Newsletter Policy About Services and Products
Cross-Cultural Communications does not accept paid advertisements. Our focus is not on commercial products but practical resources. If you have news that may be of interest to our audience, please send it to INTERSECT.

Video of the Month: Putin as Interpreter

Putin can interpret?
Don’t laugh. Here’s the story. At a journalists’ forum in St Petersburg, after a spontaneous audience question, Russian President Vladimir Putin jumped in to interpret the answer from a German former Member of Parliament (even though a simultaneous interpreter was on the job).
Putin interpreted for 1.5 minutes. A complete surprise. There was no way he could have prepared. He wowed the audience. He enchanted the German speaker.
Putin -- the interpreter?
A generation ago I spoke fluent German and had by then studied 2.5 years of Russian. I can’t vouch for Putin’s accuracy but here’s my take:
  • Putin speaks astounding German.
  • His interpreting was fluent and competent.
  • His accuracy didn’t seem perfect but adequate.
  • For an amateur, he had incredible poise, professionalism and an ability to interpret tone, intent and meaning.
  • His delivery was mostly (not always) smooth.
  • And wow, after just 1.5 minutes, did he look tired.
If Putin ever gets weary of politics, he just might find a second career as an interpreter.
P.S. to German>Russian interpreters—what do you think?

Which Language Companies Scored Big on "the List"?

Inc’s 5,000 list is a big deal. To score a place on it, your company must be one of the fasted growing private companies in the U.S. over three years.
So how many language companies aced the list? Answer: a dozen. Who topped them? Stratus Video.
Stratus trounced its competition with its video interpreting services and grew more than 2,000 percent from 2013 to 2016 (from $1.5 million to $33.5 million).
An article in Slator highlights the 12 LSPs that made the list. Familiar names pop up, such as Propio Language Services (168% revenue growth, with $7.2 million in 2016); Cyracom (107% growth, $127.9 million revenue); Interpreters Unlimited (65% and $29.3 million); and Certified Languages International (59% and 29.3 million). Dizzy growth …


Consider the “Life Course Game”
If you are either a cultural competence trainer or work in a healthcare organization concerned with cultural competence, here’s a special resource.
The Life Course Toolbox includes a board game on community health that plunges players into a storyline, from birth to death, that walks anyone through what it means to have—or not to have—health insurance, privilege and protective factors, among other social factors, and the long-term consequences of the cards we are dealt in life.
The game is a great way to show the social determinants of health while raising social awareness and triggering some emotional and heartfelt discussions about health and privilege.
Thanks to Dr. Tanya Funchess at Mississippi Department of Health for sharing a great resource!


Lost in Translation: An Illustrated Compendium of Untranslatable Words
Ella Frances Sander
Square Peg, 2015

It’s summer, when “Book of the Week” takes a lighter look at books related to language, culture, interpreting and translation.
This week’s book would make a great gift. It has 50 words with no real equivalent in English. Each comes with a definition, a comment about usage and a whimsical illustration.
Examples: the Finnish word for how long a reindeer can run without a rest, and a Japanese word about the way sunlight filters through leaves.
An easy beach read!


ATA Offers a Webinar on the Endocrine System
Medical interpreters take note. On September 12 at noon EDT, the American Translators Association offers a one-hour webinar on the endocrine system. It’s delivered by Tracy Young, CHI™, an RN and certified healthcare interpreter who is also an interpreter services coordinator and master trainer of interpreters.
This webinar looks at the endocrine system, related hormones, diseases, and disorders as well as allopathic and alternative treatments. The presentation includes learning and memory techniques. 

Registration was set to open August 16, 2017. Two days later it’s not quite up yet, so keep checking the ATA webinar site.

Killing the Language Companies Kindly

Now let’s look at another way of providing language services.
Washington state is performing a national experiment. For its Medicaid interpreter services, the state has eliminated language companies acting as “language service providers.” Instead, the state issued an RFP to have a single language company act as a vendor—a kind of broker with an online portal where interpreters book themselves for Medicaid appointments.
But the payments go from the state to the interpreters, and the vendor—currently CTS Language Link—acts only as a pass through. The middleman is largely cut out except to provide the online portal, which also issues automated invoices and bills the state.
Fine. Okay. And how has that worked?
A new report from the union of Washington state employees seems to say, “Pretty darn well,” despite hiccoughs. The results:
  • Increased demand for interpreters
  • Increase in interpreters’ hourly rate (from $21.50/hr in 2010 to $38.00/hr in 2017)
  • Lower cost to the state (from $57.50 per appointment in 2010 to $48.66 in 2017)
Problems? Yes. But the union seems happy.
Read the report. It’s riveting.



Enjoy the Last of Summer—and Remember the Early Bird Discount
As summer winds down, so does the early bird discount on our star program, The Community Interpreter® International. Early bird deadline: September 1.
Our fall session is October 6, 7, 13, 14 and 21 in Columbia, Maryland. Don’t miss the discount. Pay only $635 tuition, a savings of $40, and get:

  • Five days of training with superb, highly qualified trainers from four states.
  • The best textbook and workbook in the field.
  • Continental breakfast and snacks.
  • The most respected 40-hour certificate in the country for medical and community interpreting!

 (Note: there is a separate $70 language testing fee.)
This is the leading national program for medical and community interpreting, taught in its birthplace of Columbia. Thanks to this program, CCC has more than 260 licensed trainers in 35 U.S. states, DC, Guam and six other countries. Come find out why!


Going to TAHIT? Drop By. Say Hi!
CCC will have a table at the annual symposium of the Texas Association of Healthcare Interpreters and Translators. Are you going? Then please come visit!
You can chat, pick up our freebies, talk about training or check out our books.
Don’t miss our latest publication, the amazing intermediate textbook, Healthcare Interpreting with Heart and Mind by Suzanna Reiss-Koncar.
See you there!


Intersect on Vacation for Two Weeks
As we enter the final month of summer Intersect will celebrate with a two week vacation! The next issue will appear in your inbox on Friday, September 8.

We wish you and your loved ones a wonderful rest of the summer!



LOOK INSIDE all of our publications at: and go to Books and Products.





Cross-Cultural Communications
10015 Old Columbia Road
Suite B-215
Columbia, MD 21046

Phone: 410.312.5599

Email: Click Here


For more information about Cross-Cultural Communications, please visit us at:

For more information about The Community Interpreter®, please visit us at:

Marjory A. Bancroft 

Director & Founder
Cross-Cultural Communications, LLC

Copyright © 2017 Cross-Cultural Communications, LLC, All rights reserved.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list