The Parthenon in Centennial Park in Nashville is a full-scale replica of the original Parthenon in Athens and a major tourist and cultural attraction for the city. Visitors can listen to an audio tour of the Parthenon, and they wanted to make it available in other languages to make it more accessible. TLC is currently translating the audio tour script into Spanish and Arabic. Then, TLC Training Specialist Richard Ponce de Leon and Medical Interpreting Trainer Nadia Crank will provide the voiceovers for recording the script. The Parthenon is visited by more than 300,000 people a year from across Tennessee and the United States.
We are so excited to welcome three new Project Managers to our Interpretation and Translation Department. ITS Project Managers serve as the point of contact external clients for interpretation and/or translation projects.
Eileen Bernstein has served as a translator with TLC since 2020. She has a bachelor’s degree in Spanish from the University of New Hampshire and a master’s degree in political science from George Washington University.
Mahasweta Panigrahy has most recently worked as an early learning project coordinator at First Presbyterian Preschool in Franklin. Mahasweta holds degrees from Berhampur (India) University and the University of the Cumberlands.
Adrian McDaniel is a former program manager for International Scholarship and Tuition Services Inc. Adrian holds a bachelor’s degree in international relations with minors in French and Spanish from Middle Tennessee State University; as well as a master’s in international business from Southern New Hampshire University.
Welcome, Eileen, Mahasweta and Adrian!
TLC has been translating Covid-19-related parent modules for online and at-home student support for the IRIS Center at Vanderbilt University. The latest project was three online classroom behavior management modules for teachers of a combined word count of almost 80k.
Supported by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs and located at Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College, the IRIS Center develops and disseminates free, engaging online resources about evidence-based instructional and behavioral practices to support the education of all students, particularly struggling learners and those with disabilities. IRIS resources have been used in teacher preparation programs by thousands of educators throughout the United States and around the world.
TLC has completed more than 40 translation projects in 2021 for Nashville-based MP&F Strategic Communications for its client, Job Corps. Job Corps is a U.S. Department of Labor program that offers free education and vocational training to young people across the United States.
TLC has translated recruitment materials for Job Corps including flyers, info sheets, and social media posts into Spanish, Arabic, Somali, Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese French and Russian. TLC translators also completed translations of a special recruitment campaign in Puerto Rico into Puerto Rican Spanish, and most recently has been translating materials into Dari and Pashto in preparation for recruiting refugees from Afghanistan.
Richard Ponce de Leon from TLC participated in the panel discussion “Workforce Inclusion Impacting Workplace Safety” at the 2021 Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Educational Conference held Nov. 2 in Murfreesboro. Richard addressed how language barriers can impact workplace safety. Attendees included TN employers, insurance adjusters, self-insurers, third party administrators, safety and human resource managers, plaintiff and defense attorneys, health care providers, mediators, nurse case managers, and medical and vocational rehabilitation providers.
TLC is dedicate to facilitating intercultural communication, and as workforce demographics evolve, overcoming language barriers reduces liability risks associated with workplace injury and death.
We are happy to announce that Richard Ponce de Leon will be Tennessee Language Center’s new Interpretation and Translation Training Specialist, effective Nov. 1, 2021. Richard was previously a Project Manager for TLC’s Interpretation & Translation Services.
As Interpretation and Translation Training Specialist, Richard will design curriculum, ensure quality instruction, and facilitate, supervise, and administer training workshops for interpreters. More specifically, he will work with our medical and court interpretation certification programs and work with the American Association of Interpreters and Translators in Education as they develop a certification program for educational interpreters.
TLC participated in the annual Celebrate Nashville Cultural Festival in Nashville. The event drew around 40,000 people from the Middle Tennessee area, and TLC held several short language class demos throughout the day as well as talking to people interested in classes and language services.
Cheekwood Botanical Gardens in partnerships with the Japanese Consulate General in Nashville, hosted a day of Japanese cultural activities and a moon viewing on Sept. 19. TLC Japanese Teachers Naoko Takeda and Tomi Kowamura taught a Japanese calligraphy class, and TLC Executive Director Janice Rodriguez and World Languages Coordinator Jack Willey set up and manned an information table throughout the event to promote our Japanese and other World Language classes.
TLC’s ESL to Go program has received a $93,000 grant from the Tennessee Office for Refugees through Catholic Charities. ESL to Go offers free English as a Second Language classes to approved asylees, refugees, and people with Special Immigrant Visas (SIVs) that have been in the U.S. five years or less.
Classes are offered online, and ESL to Go also has a classroom on wheels that can travel to the apartment complexes where refugees live, eliminating the need for transportation to and from class. This grant will cover the cost for classes for around 170 students.
Prior to the pandemic, the Tennessee Language Center’s Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) teacher certification course offered 150 hours of instruction, far beyond the standard 100 hours, and included a 30-hour, in-person teaching practicum. Graduates who completed the program had an advantage obtaining jobs in the field because of this teaching experience. Because of the in-person practicum, the certification training had always been limited to students in the Middle Tennessee area.
This year, TLC made the decision to pilot a completely virtual TESL certification program. On Sept. 11, the first cohort of graduates from the all online TESL certification program graduated. This class is now available to anyone in Tennessee that wishes to get certified to teach English as a Second Language.
TN Language Center
The Tennessee Language Center (formerly TFLI), an agency of the University of Tennessee’s Institute for Public Service established in 1986, is dedicated to responsive service of the public sector, the business community and private citizens in realizing their intercultural communication goals.