Lara Matta has been announced as the new assistant director of the Translation Center of the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
A speaker of Arabic, English and French, Matta is committed to building connections across languages and cultures. Matta’s experience and knowledge blends academic credentials with professional training in management and leadership. She has worked in higher education settings for more than 15 years, in the private and public sectors. Prior to joining the Translation Center, she worked as a consultant at Pearson on licensure test development and as an educator of Arabic, English and French languages and literatures both in elementary and secondary settings and in higher education.
Matta’s interdisciplinary research on intermediality and textural modes of reading in the visual arts and poetry, draws on the philosophy of literature, word and image studies, and book culture, and has earned her prestigious fellowships including a Mellon-Sawyer Doctoral Fellowship for the World Studies Project Seminar Series preceded by two consecutive residencies at the Five College Women Studies Research Center.
Matta is an experienced translator and interpreter of Arabic and a French language editor. She translates academic articles as well as poetry from Arabic to English and from English to Arabic.
Matta holds a Ph.D. in comparative literature from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, a master’s degree in anglophone languages, literatures and cultures from Université Paul Valéry in France, and an undergraduate degree in anglophone languages and literatures from the Lebanese University. She earned certificates from the Mount Holyoke College Program in Critical Social Thought and more recently from the Leadership Certificate Programs at Cornell University.
At the Translation Center, Matta will manage the daily operations and work closely with the director Regina Galasso, associate professor in the Spanish and Portuguese studies program, to fulfill, develop, and further the services, programs and outreach initiatives.
Since 1979, the UMASS Translation Center has been providing translation-related services in over 80 languages.
The Translation Center offers translation, interpretation, workshops, and consultation services from a rigorous academic setting that is connected to scholarship, professional organizations, and an international community.
The Translation Center works with translators and other language professionals at UMASS Amherst, in the region, and from all over the world to provide innovative solutions that serve the needs of clients, locally and beyond.
The Translation Center provides students with professional experience. Students work closely with the Translation Center's project managers on specific assignments and also with the director and assistant director on special projects.
The Translation Center uses proceeds to support teaching, research, and translation-related activities. The center is committed to bringing awareness to issues of responsible language use and language access, equity and inclusion through educational initiatives and outreach.