Over the years, a large number of people have acquired skills in selected foreign languages mainly French, German & Russian. Of late we are expanding our trade links with many other countries namely China, Japan and Israel. There is a large requirement of people with skills in these languages. Recently I had a requirement of getting a technical paper in Hebrew (The language of Israel) translated in English. I had a harrowing experience to locate a qualified person to do the job. And once the person was located, he had to be paid Rs 30,000/- for a 30 page document! The same is the case with other two languages I have mentioned above. I have come to know that translation charges for Japanese have gone up to Rs 2000/- per page for certain types of jobs. The rate for good interpreters in all these languages is as high as Rs 4000/- per hour.
Job Overview: Translator’s job involves translating the written material which can be in the form of general correspondence, instructions, technical data, catalogues, political speeches or even books. The interpreter’s job on the other hand is bit more difficult and requires much thorough knowledge of the language.
Work Area : The scope of the work area is wide. It could be in hotels and the tourism industry. It could be in mass communication and entertainment. It could be with commerce, business and industrial houses. Embassies and diplomatic missions. In addition, it offers an easy passport to work abroad. Then there are many opportunities for private tuitions where rates of Rs. 300-500 per hour are fairly common.
Types of Courses: There are basically three types of courses namely, Certificate Course, Diploma course and a degree course. The eligibility criterion for Certificate and Degree courses is 10+2. However, in most of the places, eligibility for Diploma course is the Certificate Course in that language.
No Correspondence Course: Learning a foreign language is one thing and using it to earn money is another. To earn a livelihood through a foreign language, one has to be constantly in touch with the use of language by reading newspapers, magazines and books. In addition, one has to be in touch with other people who can speak that language to improve speaking skills, understand and appreciate the fines aspects of the language which comes only through speaking and conversation. Such courses should therefore never be done through correspondence.
Where to Study : Given below is a comprehensive list of places where one can undergo courses in these languages. The list is prepared language-wise and is self explanatory.
Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Marathwada 1 year Diploma in Chinese
University, Aurangabad 431004
Punjabi University, Patiala 147001 Certificate & Diploma in Chinese
Utkal University, 2 years Diploma in Chinese
PO Vani Vihar, Bhubneshwar 751004
University of Delhi, 1 year Certificate in Chinese
Delhi 110007
University of Hyderabad, 1 year Diploma in Chinese
PO Central University,
Hyderabad 500046
University of Lucknow, Certificate & Diploma in Chinese
Badshah Bagh Lucknow 226007
Banares Hindu University, 2 year Diploma in Chinese
Varanasi 220005 1 year Certificate in Japanese
School of Languages, BA in Chinese, Japanese
Jawaharlal Nehru University,
New Delhi 110067
Tilka Manjhi Bhagalpur University, BA in Chinese, Japanese
Bhagalpur 812007
University of Mumbai, BA in Chinese, Japanese
MG Road, Fort Mumbai 400032
Vishva Bharati, Certificate & Diploma in
Shantiniketan 731235 Chinese, Japanese
University of Madras, 2 years Diploma in Japanese
Centenary Building Chepauk,
Chennai 600 005
University of Pune, Ganeskhind Certificate & Diploma in Japanese
University of Calcutta, BA in Hebrew
Senate House, College Street,
Kolkata 700073
University of Calicut, BA in Hebrew
Mallapuram, Kozhikode 673635
In addition, there are various cultural/counselor organizations that offer various language courses e.g. the following 3 institutes offer various courses in Japanese language:
l J Somaiya Center of Buddhist Studies, 2nd Floor, SIMSR Building, Vidyavihar, Ghatkopar, Mumbai 400077
l Indo-Japanese Association, 7th Floor, Oricon House, 12-K Dubash Marg, Mumbai 400023
l Bhartiya Vidya Bhavan, Jawaharlal Nehru Academy of Languages, Kasturba Gandhi Marg, New Delhi 110001
India is on its way to become a ‘developed nation’ and an economic power. It is going to happen because of its increasing trade-links with the most rapidly advancing nations. Thus there is great scope for translators and interpreters in these languages. The time is now ripe to get into the field.