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PHD Translation, Saudi Arabian

I am a 28-year-old Saudi Arabian man who has dedicated his life to communication in English and I have a special love for translation. I love the idea of a global language, and for better or for worse, history has chosen English. Translating English into Arabic is something that I labor to make a fine art. I am especially interested in doing research in the areas of Translation Studies particularly the translation of poetry and other creative writing including prose, novels and plays.

 After completing your program, my short term goal is to become an assistant Professor of Translation at XXXX University-Saudi Arabia. My long term goal is to serve as a distinguished scholar in translation studies, especially with respect to related areas of linguistics. I look forward to decades of research in translation and interpretation, laboring to create new, more effective strategies and techniques in translation from English to Arabic and vice versa.  I hope to one day be regarded as a leading figure in Saudi Arabia with respect to many aspects of Arabic/English communication.

 While studying towards the BA, I worked part time job for the ELS language Centers in Riyadh-Saudi Arabia for two years as a student coordinator and adviser. This position helped me to vastly improve my own English as a result of my constant association with the teachers, all of whom were either American or British. I particularly appreciated the opportunity to translate for students whose English were very weak. This was also a good environment for exploring ideas, strategies and solutions to many problems in translation and interpretation that are common in Saudi Arabia, as well as become much more conscious of cultural issues and the way that they related to translation. After receiving my BA in Translation in 2008 I worked for XXXX University in the Rector’s Office as a translator. This position also helped me to rapidly advance my appreciation for the complexity of linguistic and cultural differences between Arabic and English speakers. I also had a lot of opportunity to practice written translation from English into Arabic and vice versa.

 In 2011, I received the MA in Arabic/English Translation and Interpreting from University of Durham. I was then appointed by XXXX University (Saudi Arabia) as a lecturer in English Language as well as a counselor for the Vice Rector’s Office for Academic and Educational Affairs. Being appointed a lecturer in English Language has given me confidence and helped inspire me to pursue my studies further.

 I feel strongly that the greatest contribution that I might be able to make to society would be to establish a distinguished translation studies center which would provide introductory as well as advanced courses in translation. I see my long term goal as serving as a guide for translators in Saudi Arabia. I especially look forward to translating a number of English books into Arabic which will be helpful for fostering intercultural communication between speakers of English and Arabic.

 I lived in the UK for a-year-and-a-half, culminating in my MA Degree. This of course was the most professionally formative experience that I have had thus far as a language professional. I began with Intensive English courses for 3 months in Basil Paterson College in Edinburgh. Then I moved to Durham. First, I took an English course for academic purposes for 3 months in the University of Durham then I started my Master’s studies and finished in one year. I visited the USA for 2 weeks on behalf of the language centre where I worked. We visited 6 States including New York, Ohio, North Carolina, Georgia, Florida and Texas, in order to closely observe ESL centers. We also went on similar discovery missions to visit ESL centres in France, Lebanon, United Arab Emirates, Jordan and Bahrain.

 I have always gravitated towards the Liberal Arts and especially languages and translation. I seem to be drawn to path of the language professional as a result of a very early identification with words, and began learning English while still a small child as well. Thus, throughout the course of my life thus far, my capacity in English tended to serve as a measure of self worth. And this has inspired me to work very hard, to the point where I now hope to enter a doctoral program to study towards the terminal degree in my field.  Saudis have a tendency towards isolationism and self-absorption, and are often noted to be somewhat rigid and inflexible, especially with respect to educational reform, and this is true. I hope to labor to open up Saudi Arabia more to the world through greater levels of more effective preparation in our global language. My experience thus far has helped me to better appreciate the complexity of many of the problems in English language learning, and the special or peculiar way that they tend to manifest themselves in the Saudi classroom.

 I have learned a great deal from the teachers with whom I have worked, sharing their experiences. I made it a point to spend as much time as I could with each teacher, especially the foreigners, so as to learn from their unique experiences in the Saudi classroom. Dealing directly with students and their issues helped to inspire me to pursue graduate studies.

 The strongest part of my application is probably my professional employment trajectory, since I was first a student coordinator, then translator, and finally a lecturer in English, covering a variety of areas including grammar. I seek admission to a rigorous program in translation such as yours and look forward to a full immersion in theory and fundamentals. I am convinced that, with your program as a springboard, that I will have the preparation that I need for a lifetime of valuable contributions to the study of translation in the KSA.

 I especially enjoy strategies and solutions to English language learning—most particularly as this involves tools for Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL).  The greatest contribution that I might be able to make to society would be to facilitate the acquisition of English as an international language by designing everything from new methodologies and techniques to the laboratories where they would be put into practice. I also plan to be very involved in initiatives to stimulate further investment on the part of the government of Saudi Arabia in the area of Translation as well as English Education. I am a dedicated and very hard worker, which is why, for example, I helped to build a fence to protect wild plants that are threatened with extinction in my region where I live.

 I thank you for considering my application to your distinguished program.

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