The official newsletter of the
National Board of Certification
for Medical Interpreters (NBCMI)

Inside this issue:

A Message from our Chair


Spring is in the air...

I love the saying: "An optimist is the human personification of spring". Spring is one of my favorite seasons because of everything it represents. It is not just the change of the season to warmer temperatures, more time outdoors, blooming flowers, birds building nests, but the rebirth and renewal. Everything looks brighter and greener and new hope for a better year away from the pandemic fills our hearts with a sense of progress and excitement.

Regardless of our optimism, there is always something else to worry about for humanity: War. There are so many countries suffering conflicts at the present, but by far Russian-Ukraine has taken center stage in a media feeding frenzy. Many colleagues have expressed frustration-some perceive that this war seems to be viewed under a different light than earlier global conflicts that affected them personally. People with family and friends in Ukraine and Russia may feel an even greater degree of grief and despair. Other groups—including veterans, immigrants and refugees—may experience post-traumatic distress.

The whole world has transformed into a state where everyone has to choose among fear, hostility and hatred. Athletes and artists have been seriously impacted not because of their beliefs but their nationality, erasing our faith in "neutrality" for those worlds. The source and severity of reactions will differ among the different places we work at, including restaurants, schools and community services, turning the workplace in a peril environment. As a National Certification Institution, a community of Professional Interpreters, and as citizens of the world, this provides the opportunity to show care and concern for the Interpreter community, to learn from, explore and lead at a difficult time, with compassion and empathy.

Now, perhaps more than ever, it is really important that we think about how our actions affect others and the world around us. Despite the hardships, I am inspired by stories of our hard-working community continuing to care and serve our LEP patients and families, and to strive to do the right thing in their communities and beyond in the hope of this better tomorrow. The National Board has given great thought to how we can boost that proactive force for good on an ample scale in our everyday work and strengthen our commitment to our community, ensuring we are thorough with what is right, not just what is needed.

No one should be judged by their nationality or heritage. We encourage our community from all backgrounds, who feels affected or discriminated against to take this opportunity to re-familiarize yourself with the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), the general standards regarding political speech in the workplace, and support services available. States like California may have their own legislation protecting employees against discrimination. "Federal equal employment laws prohibit discrimination based on national origin, including ethnic background. The EEOC's position is that treating someone unfavorably because of their ethnic background or national origin is illegal..." (1)

It is unknown what the future holds and we have learned this with the pandemic, but we all must be prepared to deal with long-lasting effects of global crisis. Let's keep going with optimism and contribute as we continue each day as global citizens, handling new and sometimes conflicting priorities, protecting our rights, our family, our safety, our children, our work, with faith on humanity's power of rebirth and renewal.

Wishing you the best always,

Xiomara Armas, CMI-Spanish, BBA

(1) Elizabeth Whitman. Whitman Legal Solutions, LLC. March 21, 2022. Can Employers stop Employees Retrieved from: https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/can-employers-stop-employees-from-7887720/

  SPRING 2022 | ISSUE 5  

Call for Nominations

are you passionate about advancing the medical interpreting profession?
  SPRING 2022 | ISSUE 5  



We are pleased to announce the winners for the 60-hour Medical Interpreter Training Course! We received close to 200 applications and an overwhelming amount of support and gratitude for making this scholarship possible. In partnership with MiTiO, 25 scholarships for the 60 hours Medical Interpreting Certificate Course were awarded; 10 scholarships for the Hub-CMI and 15 for the CMI credentials. More than ever, medical interpreting has become essential in closing the health care disparities gap and critical to providing quality care. We are proud to support the medical interpreter community as they pursue their goals and aspirations.

CMI Candidates, Name and Language

Lily Wang Batta, Mandarin
Michelle Leva, Spanish
Jelena Skopinceva, Russian
Jieyu Shen, Mandarin
Qianying Guan. Cantonese
Eliana Caballero, Spanish
Ariel Díaz de Leon, Spanish
Angelina E Riz, Spanish
Sergio Velasco, Spanish
Zhiqiang Cheng, Mandarin
Sissy Cardenas, Spanish
Claudia Carolina Burgos Zuniga, Spanish
Benjamin Nathan Serio, Spanish
Hsiao Fang Liang, Mandarin
Catherine Bedeski, Spanish

HUB-CMI Candidates,Name and Language

Rupa Shrestha, Nepali
Sher Salim Khan, Hindi
Samir Kalini, Arabic
Sandra Abdelnour, Arabic
Merajuddin Massod, Farsi
Bivechana Gautam, Nepali
Chahira Issolah, French
Oleksandra Guirlina, Ukrainian
Nageh Soliman, Arabic
Viviane Mai Vang Yang, Hmong

CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL award recipients!!

  SPRING 2022 | ISSUE 5  

Skills Intertwined: The Intersection of Interpreting in Medical and Education Settings - Part I

"Can you interpret for a meeting this afternoon," as a newly hired interpreter in the largest and most diverse school district in my state, I was hesitant to decline this request. On the one hand, the interpreting requests were piling up, along with the volume of translations that needed to be ready for printing and publishing the next day. On the other hand, as the only official Spanish interpreter for over 130 schools, I understood the urgency of this request and the importance of supporting language access and family engagement through communication. "Sure! Can you tell me what the meeting is about?" I learned to ask this question after working for over a decade as a medical interpreter/social worker/translator for a large children's hospital. I was confident that my medical terminology and my skills as a medical interpreter would transfer easily to my work as a school interpreter.

"It's a special education meeting for a child with Williams Syndrome," said the school Principal. I thought, "this can't be that hard," after all, while working at the hospital I interpreted numerous times for our genetic counselors and worked directly with families with rare genetic neurodevelopmental disorders such as Williams Syndrome. I pictured myself accessing vocabulary files in my brain with terms such as "failure to thrive," "gross and fine motor skills," "chromosome deletion," and "congenital heart defect." In my mind, I was ready. The special education meeting started smoothly and I was able to keep up, feeling proud of how I was weaving my skills as a medical and educational interpreter. Suddenly, the conversation shifted to the child's working memory abilities, phonics instruction, rapid word object associations and phonological skills. Suddenly, I had a parent and six teachers staring and waiting for me to come up with something or anything! Suddenly, I realized how unprepared I really was. The techniques of interpreting can certainly transfer from health to education. However, we must also appreciate the uniqueness of the vocabulary, goals and approaches of the education setting and its focus on strengthening home-school connections. This was a humbling experience indeed, but one that fueled me to start creating and promoting professional development opportunities for interpreters like me with a desire and interest in intertwining skills and approaches.

Ana Soler Ana Soler, Chairperson of the National
Association of Educational Translators and
Interpreters of Spoken Languages (NAETISL)
  SPRING 2022 | ISSUE 5  

Upcoming Events

If you are attending please stop by our booth and say Hi

We hope you will join us May 13th-14th, 2022 in beautiful San Jose, CA for CHIA's 22nd Annual Educational Conference. This years theme; "Give Your Skills a Booster". Stop by our booth in the exhibitors hall and pick up some swag.

Don't forget to attend as we present "Advocacy for Health Equity: A Contemporary Approach". Co-presenter; our Chair, Xiomara Armas, CMI-Spanish, BBA & our Secretary, Gustavo Negrete, CMI-Spanish

We are honored not only to be Bronze Sponsors of the 2022 Paving the Way Conference, organized by Massachusetts Medical Interpreter Training, but absolutely thrilled that our very own Industry Representative, Dr. Ying Shi will be presenting - "Welcome to the National Board's Medical Interpreter Credentials Programs". Stop by our virtual booth and say hello.

As with other conferences, we hope you can join us at NAJIT's 43rd Annual Conference titled; "Navigating the Waters of Change".

This year, one of our esteemed directors will be presenting virtually on Saturday,
June 4th in the Main Conference Session - How to become a Certified / Credentialed Medical Interpreter
9:00 AM - 10:00 AM (EDT)

United We Grow
LEO's 5th International Virtual Conference
Location: Online
Date: June 23-24, 2022
Time: 4-6 PM EST / 1-3 PM PST on Thursday
10 AM-6:30 PM EST / 7 AM-3:30 PM PST on Friday

National Association of Educational Translators and Interpreters of Spoken Languages (NAETISL) is hosting their Second Annual Virtual Conference. What's new this year? A full three-day agenda with speakers joining us from Mexico, France, Spain, Peru and the United States, and a panel of bilingual/multilingual parents and caregivers sharing their experiences with interpreters and translators in education. We hope to see you there.

  SPRING 2022 | ISSUE 5  

Interpreters and Volunteers Needed

The Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) is the world's largest international pre-college science competition. Regeneron ISEF provides an annual forum for more than 1,800 students in grades 9 - 12 from nearly every state in the U.S. and more than 80 countries, regions and territories to showcase their talent on an international stage. Each year, millions of students worldwide compete in science fairs; winners go on to participate in more than 425 Societyaffiliated fairs from which the best win the opportunity to attend the Regeneron ISEF, to be held at the Georgia World Congress Center, May 8 - 13, 2022. These top young scientific minds will come together to showcase their talent on an international stage, be judged by doctoral-level scientists and compete for nearly $5 million in prizes and scholarships.
  • Gain personal satisfaction and inspiration by supporting motivated future scientists and engineers
  • Advance STEM education in your community
  • Earn community service or outreach credit from your business, school or institution
Approximately 1,000 judges are needed for 21 scientific disciplines. Judging will take place virtually from Wednesday, May 4 - Thursday, May 5, and in-person on Tuesday, May 10 , 2022. Judges must have a minimum of six years related professional experience beyond receiving a B.A., B.S., or Master's degree OR a Ph.D., M.D., or equivalent (D.O., Ed.D., D.D.S., D.V.M., etc.) OR is a current graduate student with more than four years of doctoral-level research experience or who is within one year of doctoral dissertation defense.
About 200 interpreters in over 25 languages are needed to work with students throughout the week in various ways. The greatest need for interpreters is during judging virtually from Wednesday, May 4 - Thursday, May 5, and inperson on Tuesday, May 10, 2022. On May 10, the day begins at 7:00 a.m. with a breakfast where interpreters and finalists meet to discuss their project and language needs for the day. Many of the students are fluent in English but would like interpreters just in case. There will be four-hour shifts throughout the day until about 4:00 p.m.
The greatest need for languages includes Spanish, Arabic, Russian and Mandarin. Other languages needed include Bahasa Malaysia, Cantonese, Czech, Filipino, Finnish, French, German, Gujarati, Hindi, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Kazakh, Korean, Mandarin, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Sinhala, Slovak, Thai, Turkish, Urdu and Vietnamese.
More than 500 general volunteers for a variety of activities are needed during the week, beginning Wednesday, May 4 - Friday, May 13. Virtual and in-person, including daytime, evening and weekend shifts are available for everyone ages 14-99!
On-site training provided.
We look forward to your support at Regeneron ISEF in Atlanta, either virtually or in-person.

For more information, email [email protected]

  SPRING 2022 | ISSUE 5  

Interesting Articles

Calls for interpreters to become legal requirement for NHS providers

Health watchdogs are calling for interpreters to be made a legal requirement for all healthcare settings after a survey exposed worrying gaps in the service.

As part of national research, Healthwatch Norfolk quizzed people with English as their second language about their experiences of accessing healthcare in the county.

Read more - https://www.edp24.co.uk/news/health/healthwatch-calls-for-interpreters-in-nhs-8778556

International Booker Juror Calls for Royalties for Translators

"Less than a week after the International Booker Prize jury released its 2022 longlist, the chair of that jury has called today (March 15) for publishers to pay translators royalties on the sales of books they translate. Frank Wynne is the first translator to chair the International Booker jury, and in a move sure to encourage those who champion literary translation and translators, the Booker Foundation has endorsed Wynne's position, taking it a step further."


A Framework for Language Access: Key Features of U.S. State and Local Language Access Laws and Policies

This report analyzes key elements of language access laws and policies across 40 states and localities. Although these laws and policies often take cues from federal guidance on language access, they also contain many unique and innovative elements necessary to ensure language access in the day-to-day functions of state and local governments. And while these mandates are rooted in their local contexts, they share common features that can provide a foundational framework for other jurisdictions interested in improving their service capacity and governance of language access.