March 29, 2020

Recent MS in Translation Graduate and AFTI Scholarship Winner Carol Lujan Finds Connection at ATA Conference

Recent MS in Translation (MST) graduate Carol Lujan, who completed the program in January 2019, found both community and her first post-MST job at the 2019 American Translators Association (ATA) conference in Palm Springs. Her trip was supported by a new annual scholarship from the American Foundation for Translation and Interpretation (AFTI). AFTI has established these student scholarships to defray the cost of attending ATA.   

The AFTI scholarship allowed Lujan to access the professional and intellectual resources of the conference. “I learned a lot more about the translation and localization industries,” she says. Lujan also met with other scholarship recipients and was featured in the ATA Chronicle.

She used this opportunity to connect with MST classmates and faculty members, including MST Academic Director Annelise Finegan Wasmoen. “I even saw a classmate in the pool of the hotel I stayed at, she recalls. “It was such a coincidence!” 

In addition to a stronger professional network, Lujan’s trip to the ATA conference resulted in a job offer. “I met a recruiter with whom I had an interview over the phone a couple of weeks before the conference and I ended up being hired,” she says. In her new role as a foreign language analyst for the government contractor Amentum, Lujan is applying the skills she acquired in the MST, while continuing to extend her knowledge of the field. “I love the positive team vibe and everyone is very cooperative,” she reports of Amentum. “I have learned to work with different publishing tools. I write in English with a journalistic style and translate into English as well.” 

“A translator has a huge responsibility towards her audience and her clients, and being bilingual is never enough to perform this role with the seriousness that it deserves,” Lujan states. “I strongly believe that obtaining my MS in Translation has opened the door to many opportunities, including attending the ATA conference.” The 2020 ATA conference is scheduled to be held in Boston this October. MST students and recent graduates can apply for an AFTI scholarship in the spring. 



A translation degree can help you to take charge of your career, whether you are new to the field or already working in the language professions. Apply for CALA’s MS in Translation & Interpreting, a fully online, 36-credit graduate degree.


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