2017 Interpreter Workshops

Arraignment to Sentencing: A Walk Through A Criminal Trial
with Erica Allen and Jamie Rix
Saturday, March 18, 2017 9:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.

Are you interested in interpreting in a criminal justice setting? Come see the inside of a courtroom and learn about the people and processes involved!

This is a very interactive workshop with a tour of a Kent County courtroom and their holding cells. It is a basic introduction to legal terminology and process related to criminal proceedings. The workshop will cover arraignment to sentencing. You will be introduced to who’s who and what’s what in a courtroom, the movement of a person who is in custody within the court building, and timing of a criminal case, and the Miranda Warning. You will have hands-on practice interpreting the Miranda Warning, and learn about interpreting in the criminal process, teaming, and using CDIs. There will also be a discussion about the CPC and NCSC code of ethics. This is a workshop you do not want to miss!

Please note: this workshop will be held at the Kent County Courthouse 180 Ottawa Ave. N.W. Grand Rapids, MI 49503

This workshop is geared toward interpreters and ITP students wanting an introduction to the criminal justice process and tour of a courtroom. Approved for 0.6 Professional Studies and 0.6 Legal RID/BEI CEUs.


Jamie Rix is a nationally certified sign language interpreter with more than 20 years of professional interpreting experience. She presents workshops about such topics as interpreter certification/testing, best practices for working with Deaf and hard of hearing students, self-assessment techniques, and legal interpreting. Jamie graduated from Western Michigan University (WMU) with a BA in Sociology with an emphasis in Social Psychology, minoring in Criminal Justice. She also completed courses in the Legal Interpreter Training Program (LITP) through the University of Northern Colorado. This past summer she participated in the first ever NCIEC teaching slam in Boston, Massachusetts where she presented on the topics of privilege and language use. Currently she is completing her masters of arts in Communications at WMU. Jamie teaches American Sign Language at WMU and works as a freelance interpreter.

Erica Allen is a nationally certified interpreter with 17 years of professional experience. She holds the Certificate of Interpretation (CI), the Certificate of Transliteration (CT), and the National Interpreter Certification: Master (NIC: Master). She also holds the Certificate of (SC: L) Specialist Certificate Legal and Michigan Endorsements (Legal, Medical & Mental Health). She has completed courses in the Legal Interpreter Training Program (LITP) through the University of Northern Colorado. Her interpreting experience includes settings such as government (local, state and federal), education, medical, mental health, video relay, and legal/court (district, circuit, and federal). Erica currently works as a freelance interpreter in southwest Michigan.

DeafBlind 101
with Jill Gaus
Saturday, April 1, 2017 9:00 a.m.- 6:00 p.m.

Join us and gain the essentials of Interpreting for DeafBlind individuals. Through hands on activities, role playing, lectures and group work, participants will practice the skills needed to work with DeafBlind consumers and learn about the various modes of communication they use.

This workshop is geared toward Deaf, Sign Language Interpreters and ITP Students.


Jill Gaus: has Ushers Syndrome and had been a member of the DODDBHH Advisory since July 2003-2011. Rejoined in 2015 and Governor-Appointed Chair, Jill is active on local, state and national level with DeafBlind. She is the Director of Michigan DBW (DeafBlind Workshop), which is held at the DeSales Conference Center in Brooklyn, MI. each year. Jill is a Co-founder, past President and current Treasurer of SHI-M=DB (Self-Help for Independence in Michigan: Equalizing the DeafBlind Community). She currently works also as a consultant for DB Central, MI. Services for Children and Youths who are DeafBlind. She has been a member of the Board of Directors of American Association of the Deaf-Blind since 2003 and completed the presidency in 2013. Jill has been involved in many committees for AADB, as the chair of Fundraising, as member of both the Finance and Ad-Hoc committees. Jill is also serving as a member of the NTFDBI, National Task Force on DeafBlind Interpreting. Jill has also chaired the Helen Keller National Center Advisory Board. Other accomplishments for Jill include being the Coordinator/Facilitator of the first ever DeafBlind Transition Camp (DBTC) for DeafBlind teenagers, that was held at Michigan State University. She is a volunteer nurse for several different groups including the MI. Youth Leadership Forum, many of the Deaf Children programs at the Holley Family Village, the Michigan DBW, and DBTC. Jill is also an instructor at Lansing Community College teaching ITP (Interpreter Training Program) students, nursing students, and EMT staff & students, about working with DeafBlind.

CEUs are currently being processed.