An Inside Look at the Honours Bachelor of Interpretation Program (ASL – English)

[music] RHONDDA REYNOLDS: The Honours Bachelor of Interpretation, American Sign Language – English, is a four-year program of advanced studies in both American Sign Language and Interpretation. WAYNE NICHOLSON: Deaf people are like anybody else. They can attend all different kinds of functions and that’s what makes the job so unique as well.

RAY KISMAN: I’m always thrilled when something is accomplished. So when the Deaf person has access to something that they weren’t able to get access to before. When they’re able to get their loan for their home, it’s special to be a part of. WAYNE NICHOLSON: In terms of working with individuals,

Interpreters need to have the ability to understand these people; such as their languages and cultures, who they are; in addition to working to understand the overall context and the messages within the interaction. These skills require excellent competency in these two languages, which in turn conveys what these individuals bring to a dialogue.

This is crucial. Quick cognitive processing must also take place to convey accurate messages for these people. That is the fundamental skill. RHONDDA REYNOLDS: This can be a challenging program for some people because of the need for a strong foundation in both American Sign Language as well as English.

A need to have strong memory skills and memory recall skills; both visual memory, visual spatial memory and auditory memory; the ability to focus for long periods of time and the fact that there is no direct word– English word in American Sign Language sign correlation.

RAY KISMAN: What I benefitted from and what I brought forth with me from that experience was confidence. I find a lot of the interactions that I had in the program are applying to where I am today. So for example, there’s a lot of partnerships with the ROM,

Royal Ontario Museum and I was able to go there and work with individuals on a one-to-one basis. CHRIS KENOPIC: Whenever I see a new interpreter I’ve not met before, I always ask them where they graduated from. And when they say George Brown College, knowing that I participated in the development of the program,

And to see younger interpreters out and working in the field is just great. The fact that these interpreters have gone through such a credible interpreting program at George Brown College with faculty who have expertise in linguistics; are knowledgeable and use their extensive involvement within the

Deaf community to inform their teaching inspires confidence in me knowing that they are a graduate of this program. RHONDDA REYNOLDS: Being an interpreter underscores the role and the privilege that we have being part of the most intimate moments of a person’s life. [music] 57 00:02:37,758 –> 00:00:00,000 a

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