Canada has a long tradition in translation practice and trainingg . The federal Governmnets Translation Bureau is the largets recruiter in the country. They require to have a BA in Translation (compulsory) for any candidate. Why? that is because the 4 yrs training at the university folows a rigorous and practical process. In canada , you may either take a 'coop BA' MODE of instruction which includes pais internship for abou 3 yrs, or take a traditional BA course with contents on linguistics, translation theory and practice as well as translation technologies but no field work. So, students gain experience in teh field ( companies , agencies) and get paid for it.
A second point i would like to refer to is the importance of taking degrees or getting further professional development. I personally see resistence againt this as degrading our professional status as social actors. Why shouldn't we have the same professional status like other (traditional and old professions like medecine or law?), doctors themselves started their parctice (in ancient times) learning by doing (hit and miss principle), but they developped as professions over time and were institutionalised via education and training (social and political recognition). Why us translators need to be always timid and lacking self esteem to make our voices heard in the community? we are doing the same social jobs like doctors and lawyers or engineers... transfering what is not known to be known via language, creating powerful relations between nations and people via puting them together via linguistic communication...building knowledge heritage..ect. We need education at higher level as well as doing' teh artisanal job'. Professions , all of them , underwent a similar process: from learning by doing (artisan way) to theorising and institutionalising the profession...to GAINING SOCIAL RECOGNITION AND RESPECT. We cannot saty invisibles and acting behind the scenes all the time.