I had heard that the United Nations was one of the best places to work for a language professional, but didn’t really know what to expect for an internship. I was happy to discover that being an intern here is like being a member of the staff in that you are treated as an equal and given real assignments that will be published as United Nations documents. The translators and revisers are always willing to answer questions and share their own experiences, and are happy to take interns along to attend meetings of various UN bodies. They are also very encouraging when it comes to preparing to take the UN's language exams.
ETS intern summer 2014
A day in the life of an English Translation Service intern
I start my day by sitting down with a reviser to go over my translation. I love getting feedback so that my skills can continue to improve and develop. Then I get to work on a new translation. Typically, the documents I translate are country submissions for reports of the Secretary-General. At lunch, I eat in the park with other members of the Service. In the afternoon I attend a meeting of the Economic and Social Council to get a feel for prcis-writing. The English Translation Service is responsible for producing the official summary record of the meetings, so we are learning about that as well during our internship. Then I take a little break for an afternoon tea and grab a snack from the pantry, where there seems to be a never-ending supply of delicious treats brought in by the ETS translators. Then I go back to my translation, carefully checking the terminology until it is time to put it away for the day.