Who is CWooD?
My name is Cindy Wood. I have been a nationally certified interpreter since 2006 and have lived/worked in three different states over the past 14 years. The majority of my work experiences have been in post-secondary, mental health, medical, and community settings. I also have six years of community college teaching experience, and served on the Michigan Chapter Board of RID as Treasurer for four years. During my time on the board I was also very involved in the professional development endeavors for our membership. I currently live in SE Michigan and continue to work full time as a freelance interpreter.
I am a Michigan native, graduated from Adrian College with a BBA in Marketing then went on to work for several companies including; Barnes and Noble, JPI, and Enterprise Rent-a-Car. While in college I met a few deaf people through a CODA friend, and it was during this time, this exposure to grass roots Deaf people and their culture, that I developed a passion for sign language. My entire life has been spent working with the public and facilitating all types of communication. After graduating from Adrian College, I moved to Prescott, Arizona for two years, before migrating to Austin, Texas, where I began my second college experience. After taking a few classes in Deaf Education, and Speech Language Pathology at the University of Texas, I realized that I missed being a part of the Deaf community. I reached out to my CODA friend and was encouraged to find an Interpreter Training Program (ITP) so I did! A couple months later I headed back north where I began my interpreting career in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. All my American Sign Language (ASL) classes were taught by Deaf instructors at UWM and I immersed myself in the community. Being a part of this amazing Deaf community prepared me for my next big adventure, graduate school at Gallaudet University.
In 2004, I found myself living in a dorm room, navigating another new city, and was head over heals in love with my new environment. For two years I studied the process of interpreting, and researched a number of different niches within the interpreting field, all the while surrounded by Deaf students, faculty and community members. I will never forget my experiences in Washington, DC and will always be grateful for these times. After spending five years in DC my life, as it routinely does, presented yet another opportunity for growth, so I moved to Virginia Beach, VA. I left Washington, DC in 2009, with my Master's Degree in Interpretation, and began teaching Foundation classes in the ITP at Tidewater Community College in Virginia Beach. Teaching allowed me to share so much of what I had learned in graduate school about the interpreting process and about the importance of building competence in both English and ASL. It became very clear to me that we never stop learning and developing our language skills, cultural awareness, and Extra Linguistic Knowledge (ELK). This made me even more passionate about the field of interpreting!
While in Virginia Beach I stepped into new comfort zones, the world of VRS and teaching. Oh, and the most important role of my life, motherhood!! I worked, taught, and lived in Virginia Beach for six years before realizing that it was time to be near family, which meant returning to my home state of Michigan. My son Trevor and I have been home since 2015, and have put down roots in Milan, Michigan. I continue to work primarily in post-secondary, medical and VRS realms and try to spend as much time as possible savoring the fleeting moments of my son's childhood.
I strongly believe that our profession is one that is greatly underestimated, that the demands and skills required are often misunderstood, and undervalued. In order to make a difference, to do the best we can do for our consumers, we need to constantly be dialoging, engaging in difficult conversations, and continually striving to improve our skills. This is what I hope to accomplish through this platform. I am thrilled to be starting this new business venture! My goal is to offer relevant, exciting, and much needed opportunities for on-going professional development for many of my colleagues, here in Michigan and beyond! I can't wait to see you at a workshop!
"move your x"
"Move your x" is a phrase I picked up from one of my first, and most favorite ITP instructors. She explained that we all have an "x", and we can never be where anyone else's "x" lives. "X" represents where you are in your own personal journey, your own mental, physical, educational, religious, political views etc. You should always be striving to "MOVE YOUR X"; sometimes you are moving up, sometimes down, but as long as you are moving it you are not stagnant. May you continually "move your x" !!!