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Career and Education Opportunities for Interpreters in Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Interpreter career and educational opportunities abound in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. About 560 people are currently employed as interpreters in Iowa. By 2016, this is expected to grow by 21% to 680 people employed. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for interpreters are expected to grow by about 22.2%. Interpreters generally translate or interpret written, oral, or sign language text into another language for others.

Interpreters earn about $14 per hour or $30,630 yearly on average in Iowa and about $18 per hour or $38,850 yearly on average nationally. Interpreters work in a variety of jobs, including: linguist, medical interpreter, and language translator.

There are thirteen schools of higher education in the Cedar Rapids area, including four within twenty-five miles of Cedar Rapids where you can get a degree to start your career as an interpreter. Given that the most common education level for interpreters is an Associate's, or other 2-year degree, you can expect to spend about two years training to become an interpreter if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Interpreter

Interpreter video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, interpreters translate or interpret written, oral, or sign language text into another language for others.

Interpreters follow ethical codes that protect the confidentiality of data. They also refer to reference materials, such as dictionaries and computerized terminology banks, as needed to insure translation accuracy. Finally, interpreters identify and resolve conflicts pertaining to the meanings of words or behaviors.

Every day, interpreters are expected to be able to understand what others are saying to them even in a noisy environment. They need to speak clearly. It is also important that they articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for interpreters to check translations of technical terms and terminology to insure that they are accurate and remain consistent throughout translation revisions. They are often called upon to translate messages simultaneously or consecutively into specified languages, orally or by using hand signs, maintaining message content and style as much as possible. They also compile terminology and data to be used in translations, including technical terms such as those for legal or medical material. They are sometimes expected to proofread and revise translated materials. Somewhat less frequently, interpreters are also expected to adapt translations to students' cognitive and grade levels, collaborating with educational team members as needed.

Interpreters sometimes are asked to train and supervise other translators or interpreters. And finally, they sometimes have to translate messages simultaneously or consecutively into specified languages, orally or by using hand signs, maintaining message content and style as much as possible.

Like many other jobs, interpreters must be reliable and have exceptional integrity.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Cedar Rapids include:

  • Music Director. Direct and conduct instrumental or vocal performances by musical groups.
  • Public Relations Specialist. Engage in promoting or creating good will for individuals, groups, or organizations by writing or selecting favorable publicity material and releasing it through various communications media. May prepare and arrange displays, and make speeches.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Interpreter Training

Coe College - Cedar Rapids, IA

Coe College, 1220 First Ave NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402-5092. Coe College is a small college located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,326 students and an admission rate of 63%. Coe College has 3 areas of study related to Interpreter. They are:

  • German Language and Literature, bachelor's degree.
  • French Language and Literature, bachelor's degree which graduated 2 students in 2008.
  • Spanish Language and Literature, bachelor's degree which graduated 5 students in 2008.

Kirkwood Community College - Cedar Rapids, IA

Kirkwood Community College, 6301 Kirkwood Blvd SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52406-2068. Kirkwood Community College is a large college located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,241 students. Kirkwood Community College has an associate's degree program in Sign Language Interpretation and Translation which graduated five students in 2008.

Cornell College - Mount Vernon, IA

Cornell College, 600 First St. SW, Mount Vernon, IA 52314-1098. Cornell College is a small college located in Mount Vernon, Iowa. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,115 students and an admission rate of 44%. Cornell College has 5 areas of study related to Interpreter. They are:

  • Russian Language and Literature, bachelor's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.
  • German Language and Literature, bachelor's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.
  • French Language and Literature, bachelor's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.
  • Spanish Language and Literature, bachelor's degree which graduated 7 students in 2008.
  • Classics & Classical Languages, Literatures, & Linguistics, bachelor's degree.

University of Iowa - Iowa City, IA

University of Iowa, 101 Jessup Hall, Iowa City, IA 52242-1316. University of Iowa is a large university located in Iowa City, Iowa. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 29,475 students and an admission rate of 82%. University of Iowa has 11 areas of study related to Interpreter. They are:

  • Linguistics, bachelor's degree, postbaccalaureate certificate, master's degree, and doctor's degree which graduated nine, zero, nine, and two students respectively in 2008.
  • Russian Language and Literature, bachelor's degree and postbaccalaureate certificate which graduated seven and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • German Language and Literature, bachelor's degree, postbaccalaureate certificate, and master's degree which graduated three, zero, and two students respectively in 2008.
  • French Language and Literature, bachelor's degree, postbaccalaureate certificate, and doctor's degree which graduated eleven, zero, and two students respectively in 2008.
  • Italian Language and Literature, postbaccalaureate certificate.
  • Portuguese Language and Literature, bachelor's degree and postbaccalaureate certificate which graduated two and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Spanish Language and Literature, bachelor's degree, postbaccalaureate certificate, master's degree, and doctor's degree which graduated twenty-three, zero, five, and one students respectively in 2008.
  • Classics & Classical Languages, Literatures, & Linguistics, bachelor's degree, postbaccalaureate certificate, and master's degree which graduated three, two, and two students respectively in 2008.
  • Ancient/Classical Greek Language and Literature, bachelor's degree, postbaccalaureate certificate, and master's degree.
  • Latin Language and Literature, postbaccalaureate certificate and master's degree which graduated zero and one students respectively in 2008.
  • American Sign Language, postbaccalaureate certificate which graduated 10 students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

National Judiciary Interpreter and Translator Certification: Achieving the credential of Nationally Certified Judiciary Interpreter and Translator (NCJIT) shows your commitment to upholding the highest standards in the profession.

For more information, see the National Association of Judiciary Interpreters and Translators website.

LICENSES

Interpreter for the Deaf

Licensing agency: Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc.
Address: Deaf Services Commission of Iowa, Iowa Department of Human Rights, Lucas State Office Building, 321 E 12th St, Des Moines, IA 50319

Phone: (515) 281-4302
Website: Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc. Deaf Services Commission of Iowa Iowa Department of Human Rights

LOCATION INFORMATION: Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Cedar Rapids, Iowa photo by Davumaya

Cedar Rapids is located in Linn County, Iowa. It has a population of over 128,056, which has grown by 6.0% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Cedar Rapids, 78, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Cedar Rapids are valued at $103,900 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, two hundred ninety-nine new homes were built in Cedar Rapids, up from two hundred ninety-eight the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Cedar Rapids are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 17 minutes. More than 28.4% of Cedar Rapids residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.4%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Cedar Rapids is 6.0%, which is less than Iowa's average of 6.1%.

The percentage of Cedar Rapids residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.0%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Seventh Day Church of God, Sevanth-Day Adventist Church and Hope Lutheran Church are some of the churches located in Cedar Rapids. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the United Methodist Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Cedar Rapids is home to the Brucemore and the Admissions Office as well as Tomahawk Park and Noelridge Park. Shopping centers in the area include Mays Shopping Center, Lindale Plaza Shopping Center and Town and Country Shopping Center. Visitors to Cedar Rapids can choose from Howard Johnson, Marriott Cedar Rapids and Clarion Hotel & Convention Center for temporary stays in the area.