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Hernandez works with bilinguals through Interpreters Club

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The afternoons of senior Maggie Hernandez consisted of spending time at the local library with her father, except there was one problem: her father didn’t know English. Hernandez found herself in many situations where she either had to translate for her parents or fellow peers that were unable to speak English. Through Interpreters Club, she has managed to help those who are struggling, all while staying true to her principles.

“When I help people that don’t know how to speak English I feel like I’m doing something right, and I felt like Interpreters Club would be a right fit,” Hernandez said. “Seeing the difficulty and struggle that Spanish-speakers have when they don’t know how to fill out a certain paper or how to speak to a teacher, I think seeing that struggle really pushed me to help others.”

The Interpreters Club centers their attention on bilingual students that are interested in lending their voice to better serve their community. It offers a way for students to show off their roots, as well as indulging in new opportunities to appreciate their own heritage. Hernandez feels the club has broadened her understanding of different types of cultures, languages and races in this country.

“I have the privilege to be a part of it. And to know that I have the power to be the ‘bridge’ that connects two distant people makes me appreciate my background.”

The most rewarding aspect that she gets out of Interpreters Club is the fact she can help individuals understand one another so that they can communicate efficiently. She believes it’s crucial for there to be Interpreters because everyone deserves help regardless of their background. One of her core beliefs is that everyone should learn more than one language so that they could get a deeper insight into another culture.

In Interpreters Club, Hernandez has managed to gain community service hours, help others and increase her communication skills. She often goes to elementary schools during parent conferences to help teachers communicate with parents who aren’t fluent in English. As a result, she has also learned to understand various forms of slang that are used by only certain speakers.

“I’m more formal with my Spanish because other Spanish speakers have different words for different things. In Interpreters Club, you learn that and learn what they mean, so that you know how to use it,” Hernandez said. “It’s also important to help people because you can’t set aside someone who doesn’t know English. Interpreters Club is important because it’s the piece that connects the two.”

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Hernandez works with bilinguals through Interpreters Club