Certified Interpreters & Their Connection To The First Thanksgiving
Certified interpreters are the bilingual adults who have dedicated their time and efforts towards ensuring that everyone should be able to communicate with each other- regardless of the language they understand. Their job is more involved than just being bilingual... although it certainly helps. Certified interpreters are the people who have attended interpreter school and then gone on to get official certification through their states' licensing board. It takes a lot of time and effort to become a certified interpreter but for a truly great interpreter- their education and training is never complete. Because they understand that there is more to the profession than being bilingual, and they recognize that language is as much about vocabulary as it is situational. Take yourself, for example. You speak differently to your friends than you do to at your job. Especially if you have a specialized career, like a surgeon for example, who spent years studying and perfecting their field... They would explain a procedure to a coworker using a far more complex vocabulary than they would explain it to their patient, who requires the same explanation just with a more common terminology. Our interpreter training programs are taught by expert instructors ✅who have real-world interpreting experience- as medical interpreters, legal interpreters, immigration interpreters, and any other online interpreter training course we provide. They have created their individual interpreting training courses to be unique and engaging✅ for their students, who will always receive LIVE instruction✅ as all of our online courses use video conferencing webinar formatting✅. As we continue to educate the next generation of language interpreters, and language translators our thoughts travel back in time. How was the first Thanksgiving possible? How were the Native Americans able to communicate with the colonialist settlers?
There weren't certified interpreters at the first Thanksgiving
... but there was Tisquantum aka "Squanto"
Today, we call him "Squanto" but his true name was Tisquantum. Born 1585 to the Patuxet tribe who belonged to the larger Wampanoag confederation living at Plymouth, he was born speaking Wopanaotooaok - his native language. At 29 years old, Tisquantum was captured and sold into slavery along with several other members of his tribe. Although we don't know exactly what he was doing in Europe, historians estimate that he spent four years as a slave in Spain and England... where he ultimately learned English. Somehow, Tisquantum not only managed to escape his enslavement, but he also joined the Newfoundland Company, and returned back to North America in 1619 as an interpreter for Captain Thomas Dermer on a trade mission to the colonies. Tragically, he arrived home just in time to witness the peak of "The Great Dying" - most likely smallpox, brought upon the tribe by European traders- as it reached its horrific climax that wiped out his Patuxet tribe completely.
In 1620, just one year after his return home, "Squanto" witnessed the arrival of the Mayflower landing in Plymouth. He also witnessed his English captors struggle through the harsh winter months. Having all the knowledge of his native land, Tisquantum was able to teach the surviving European settlers how to farm even in winter, forage for nuts and berries and how to survive the future winters to come. Every year, people in the United States celebrate Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday of November. We do this in remembrance of the Pilgrim settlers and the indigenous Wampanoag, who feasted for three days all those years ago. Without Squanto, the colonists would not have survived the looming winter, and the first Thanksgiving wouldn't have happened as it did in 1621.
For the rest of his life, Tisquantum was able to leverage his language skills into a highly valuable position as a language interpreter between the many tribes of the Wampanoag confederation, and the English settlers. Keenly aware of just how valuable he had become, "Squanto" ultimately became chief of the Wampanoag tribe, and remained a member of the Plymouth colony as well. He was relied upon by the governor of Plymouth plantation to develop trade agreements with native tribes for the rest of his life.
Although his story is stained by tragedy and suffering, Tisquantum or "Squanto" became one of the first, and arguably one of the most renowned interpreters of American history. Even all these centuries later, there are many lessons to learn and morals we can take away from his story, but one of the most basic learnings is: we have Thanksgiving because of Squanto, and certified interpreters walk in his shadow everyday. May we all remember his contributions and celebrate his life as we feast this Thanksgiving.
Our online translator classes are taught by expert instructors ✅ who have real-world experience in their interpreting specialty. They have worked hard to make fully remote online courses that are unique and engaging ✅ and use a hands-on approach that is unparalleled by the competition. If you or someone you know is interested in our online Medical Interpreter Training Programs with live instruction✅, our fully remote yet real time classes ✅ are offered in Spanish, Portuguese, Arabic, Russian, Chinese, Haitian Creole, Vietnamese, Farsi, French, Hindi, Korean, Somali, Urdu, Ukrainian languages online and onsite.
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