Army MOS 09L Interpreter and Translator

The nation’s defense depends on information from foreign language newspapers, magazines, radio broadcasts and other sources. Therefore, it’s very important that some members of the Army be able to read and understand the many languages of the world. Nowhere is this more important than in the Middle Eastern countries of Iraq and Afghanistan. The Army needs Soldiers who speak Middle-Eastern languages to serve as Interpreter/Translators and help with the rebuilding efforts.

The Interpreter/Translator is primarily responsible for conducting interpretation (oral) and preparing translations (written) between English and a foreign language, as well assisting in unit foreign language & cultural awareness familiarization training. 09L Soldiers specialize in a number of Middle-Eastern languages. Some of your duties as an Interpreter/Translator may include:

Prepare non-technical translations into the target language and performing sight translations from a target language into English

Perform oral interpretation

Assist military contracting officer with a local purchase to providing interpretation support at a military traffic control point

You may even be required to assist security personnel in screening the local population at military checkpoints

Other duties may include providing interpretation assistance for the Public Affairs Office (PAO) during local media events and translation of local newspapers or pamphlets

Requirements
Proficient in one or more of the following required target languages:

Pushtu/Pashto/Pachto
Pushtu-Afghan
Kurdish (currently closed)
Kurdish-Behdini (Kurmanji) (currently closed)
Kurdish-Sorani (currently closed)
Persian-Afghan (Dari)
Persian-Iranian (Farsi)

Training
Job training for an Interpreter/Translator requires you to demonstrate proficiency of English and a foreign language. You may be required to attend English language training at Ft. Jackson prior to attending Basic Combat Training (BCT). The length of your stay will depend on the level of your English language proficiency. Once you have successfully completed this, you must attend and successfully complete nine weeks of BCT where you will learn the basic skills necessary to become a Soldier. Immediately following BCT you will attend Advanced Individual Training (AIT). While at AIT, you will learn the specific skills required to successfully perform Interpreter support in the following areas:

Checkpoint Operations
Medical support
Locally Employed Personnel Screening
Training Host-Nation Forces
VIP Escort
Contract Negotiations
Cultural Awareness

Related Civilian Jobs
The skills you’ll learn as a Interpreter/Translator will help prepare you for a future with government agencies, embassies, universities and companies that conduct business overseas as a civilian translator or interpreter. There’s also potential for you to pursue a career as a government service executive. You’d be involved in determining and formulating policies, providing overall direction of federal, state, local or international government activities, as well as planning, directing and coordinating operational activities at higher management levels.

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