two participants having discussion in sign

Reflections on the 2015 Symposium

The Third National Symposium on Healthcare Interpreting is now a week in the past and I just wanted to offer some reflections on the experience.

Here’s a few thoughts:

  1. Importance of networking:  National conferences with a specific focus are great opportunities to meet other professionals with similar passions and interests.  More than that, it is a chance to receive the benefits of others intellectual endeavors.  Personally, a number of the presentations (both plenary and breakouts) really left me food for thought that I will be chewing on for the rest of the summer.  I would guess that is probably true for many of the other participants.  Just what ideas resonated with each of us may have differed, but I hope we have all left with new visions for how to carry out our craft.
  2. Example of interpreting team:  The conference interpreting team not only provided a high level Interpreting team discussing with students and recent gradsof access for attendees at the conference.  They also provided a great example of working together and being willing to share their lessons as team with others.  A great moment was lunch on Friday when the interpreting team met with students and others who were interested in hearing their process of working together for the symposium.  This was a great example of what it means to be part of a practice profession and be able to engage in reflective practice.  Thanks to the entire team and Paula Gajewski-Mickelson for coordinating their efforts.
  3. Value of Life-Long Learning:  In the age of CEUs, it is easy to be cynical about workshop opportunities.  So many people attend workshops under the deadlines of CEU cycles that it is hard to feel like continuing education is really meaningful.  At the symposium, I saw lots of evidence of people who were attending because of their passion about their practice and delivering quality services to patients.  I am not naive enough to believe that people weren’t also attending because of
    Participants discussion

    An example of engaged learning at the Symposium
    Photo Credit: Rebecca Zenefski, By Rebecca Studios

    the need for CEUs, but what was much more apparent to me was the commitment to life-long learning.  In that vein, feel free to join this conversation.

    What did you learn from attending?
    If you didn’t attend, what questions do you have?

    Perhaps those who were there can jump in and share some insights and perspectives.