The Eco-System of Language Profession
The ecosystem aims to depict the diverse and abundant opportunities that language students and language professionals can contribute to today’s world. Traditionally, language professionals see themselves as either translators or interpreters. And the pinnacle of achievement for them is probably working for an international organization such as the UN or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of their countries.
However, thanks to migration, government regulations, and globalization, language professionals now have many more ways to make their marks in the world.
When I first entered the industry almost 30 years ago, I often heard that the language industry was the last of the cottage industry. In my view, it is no longer the case. It is now an industry that produces close to $50 billion of economic value annually. While I saw the very positive evolution of the field, I realized when I became a Career Advisor 4 years ago at the Middlebury Institute of international studies at Monterey that young professionals still held very narrow views of where the opportunities are. And that is why I have made it my mission to get the word out.
This resource is intended to provide directional data for individuals exploring career options in the language field. Employers have great latitude in using job titles to reflect their organizational needs. The same job title may describe very different roles in organizations. The job duties of a, for example, Human Resources Manager in organization A may differ from organization B. As such, the content included under each job title is meant to be “descriptive” rather than “prescriptive.” I seek to “describe” based on what I have seen rather than trying to “define” what the job title should entail. I welcome feedback and contribution from employers to enhance this site. Please go to the “Contact” section of this website to send me an email. (Click on the graphic below to go to the full list of job titles.)