Kristy Brown Lust, 2014

Kristy Brown Lust photoCurrent city: Madison, WI

Concentration: French to English translation

Now I’m: an in-house translator for a translation agency

I came to Translation & Interpreting Studies because:
I studied French in undergrad because I loved the language, but didn’t know exactly how I would use it in my career. I worked for a French-owned company after graduation and they asked me to translate their company magazine. I enjoyed it so much that I decided to go back to school part time to get my master’s degree in translation. After nearly 15 years of experience working in marketing and corporate communications, this career change is giving me the opportunity to combine so many of the things I love—translation, marketing, writing, travel and more.

What career advice do you have for current or potential TIS students?
I recently attended a conference for translators working in the value-added segment of the market—in other words, for companies who value the superior writing skills and critical thinking that only a human can provide. Here are a few ideas I picked up there: If you want to be a translator, getting work experience in another field first can be an excellent way to develop a specialization. Personal experience and hobbies are also an excellent source of specialized knowledge. Hone your target-language writing skills. Read widely in your target language, especially on topics that you want to specialize in.