In an effort to engage the over 40 million people in America who speak Spanish at home (13% of the U.S. population), the Glacier Conservancy this year launched a project to translate a great portion of our website from English to Spanish. This important project was made possible by a capacity building grant from the National Park Foundation and a partnership with Stanford University’s Bill Lane Center for the American West.
Our purpose with this project is to share our mission to protect Glacier for future generations with a wider audience and make them feel welcome to experience the beauty of our park.
Photo: Tania Rojas
Tania is a student at Stanford University and helped translate the Glacier Conservancy’s website from English to Spanish during a summer internship program.
The project was translated by Tania Lisseth Rojas, a current sophomore at Stanford University, under the supervision of our very own Executive Director, Doug Mitchell, and with the technical assistance of Becca Wheeler, Glacier’s Creative Lead, Jeimi Woffinden, and the whole Bodhi and ZaneRay team, that put together the logistics of the brand new Spanish version of the website.
Tania was born and raised in Nicaragua and moved to Miami, FL five years ago.
“Growing up surrounded by family tales and the vastly diverse Spanish literature, I developed a deep love and appreciation for the Spanish language. Being able to translate Glacier’s information in my own words was a blessing and an experience I will always treasure.”
After graduating college, Tania plans to apply to medical school to one day become a pediatrician. “As a child, I had several health issues and used to visit my doctor frequently. Seeing the compassion with which my pediatrician would treat me and the way in which he really cared for my well-being inspired me to one day reciprocate such actions with many other kids.”
Being raised in the land of lakes and volcanoes, as Nicaragua is famously known, Tania developed an interest in mother nature and the way it shares its beauty and provides for us as humans. Tania recognizes that nature is like poetry, which is why she made sure that Spanish readers felt a connection with the descriptions about Glacier’s landscapes and wildlife. “I wanted them to paint a picture in their heads and imagine just for a moment that they weren’t in front of their computers anymore, rather they were walking along the Going-to-the-Sun Road, while feeling a kind breeze in their faces and contemplating the wildlife that welcomes them into their natural habitat. That was my favorite part of this internship, being able to use my words to transmit that same feeling and connection with Glacier regardless of language.”
As with any other new experience, this innovative project had its challenges. For Tania, one of them was to spend a lot of time in front of the computer, doing what could become at times very repetitive work. In reference to that, she mentions that “translating can become time-consuming and exhausting, I tried to take short breaks in between documents so I could destress my mind for a little bit in order to continue working. I would usually take my dog for a walk or grab a snack. Nevertheless, once I would finish my work for the day, I would look at the Spanish documents and feel proud by the progress being made. I understand how difficult it is to live in a foreign country, and it humbled me to provide something familiar for all those Spanish speakers that were to visit the website. I felt like my work was rewarding and would get excited for people to read and hopefully feel as enthusiastic to visit Glacier as I was.”
The translated website is still a work in progress, but we will make it our job to shape Glacier into a place where people regardless of their culture, ethnicity, or way of life, can feel welcome.
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This project and many other critical projects would not be possible without your donations to the Glacier Conservancy.
Learn more about how your support is making other projects possible in Glacier National Park!