4. A Signer Helps Students

Joan’s job is to use American Sign Language enable instructors to communicate with English-speaking deaf students. went to school for three years to get certificate. According to Joan, learning ASL was not difficult, but learning to be an excellent interpreter take a lifetime.

Three years after enrolling at College, Joan graduated as a Certified ASL Interpreter. of job opportunities were waiting for her. She the college environment, so she applied for a at Newton Community College, a school with 28,000 . There are 22 hearing-impaired students at NCC. Joan worked with most of them.

They are very with her. Often they invite her to have cup of coffee after class. They talk about and about what they hope to do after . Sometimes the women talk about personal things, especially how hard it is to find “Mr. Right.” agrees with them, saying she herself has given on finding him. They also talk about their movies, books, and music. Even deaf people can “” music. Many are good dancers.

Joan is one the four interpreters on campus. Two are full-time; works part-time. She accompanies a deaf student to . The student sits in the front row. Joan sits near the teacher, facing the student. She as the teacher talks. If the class is than 90 minutes long, there is only one per student. If the class is longer, there two interpreters per student. They alternate; one interpreter sign for 20 minutes, and then the other .

Joan will go back to school soon. She to become a Certified French Sign Language Interpreter. already speaks French fluently; her mom taught it her. Her mom also taught Joan that American are hopeless. She frequently told Joan that only French man knows how to make a woman like a woman. Joan idolizes her mom, and her advice to heart. It will take Joan three more years to get certified.

What then? she will leave California, move to Paris, find romantic French boyfriend, and live happily ever after. ’s her plan.