Waïl S. Hassan, Professor and Director
Address: 4072D FLB
Waïl S. Hassan is Professor of Comparative & World Literature and English at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he is also affiliated with the Department of French and Italian; the Centers for African, Global, Latin American & Caribbean, and South Asian & Middle Eastern Studies; the Lemann Institute for Brazilian Studies; and the Unit for Criticism and Interpretive Theory. A specialist in modern Arabic literature and intellectual history, he is the author of Tayeb Salih: Ideology and the Craft of Fiction (Syracuse, 2003) and Immigrant Narratives: Orientalism and Cultural Translation in Arab American and Arab British Literature (Oxford, 2011). He has co-edited several journal issues on Arabic and postcolonial studies, in addition to Approaches to Teaching the Works of Naguib Mahfouz (MLA 2012). He is also the translator, from Arabic into English, of Abdelfattah Kilito’s Thou Shalt Not Speak My Language (Syracuse, 2008), and from Portuguese into Arabic, of Alberto Mussa’s O enigma de Qaf, published in Cairo, Egypt, as Lughz al-qāf (National Center for Translation, 2015). He is currently writing a book on Arab-Brazilian literary and cultural relations and editing The Oxford Handbook of the Arabic Novel.
Elizabeth Lowe, Professor and Founding Director (Retired)
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Elizabeth Lowe specializes in literary translation, translation pedagogy, translation theory and terminology. She received her undergraduate education from Barnard College, earned an M.A. in Romance Languages from Queens College of New York, and a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature with a concentration in Translation from the City University of New York. She was a Fulbright Scholar in Colombia and has taught and lectured extensively at universities in Latin America and Europe. ATA certified for Portuguese to English translation, she is a member of the ATA Committee on Standards, and an active member of PEN and the American Literary Translators Association.
Patricia Phillips-Batoma, Lecturer
Address: 4035 FLB
Patricia Phillips-Batoma received her Ph.D. in French from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She teaches courses for the professional track of the MA in Translation and Interpreting, as well as courses for the certificate program. Her research interests include translation studies, the pedagogy of translation and languages for specific purposes, and medieval French literature. She has an affiliate appointment with the Department of French, where she teaches a variety of courses.
Elias Shakkour, Instructor
Address: 4058 FLB
Elias Shakkour is Instructor of Interpreting for the MA in Translation and Interpreting. He holds a BA in German from Colgate University as well as three MA degrees: one in German from Middlebury College, one in Conference Interpretation from the Monterey Institute of International Studies, and one in Linguistics from the University of Illinois. He is currently a Ph.D. candidate in Linguistics at the University of Illinois. Elias grew up bilingual in Arabic and English in Israel, where he attended an American school in Jerusalem. In addition to his fluency in English, Arabic, and German, he is proficient in Spanish, French, and Hebrew and has some knowledge of Italian and Dutch. He is certified by the American Translators Association for Arabic-to-English, German-to-English, Spanish-to-English, and Italian-to-English translation.
Lane Schwartz, Assistant Professor
Address: 4019 FLB
Lane Schwartz works at the intersection of human and machine translation. His research includes work in statistical machine translation, computer-aided translation, and cognitively-motivated language models. Dr. Schwartz holds a B.A. from Luther College with minors in German and Theatre/Dance. He earned an M.Phil in Computer Speech, Text and Internet Technology from the University of Cambridge, and a Ph.D in Computer Science from the University of Minnesota. He is one of the original developers of Joshua, an open source toolkit for tree-based statistical machine translation, and is a frequent contributor to Moses, the de-facto standard for phrase-based statistical machine translation.
Laura Ramirez Polo, Lecturer
Address: 4058 FLB
Laura Ramírez Polo holds a degree in Translation and Interpretation from the University Jaume I in Castellón, Spain, as well as a postgraduate certificate in Computational Linguistics from the Ludwig-Maximlians-Universität in Munich, Germany. She received her PhD in Controlled Languages and Machine Translation from the University of Valencia in Spain. She is also finishing a degree in Library and Information Science at the Universitat Politècnica de Valencia. Laura has an extensive experience as associate lecturer at the Universitat de Valencia EG, where she has been teaching Translation Technology and Research Techniques to Translators for ten years. She has also collaborated with the MA in Translation Technologies and Localization held at the University Jaume I in Spain, teaching CAT Tools, Machine Translation and Terminology. She also has a 15-years experience as a freelance translator from English, German and French into Spanish, as well as a trainer and language processes professional. She currently teaches courses for the MA in Translation and Interpreting, as well as courses for the certificate program at the University of Illinois. Her research interests include computer-aided translation, terminology, human-machine interaction and new types of digital genres for translation.
Christopher Higgins, Associate Professor, Education, Policy, Organization, and Leadership
Christopher Higgins received his PhD from Teachers College, Columbia University in 1998. He is an Associate Professor in the department of Education, Policy, Organization, and Leadership. He is also an affiliate faculty member with the Unit for Criticism and Interpretive Theory. Dr. Higgins also serves as director of the Illinois Teacher Collaborative at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His scholarly interests fall into two main areas: philosophy of teaching and the aims of education. His work in the first area concerns teacher motivation and identity, transformative dialogue and the teacher-student relationship. His work in the second area deals with imagination and aesthetic education; humanism and liberal learning; and vocational education and the nature of work. Dr. Higgins has several publications including his book, The Good Life of Teaching: An Ethics of Professional Practice (Wiley-Blackwell, 2011).
Robert Jenkins, Assistant Professor of Germanic Languages and Literatures and Austria-Illinois Exchange Program Manager
Robert Jenkins is the Education Abroad Manager for the Austria-Illinois Exchange Program and Assistant Professor.After earning his B.A. in German and English he studied contemporary German literature as a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar at the Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg. Once he completed the M.A. degree in German at the University of California, he continued his education in German literature at Vanderbilt University. While there, he received a prestigious Graduate Teaching Fellowship and a one-year DAAD dissertation grant for research in Germany .His research interests include late 19th and early 20th century German and Austrian literature and contemporary world literature. He also has interests in translation, the philosophy of (literary) language, urban-modernism, media studies, concepts of masculinity as circumscribed by popular violence, and second language development through education abroad.
Anastasia Lakhtikova, Adjunct Lecturer
Anastasia Lakhtikova received her PhD in English and Comparative Literature from Washington University in St. Louis. She has been teaching as a Lecturer and Adjunct at the Center for Translation Studies since 2009. Dr. Lakhtikova is a literary translator from Russian, Ukrainian and English. Her literary and academic translations include texts by Victor Pelevin, Serhyi Zhadan, Evgen Nakonechnyi, Rob Tobin, and Mark Steinberg. Her research interests include hybrid identities, bilingualism, translation theory and practice, Russian émigré literature, and Soviet women and Soviet food culture. She has published in the journals Translation and Interpreting Studies, Novyi Zhurnal and World Literature Today. Dr. Lakhtikova has previously taught the Russian language and English composition at UIUC, Case Western Reserve University, and Notre Dame College. Currently, she teaches linguistics at Cleveland State University.
Cheryl Gerber, Office Manager
Address: 4080E FLB
Cheryl Gerber is the Office Manager for the Center for Translation Studies. She is the administrator for the program and acts on behalf of the Director in his absence. She has two Associate in Applied Science degrees (A.A.S.) - one in Child-Development and the other Office Professional, plus two certificates in Office Assistant and Microsoft Application Specialist from Parkland College. She is also a certified Microsoft Office Specialist in Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, and Outlook. Cheryl is currently pursuing her bachelor's degree in General Studies at Eastern Illinois University at Charleston, Illinois.