Postcards from Academia

  • July 30, 2013

Hello all!

It’s Rae, writing from the hallowed halls of academia. I’ve gone back to school to improve my interpreting skills at the University of Northern Colorado. I graduated from another Interpreter Training Program (ITP) in 2006 with an Associates Degree, but I’m going back for a Bachelor’s.

red brick residential hall building with 4 stories, blue sky in background and green grass on strip near blacktop of parking lot


I recognize a lot of the landmarks from my last trip here. So far, most of the books and videos are the same and some of the assignments and activities are too. They have different faces, but so many of the students from the ITP of the past are here too. The compulsive note taker, the giggler, and the off point commentator are all here. One of my fellow students from the past is there too, leading one of the classes!

It’s not all old hat. In the past, I was usually the only student in class using a laptop or a digital recorder during lectures. That’s changed. The courses I’m enrolled in now are predominantly online, but meet once a year on campus for live classroom activities. We all live and die by our internet connection and typing speed. Attending class online took some getting used to; locating the materials needed for each class in the various files, tabs and content areas resembles an Easter egg hunt. In this case you’re not so much happy to find one as you are exasperatedly relieved before you start your search for the next egg. Technology has changed over time and so have I. It was a strange feeling to realize that I understood my ASL teachers, for instance. I hadn’t realized that after seven years in the field, I still expected to struggle. The new struggle is in understanding how activities, assignments and projects all work in concert to inform my work. We’ve been given puzzle pieces as a reminder of the complicated nature of the program. For now, I can only trust the program and get my work done on time.

Wish me luck as I take on ASL 8 and Linguistics over the Fall semester!

Your friend,


Photo by Centerbrook

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