FBI Careers: Language Analyst

FBI Linguist Analyst Yolanda Glover-Ballantyne talks about her experience working with the FBI.

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My name is Yolanda Glover-Ballantyne. I'm a language specialist.

On a day-to-day basis, it's mostly translating. From time to time interpreting. I've been to Panama, mostly Spanish-speaking countries, Panama being one of them. And most recently, I went to Guatemala.

I've had to be on little rickety boats and going up hills and mountains and talking to people who live in very primitive conditions. We literally tell the agent, or other personnel, what to expect when they go in to see a particular cultural person. You know, you do this, you don't do this. This is what they mean by this, this is not what they mean by this. I think that's the most important job or function of a linguist is to provide our customers with that additional aspect, which really can make or break a project.

You need to know or be on top of what's happening globally. Even though I am a Spanish linguist, we know that the world is interconnected. So, I'm not only... you don't only have to be familiar with the places where they speak your language, but you have to be familiar with all other important happenings worldwide.

Working for the FBI in general is the beginning of a career that you will never regret. You will not only be working, but you're learning at the same time.

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