Women in Localization
Women in Localization (W.L.) is certified as a 501 (c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit. Its mission is to foster a global community for the advancement of women and the localization industry through networking, education, career advancement, mentoring and recognition for women’s accomplishments. Founded in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2008, W.L. is supported by thousands of women and men across the globe and local chapters who support members locally.
This was a second semester with Women in Localization, MIIS Chapter. In 2021, when some of my classmates and I took the challenge of becoming the second generation to manage the chapter at our Alma Mater, we didn’t know all the amazing events that we would be able to put in place.
We knew that as members of one of the most renown localization organizations in the world, we were facing with the opportunity to create new experiences and a platform of learning and nurturing the advancement of women in our industry. But we also knew, that with a great power comes great responsibility (and yes, I am quoting Spiderman). Keep in mind that we were only the second generation of the Chapter at MIIS, so we were still learning how to implement best practices and transition from a pandemic world into the “New Normal.”
The first major challenge was moving half of our events from the comfort place of Zoom and thinking about in person events in a post-pandemic world. That wasn’t as easy as we expected but it was extremely rewarding to be able to connect with all the localization enthusiast and some alumni and professors in person.
At the beginning of our 4th semester, we were still not sure about throwing an in-person event with such little data about the most recent wave of the pandemic. For that reason, we decided to wait a bit and prepare an online event that we called “Stand out from the crowd” (that you can watch if you become a member of Women in Localization!) where we had a stellar panel which included Edith Bendermacher (Head of Globalization Strategy, Localization Operations at NetApp), Bryce Craft (Director of Employer Relations at MIIS), Veronika Gonzalez (Recruiter for the Translation Industry), and Xingchen Hu (Globalization Manager at OKCoin), In February 17th, and overall success where we spoke about the interesting topic of how to get hired in the localization industry with our experts.
After the success of this event and knowing that the wave was waning down. We got prepare for an in-person event, while having most of the WL members in a remote setting. On March 11th we were able to throw our first Happy Hour of the semester in a fun event, surrounded by pizza and snacks, that brough together localization enthusiasts, MIIS students, Alumni and even the famous author and professor Tucker Johnson.
Among other things that the second generation of WL MIIS Chapter had to do, was to understand that with graduation our time in the Chapter was also getting close to end. After interviewing different candidates, we ended up with our new leadership that will be third generation of Women in Localization at MIIS Chapter, I am hopefully for the next generation, and I will always treasure having being part of this amazing organization while I was finishing my master’s degree at MIIS, my Alma Mater.
A NEW CHAPTER – LANDING MY DREAM INTERNSHIP
The main goal of coming to MIIS, was to learn from the best and acquiring the knowledge and skills to take my career to the next level. I wasn’t sure what “next level” really mean at that time, but the opportunity came to me when I was less expecting it…
In my first semester at MIIS I did a list of the top 5 companies where some of the best professionals in our industry were at. One of these dream companies was Deluxe Entertainment Inc.
On December of 2021, I saw a post where Deluxe was looking for their first intern for their Localization division in The United States, and with excitement I applied to it. Two months after, when I almost forgot about applying to the position, thinking that I was not being considered, I got that email from the recruiter telling me to give them my availability for an interview with four people that I did not know yet, but all had very important titles within the organization. My first though was – was the interview with the four of them at the same time? I could feel my heart racing, and my impostor syndrome arising.
However, after panicking, recollecting myself, studying, and thinking about everything that I learned at my previous jobs in the industry as a translator, interpreter, and localization professional, I calmed down, and remembered that the only thing that I could do was to be myself.
After that interview, I realized that I completely forgot about my nerves while I was talking to them. Even in the distance of a Zoom call, they made me felt welcomed since that moment, although I wasn’t a Deluxe employee just yet.
Deluxe Media Inc., formerly Deluxe Entertainment Services Inc. (or simply Deluxe) is an American media company, whose clients include motion picture groups, television studios, digital content providers, and advertising agencies. The company has been recognized with ten Academy Awards for scientific and technical achievement. Founded in 1915 by producer William Fox, Deluxe’s headquarters are in Los Angeles and New York, with operations in 25 media markets worldwide.
After all, I got my dream internship just 3 months away from graduation. Deluxe took me on board and showed me day after day the amazing organization that they have, the systems that they use, the clients that they work for, the files that they work on, the workflows, and all the different initiatives and projects that are in place to deliver a fully localized product. They worked with my schedule and tailored my internship where I had the opportunity to get to know each division and met so many amazing localization professionals daily.
While at the internship, I realized that each of the Deluxe employees were not only excellent professionals, but also that they were in the entertainment industry because they had passion for it. That realization, even though that I was drowning in the workload of what entails to be a master’s degree Candidate for the TLM program at MIIS, made me felt energized.
However, the cherry on top, was when I got invited to attend our Internship Check In, at their Ontario and Hollywood Way offices. At that time, I was in the middle of classes, but I KNEW that I couldn’t throw away such an opportunity. So, I said yes, packed a small bag, sent an email to my professors about not being able to attend classes, and a few weeks after I was into a plane heading to Burbank, the capital of entertainment.
I honestly did not know what I was expecting, I mean, I knew that it would be great, but the experience itself was beyond my expectations. I learned so much that day, not only about their cinema division, but also, I got to know the installations and they gave me a personal tour. But the best part was when I arrived at the Hollywood Way office, and I was able to meet most of the people that I met online, in person. Once again, they went an extra mile to make me feel welcome. It was a short visit, but after jumping on the plane back to Monterey, I left with the feeling that even though that after graduation most of us don’t know what’s next, whatever is next would be also amazing because the world is our oyster.
Overall, I can truly say that the internship with Deluxe reinforced my love for the entertainment and localization industry in a way that I never felt before.
Now I know that next level means being able to integrate my knowledge of localization into the industry that I always wanted to belong and fulfilling a dream long overdue. I cannot thank Deluxe Entertainment enough for seeing my potential and giving me the opportunity to learn the day to day of their end-to-end global localization operations.
Without a doubt, I can say that my Practicum was incredible, and I would not change a thing, working with two international organizations such as Women in Localization and Deluxe Entertainment, made me feel closer to the industry, the importance of evangelization and the importance of continuous learning. Women in Localization gave me the courage to evangelize localization and make other women feel that there is a place for us in this industry, and Deluxe showed me what global truly means and how different is when you work in a place where everyone feels passion for what they do.
Finally, I am grateful to my Alma Matter, MIIS, for giving me the opportunity of becoming part of these two amazing organizations through the Translation and Localization Management practicum.
And for those who are reading this with the aim to learn more about localization or what it means to have an internship with these two companies, remember that we all start somewhere, if you do not know where to start, please feel free to reach out to me or other localization professionals, there was a time where we also did not know where to begin.