Religious professionals, including Bible translators, face an uphill climb as they seek to master, retain, and continually update all the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in their calling and profession. Whether you’re a minister or pastor, a biblical scholar or translator, you know how difficult it is to stay sharp in your essential fields, from linguistics and biblical studies to social sciences and the humanities. The Nida Institute’s program of professional development stands out as a vigorous response to this need, with programs of graduate-level course work offered both in the United States and in a growing number of venues around the world.
For religious professionals seeking to earn a Doctor of Ministry degree, the Nida Institute collaborates with Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (GCTS) to offer a DMin track in Bible Translation. This program brings GCTS students together with participants in the Nida School of Bible Translation for one of the three two-week residencies required for the degree. Seminary students are incorporated into a class of 25-30 Bible translators and consultants from around the world, many of whom have earned PhDs and a wealth of experience in teaching and translation in a wide range of contexts.
To meet the burgeoning need for professional development within global translation agencies such as the United Bible Societies and SIL International, the Institute regularly brings Bible translators and consultants together at its campus in Misano Adriatico, Italy, for course work, tutoring and engaged interaction with leading scholars and trainers. A regular series of week-long seminars on topics ranging from globalization, new media translation and translation tools to semiotics, technology and biblical studies helps to bring these professionals up to date in fields crucial to success in their work. The Nida School of Translation Studies, a two-week seminar convened each spring to critically explore various aspects of translation theory, linguistics, and cultural studies in relation to a well-defined topic or problem, is still another venue available for professional development.
In addition to these Nida-based programs, Nida Institute staff contribute to scholarly programs in a wide variety of other settings around the world. The Nida Lecture series, presented regularly at the annual and international meetings of the Society of Biblical Literature, is designed to provide scholars of religious discourse an opportunity to challenge and augment their traditional understanding of the theory and practice of Bible translation. Nida Institute staff also teach for six weeks biennially at three Pontifical universities in Rome, contributing to professional and graduate programs in theological and biblical studies for Roman Catholic clergy and religious. Further staff lectures have been presented in venues ranging from the Evangelical School of Theology in Wroclaw, Poland, to Trinity Theological College in Hong Kong.