aholt for a Zoom
presentation in June. She worked
closely with Aholt to ensure that the
students, their parents, and the class
chaperones remained focused and
could interact with her discussions
on foreign languages and cultures
expressed through music, clothing,
food, literature, and technology.
Giovanna enjoyed the active
participation of the students, and
even noted the involvement of some
enthusiastic parents.
This was Giovanna's first virtual
School Outreach presentation. Asked
about the advantages of virtual versus
in-person presentations, she says she
values " being able to reach a public
10

The ATA Chronicle | November/December 2020

I would not otherwise have reached "
and " taking the knowledge of these two
professions to communities where they
are not even offered as such. "

WHAT IS ATA'S SCHOOL
OUTREACH PROGRAM?
For 16 years, ATA's School Outreach
Program has been raising awareness of
the role that translators and interpreters
play in business, government, and
society at large. With several sources
predicting major growth in the demand
for professional translators and
interpreters, this program continues
to build awareness of careers in the
language industry. As our world
becomes more integrated globally,
businesses and governments are
realizing the importance of using skilled
professional translators and interpreters
to communicate their message
effectively and successfully to global
audiences, avoiding potentially costly
and embarrassing mistakes.
ATA launched the School Outreach
Program in 2004 to educate students
about translation and interpreting and
to interest them in these rewarding
career fields. Through the program,
professional linguists speak to students
at all levels, highlighting the career
benefits of learning another language
and the increasing potential for exciting
work with language skills. Using a

WIN A FREE REGISTRATION TO
ATA62-2020-2021 SCHOOL
OUTREACH CONTEST NOW OPEN!
The 2020-2021 School Outreach Contest is
now open! Virtual presentations are eligible
for entry into the School Outreach Contest.
The winner will receive a free registration to
ATA's 62nd Annual Conference in Minneapolis,
Minnesota (October 27-30, 2021). For
more information, visit www.atanet.org/
ata_school/school_outreach_contest.php.

variety of model presentations and
activities available on ATA's website,
presenters outline the requirements
for becoming a professional translator
or interpreter, emphasizing that these
careers demand far more than simply
being bilingual.
" By participating in the School
Outreach Program, translators and
interpreters share valuable information
not only with the next generation of
linguists, but also the next generation
of language services clients, " says
Meghan Konkol. " Our program focuses
on educating the public about these
exciting career paths and their wide
range of applications around the world. "
To receive this award, participants
must belong to ATA or an ATA chapter
or an ATA-affiliated organization and
must deliver a presentation for a school
of their choice. To learn more about
ATA's School Outreach Program, visit
www.atanet.org/ata_school.
Birgit Vosseler-Brehmer,
CT is an ATA-certified
English<>German freelance
translator based in Germany.
She specializes in technical,
business management,
and document translations. She is a member
of ATA's School Outreach team.
Contact: bvb@bvb-translations.com.
www.atanet.org


http://www.atanet.org/ata_school https://www.atanet.org/ata_school/school_outreach_contest.ph https://www.atanet.org/ata_school/school_outreach_contest.ph http://www.atanet.org

The ATA Chronicle - November/December 2020

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