#WhereWeWork Teletherapist Feature – SLI Brianne

October 21, 2016By: VocoVision

That’s right, it’s time for another exciting #WhereWeWork feature! This week, Brianne – a skilled sign language interpreter – gives an honest account of her journey into teletherapy with VocoVision. If you’ve ever considered working as a tele-interpreter, Brianne’s story might give you some inspiration to take that leap – read on and see for yourself!

“Let me start by saying that I truly LOVE my job through VocoVision. Being a part of such a cutting-edge form of educational interpreting is thrilling! When I began my job search, I assumed that I would have to either commute over an hour each way daily, or consider relocating. Neither option was appealing for my family or me. When my recruiter, Alison, suggested that I consider “teletherapy” or tele-interpreting, I was pretty surprised. I was familiar with video remote interpreting, but had never considered it for an education environment. I reached out to some of my colleagues with experience in education and VRI [Video Remote Interpreting] settings…and I liked what I learned. I was confident that in the right [school] district, this would be an amazing opportunity!

Schools across the nation are struggling to find and retain qualified and/or certified interpreters. Many districts are unwilling to offer competitive pay to interpreters. Others are willing to pay but unable to find suitable candidates. Students in Deaf/Hard of Hearing programs are suffering because of things that are out of their control. Budgets, limited resources and changing legislation have impacted the services provided to these children. VocoVision provides a way to help connect qualified candidates with schools looking to fill their vacancies. Utilization of modern technology allows schools to focus on the needs of the STUDENTS, instead of the impact on the bottom line.  Faced with shouldering the cost of relocating a qualified new hire, many schools were casting a tiny net into a small pool of potential employees. Districts are now expanding their search area to encompass the whole country. The result is mutually beneficial. Interpreters can work from anywhere as long as they have a reliable internet connection. Moving across the country to “follow the work” is a thing of the past.

For my first VocoVision assignment, I interviewed with a district in another state {and time zone!} and immediately felt that it was a great match. The teachers for the D/HH students asked all the right questions, and we shared a lot of the same concerns, such as:

  • What if this happens?
  • How will we handle that situation?
  • Can we count on each other for support?
  • What if this doesn’t work?

Fortunately for all of us, it’s been a success! The students are responding well, and it really feels like I’m right there with them. With the videoconferencing software we are using, I am able share my screen to the students’ iPad, enabling me to demonstrate or elaborate on things as needed. The mainstream teachers have provided me with their PowerPoint docs, so I can follow along on my screen and see what is being shown in the classroom. There’s even a whiteboard option where I can write or draw something, and the students can use their touch screen to add to it.

                                                          Here’s a view of my average day in the office. I’ve opened my videoconferencing window, and the homework for my first class in a browser. While I wait for my student to log in, I’m reviewing a list of technical vocabulary terms. I’ve also got some personal touches that help keep me inspired. And for those of you who are wondering…yes, those are yoga pants.

The only difference is I’m working from the comfort of my own home! In between classes, I’m able to switch loads of laundry, load any visuals for the next class onto my desktop and take a breather. On my lunch break, I head down the hall to my kitchen, take my dog for a quick walk, and take a few minutes to catch up on e-mails and paperwork.  Working through Voco has been a game-changer for me. No more hour-plus commutes, I’m not the last mommy to pick my child up at daycare, and at the end of the day, I know that my job made a difference — and that is what it’s really about.”

-Brianne C.

If traffic is bringing you down, build your spirits back up with a work-from-home teletherapy opportunity! Check out our current positions right here.

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