Interpreting and Translation Studies

Profession-Oriented and Research-Driven


The language industry is growing and diversifying quickly. More innovative and interdisciplinary jobs are created every day, and interpreters and translators are expected to be prepared to play these new roles that, in addition to core interpreting and translation competencies, require such diverse competencies as terminology management, post-editing, trans-creation, organizational managementand fusion interpreting.

The ITS curriculum at Wake Forest University has been designed with these expectations in mind. Our faculty’s expertise and market experience make our courses profession-oriented and research-driven. Our faculty combine ample experience as interpreters, translators, project managers, researchers, and management team leaders with the best teaching practices. 

We have an education partnership with SDL, which enables students to become SDL Trados Studio certified. Televic is our simultaneous interpreting equipment partner which allows us to have a bleeding edge technology in our lab.

Our professionally inclined students graduate as well-rounded professionals and go on to fill critical positions in the language industry in various contexts around the world.

Here are a couple of highlights of our graduates’professional assignments:

  • Carlos Fasola, PhD ( ITS ’16) was selected in a steep competition as the main simultaneous Spanish into English interpreter for Pope Francis visit to Panama in 2019. 
  • Nazanin Kaussari (ISH ’14), under the guidance of Dr. Olgierda Furmanek, was awarded a prestigious Boren Fellowship to study Farsi in Tajikistan for one year. Nazanin added Farsi as a B language to her working languages and has since worked as a linguist for multiple government contracts.


At the ITS program we teach what we research and we research what we teach. Our program is hands-on and practice is informed by research. Our students develop their research skills by means of dedicated course work and an Applied Research Project (ARP).

Faculty are active researchers and active practitioners, and our students are an essential part of a vibrant research environment. Students and faculty do research, publish and present together at regional and international venues.

Here are some examples of those accomplishments:

  • Peter Till (ITS ‘18) worked with Dr. Luis González on preterite and imperfect. This project stemmed from classwork in the Contrastive Grammar course and became a chapter that will appear in 2020 in a book published by Routledge. The title of the chapter is The preterite is like entering or leaving a room; the imperfect is like staying in the room.
  • Rong Cong (ITS ’19) and Chentao Peng  (ITS’19) presented papers at the 10th International Symposium for Young Researchers in Translation, Interpreting, Intercultural Studies and East Asian Studies in Barcelona, Spain (June 2019). The students worked with Dr. Olgierda Furmanek and their presentations, (Cong), Occupational Stress in Simultaneous Interpreting, and (Peng), The Interpreter’s Role in Chinese Premier-Meets-the-Press Conference, were their final projects in the Applied Interpreting Studies course.
  • Devin Gilbert (ITS ‘18) received the 2018 ATA Student Translator Award for his project on translating Ondjaki’s novel Os da minha rua from Angolan Portuguese into English, a fruit of his ARP project directed by Henryk Ślusarczyk SVD. This annual award recognizes outstanding student work that demonstrates promise for future research or publication.
  • Felicity Ratway (ITS ‘15), was awarded the 2015 Elizabeth Phillips Award for the Best Essay in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, an internal prize at Wake Forest University for her ARP directed by Dr. Diego A. Burgos.
  • Jordan Burner (ITS ‘14) and Dr. Diego A. Burgos presented their work at Katowice, Poland. The project explored a methodology for interpreters who have to deal with non-terminological expressions at a doctor’s office.

Several of our research-focused students graduate with such a sense of scientific inquiry that they end up pursuing a PhD in a number of fields including linguistics and translation and receive federal grants.

  • Tris Faulker (ITS ’14) has earned a prestigious National Science Foundation grant for her work with corpus linguistics as a doctoral student at Georgetown University, Washington, DC ( April 2020).

See more of our Graduates’ Careers 

Whatever your dreams are,
we will make our best professional and research effort
to help them come true!

Chinese-English ITS
Spanish-English ITS
Teaching of Interpreting
Intercultural Services in Healthcare