Argentum Translations on the News: Interview with Paula and Mariela

Argentum Translations on the News: Interview with Paula and Mariela


Paula Penovi and Mariela Solano are interviewed about language services in NC.

Paula Penovi and Mariela Solano were interviewed on the importance of language access and translation services in North Carolina. 👏

Language is more than just words; it’s about understanding, empathy, and connection. The Argentum Translations team are on a mission to break down language barriers and make communication accessible for all.

🗺️ Argentum Translations: Bridging the Gap 🗺️

Based in North Carolina, Argentum Translations has been providing language services at the local, state, and national levels. With a network of professionals proficient in over 50 languages, they are making waves in the field of interpretation and translation.

🌟 A Dream Rooted in Heritage 🌟

The company’s name, Argentum Translations, draws its inspiration from the Latin word for “silver” and reflects the roots of its founders, twin sisters Paula and Cynthia Penovi, who are from Argentina. Their passion for language access and education has been a driving force since childhood.

🌍 Mariela’s Journey: From Costa Rica to North Carolina 🌍

Mariela Solano-Segreda, another key member of the Argentum team, migrated from Costa Rica to the United States at a young age. She vividly remembers the challenges she faced due to the lack of Spanish translations and services. This experience led her to become a community health worker and interpreter at a young age, advocating for her family and friends.

🤝 Filling the Void: Language Access for All 🤝

Cynthia, Paula and Mariela share a common goal: ensuring everyone has access to information, including crucial documents like medical and city-related materials. They emphasize that true language access goes beyond mere translation; it involves conveying the appropriate tone and context to the audience.

💪 Empowering Through Translation 💪

Argentum Translations recognizes that some translations and tones cannot be replicated by machines. They continue to advocate for certified translations, especially in the medical field, where a single word can make a life-changing difference.

🙌 Let’s Celebrate Paula, Cynthia, Mariela, and the entire Argentum Translations team for their unwavering dedication to breaking down language barriers and ensuring that everyone has a voice. Together, we can create a world where language is never a barrier to understanding and empathy. 🌎💬 #LanguageAccess #TranslationServices #Empowerment #CommunicationForAll

Learn a little bit more about Argentum Translations, language access, and the work we do in the community here:
Thanks, Spectrum News 1 North Carolina for the spotlight!

Watch the video and read the full article here:

Professional Translators

Professional Translations: Being Bilingual Is not Enough

Written by Alexandru Tanase

Professional Translations: Being Bilingual Is not Enough

When a business wants to expand its services, it can be difficult to cater to new target clients without the right translation services. That is why it is extremely important to hire reliable, professional translators. The truth is that being bilingual is not enough. Whether you are working with foreign business partners or clients, professionalism is key, so certified, dependable experts that can help translate everything accurately and without errors, additions, and omissions are a must.

You can rely on certified translators

In order to receive a certification, translators need to go through a long, challenging process to prove that their work quality is second to none. Usually, a bilingual candidate needs to study 4 to 5 years to get  a translation degree and master the grammar, punctuation, and syntax of both languages. Professional translators also need to be excellent readers, analysts, writers, researchers, terminologists, linguists, and tech users. A certification shows that a translator is a true professional, one that has proven to deliver an incredible precision, value, and quality for the money.

Maintaining a consistent quality and style

A certified translation will always maintain the same, high quality throughout the entire content, file, document, or website. That is because a certified expert will always double-check, use professional tools, and ensure that the work quality is flawless, accurate, and complete before turning it in. That is not the case with many uncertified translators or bilingual students.

Being bilingual is not enough

Some people may think that, by being bilingual, a person is automatically qualified to provide translation services. However, if you are looking for reliable, high-quality services, that is not the case. Working with a certified professional assures you the person in question has all the qualifications necessary to translate for a variety of industries (being proficient when handling medical, IT, scientific, legal, or technical content) exceeding your clients’ expectations.

Making sure the content is culturally correct

Translating is more than just finding the most appropriate wording in a target language. You also want to ensure that the translation fits cultural norms, standards, and conventions. A certified translator immerses themselves not only into the language, but also the specific local culture and dialect of each country and community. Therefore, cultural competence is essential when selecting a translation services provider.

Accessing industry-specific knowledge/expertise

Aside from just choosing the right words in the target language, a certified translator will also provide industry-specific knowledge. Most of the time, certified translators are actually specialized in a subject matter and a certain field. As experts, they can avoid both conceptual and linguistic errors.


Hiring a professional, certified translator is the best way to have direct access to the best translation services out there. It is very important to ensure that all your translations are accurate, professional, and effective. This is why at Argentum Translations we require all of our linguists to be certified or have degrees in the translation field. You can read more about this in this interview by the Chamber of Commerce to get to know us better!

Our team at Argentum Translations is here to provide you with the best language services in more than 50 languages. Learn more about our company by reading our reviews. With our help, you can gain access to some of the best certified translators and professionals with decades of experience in various industries since we only work with translators that hold a bachelor’s degree or a master’s degree in Translation, or who are certified by the American Translators Association. If you are looking for dependable, fast, and efficient translations, contact us today, and we guarantee you will have an extraordinary experience with every project!

Wilderness Medicine

Translation Challenges: Wilderness Medicine in Spanish

Written by Paula Penovi
ATA-Certified Translator and Certified Medical Interpreter (CMI-Spanish)

At Argentum Translations, we are constantly on the lookout for opportunities to contribute to our community and give back. As part of our pro-bono translation services for nonprofits, we recently translated the Wilderness Medical Society Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Prevention and Treatment of Acute Altitude Illness (2019 Update).

All the diverse content we work with presents different challenges that require various approaches and translation strategies. In this series, we are shedding light on some peculiarities of technical and medical translation.

Today I would like to introduce some of the main challenges of translating wilderness medical content into Spanish for the US and Latin American populations.

Challenge 1: Translating “Wilderness Medicine” with Cultural Competence

What is the definition of “wilderness medicine”? What would be the best way to refer to the Wilderness Medical Society in Spanish?

One of the main challenges our team faced when researching the term “wilderness” was the lack of publicly available and professionally translated content about wilderness medicine. Most of the information published online appears to have been translated using machine translation tools, which leads to misleading and poorly translated Spanish versions. As an example, Google Translate’s default translation for “Wilderness Medical Society” is “Sociedad Médica del Desierto” (Desert Medical Society), which will cause most of this content to be ignored or discarded by Spanish-speaking clinicians, researchers, and patients looking for information that is not exclusively related to desert environments.

Another common mistranslation that we recommended against was “Sociedad Médica de la Naturaleza” (Nature Medical Society) since the Hispanic population tends to associate “medicina natural” or “medicina de la naturaleza” (natural medicine) with alternative/herbal medicine. The same goes for using the word “silvestre” when referring to the general concept of “wilderness medicine,” because it seems to have a connotation mainly associated with animal and veterinary medicine.

As surprising as it may sound, the definition of “wilderness medicine” is actually centered on the location and conditions under which medical services are provided. According to Wikipedia and the WMS, it is “the practice of medicine where definitive care is more than one hour away, and often days to weeks away” and it is defined by circumstances such as “difficult patient access, limited equipment, and environmental extremes; decision making, creative thinking and improvising.”

The preferred terms for “wilderness medicine” in Latin America and Spain are “medicina en espacios naturales”, “medicina en zonas remotas”, “medicina en medios inhóspitos”, and “medicina en zonas agrestes”. The International Association of Medical Translators and Writers (Tremédica) recommends translating “wilderness medicine” as “medicina en zonas agrestes” (in which context, “agreste” is related to “falto de urbanidad”) or “medicina en zonas remotas”. We concluded that “medicina en áreas remotas” (“medicine in remote areas”) was the most neutral and understandable option considering the diversity of our target audience, and the fact that wilderness medicine environments include mountains, deserts, oceans, submarines, spaceships, and caves, among other austere or extreme settings. However, the name “Wilderness Medical Society” and its acronym are widely recognized by the international community and were preserved so as not to decrease its recognition and the support for its content.



Challenge 2: Translating Medication Brand Names or Active Ingredients

What´s the difference between medication brand names and active ingredients? Are they all translated and capitalized?

A common question raised by many translation students when working on scientific or medical papers is related to the “name of medications,” such as Acetazolamide, Diamox, Dexamethasone, Decadron, Ibuprofen, Advil, Nifedipine, Adalat, etc. Are there official versions in English AND Spanish?

The World Health Organization facilitates the identification of pharmaceutical substances or active ingredients by using International Nonproprietary Names (INN) with the objective of selecting a single name of worldwide acceptability for each pharmaceutical active substance. We call them “denominaciones comunes internacionales” or “DCI” in Spanish and, yes, there are rules that regulate their translation! These are the generic names of medications, usually a shorthand version of the drug’s chemical name, structure, or formula (acetazolamide, dexamethasone, ibuprofen, nifedipine). In Spanish, these names are written in lowercase; they must contain certain prefixes, roots and suffixes; and they have a masculine or feminine article.

In contrast, each pharmaceutical company that markets a drug gives them a brand name, which tends to be catchy and memorable. To avoid confusion, the WHO states that trademarks should never be derived from INNs or contain common stems used in these nonproprietary names. Commercial brand names are proper names and should therefore be capitalized and left untranslated (Diamox, Decadron, Advil, Adalat), without articles. We may also see these symbols next to the name: ® or ™. Most brand names vary depending on the country, and we may need to make a clarification if the US drug brand name is identical or similar to drug brand names used in other countries containing different active ingredients in order to avoid confusion or medication errors (for example, Advil’s active ingredient in the US is ibuprofen, while in the Philippines the same brand name’s active ingredient is mefenamic acid). It is important for us to always check the names of medications to make sure that our translations are correct, accurate, and do not introduce any ambiguity in our target text, especially when addressing the Hispanic population from the US and over 30 different countries.



Challenge 3: Researching and Finding Reliable Translation Sources: “Altura” vs. “Altitud”

In translation, research is everything. We are very lucky to have reliable guidelines for translation created by the Royal Academy of Medicine, Tremédica, and Cosnautas, but that doesn’t mean that we don’t need a second opinion. When translating about the prevention and treatment of acute altitude illness, the nuances between terms such as “altura” and “altitud” (height and altitude) become truly relevant.

Unfortunately, we discovered that two of our most reliable dictionaries, the DTM and DRAE, regard “altura” and “altitud” as synonyms, and they may fall short as our main sources of consultation. In this case, it’s important for us to note that “altura” refers to the extent of elevation above the surface of the Earth or the ground, while “altitude” refers to the vertical elevation above the sea level. In conclusion, in order to get these lexical choices right, it’s essential for us to reach out to experts and double-check lexical terms by resorting to specialized sources to produce the most accurate translations.

Stay tuned for more insights and tips when facing translation challenges!


Paula Penovi Certified Translator

Argentum Translations Certified Translator ATA Director Paula Penovi

Paula Penovi is a Certified Translator (CT) by the American Translator’s Association (ATA) and a Certified Medical Interpreter (CMI), and holds a master’s degree in Medical and Healthcare Translation. She has volunteered as a researcher/terminologist at the Research Institute of United States Spanish (RIUSS) and is an active member of the ATA’s Translation Company Division’s Leadership Council. She is one of the directors of Argentum Translations and has over a decade of experience in providing high-quality technical and scientific translation services in the medical and technology fields.





La traducción de los medicamentos“, Fernando A. Navarro. El Trujamán. Centro Virtual Cervantes.
“Identical or similar brand names used in different countries for medications with different active ingredients: a descriptive analysis”, Lubna Merchant, Randall Lutter, and Sherry Chang. National Library of Medicine.
“Altitud y altura”, Fundéu
Wilderness Medical Society’s website and Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Prevention and Treatment of Acute Altitude Illness (2019 Update)
Altura, Diccionario de términos médicos (DTM)
Altura, Diccionario de la Real Academia Española (DRAE)
“International Nonproprietary Names Programme and Classification of Medical Products”, World Health Organization
Panace@. Vol. XI, n.o 31., 2010. Tremédica.

Breaks Down Language Barriers

Argentum Translations Breaks Down Language Barriers in the Fight Against COVID-19

Almost one year after the World Health Organization identified the coronavirus pandemic as a public health emergency, Argentum Translations keeps joining efforts to break down language barriers and keep our Hispanic community safe and involved in Asheville, North Carolina. Keeping our entire community informed and together is the only way we can fight the pandemic and slow the spread of the coronavirus. We will be volunteering as Spanish Interpreters with the Western Interpreter Network (WIN) in a few vaccination events around the area in the coming weeks, as we keep translating public health content and patient information on a regular basis to keep supporting global health organizations and local efforts in their fight against COVID-19.

Cynthia and Paula Penovi from Argentum Translations strive to see their community access COVID-19 information in a language and format that they understand. That is why they have coordinated their company’s efforts to translate urgent and essential coronavirus information for their local community and the whole Hispanic population around the United States. For instance, they have helped local healthcare organizations and departments translate the 3 Ws (Wear, Wait and Wash) in a way that would resonate with the Hispanic community: las 3 “M” (mascarilla puesta, mantener distancia y manos limpias).


Pictures courtesy of JMPRO TV, a grassroots media company that covers pressing issues affecting the Hispanic community in Western North Carolina.

Learn more with this note about the last vaccination event targeted at our local Hispanic community and our work as Spanish Interpreters, by Enlace Latino NC (Spanish).

Enlace Latino NC is an independent nonprofit news organization in Spanish that covers politics, government, immigration, and community affairs in North Carolina.

WIN is a program of the WCMS Foundation with the purpose of breaking language barriers to improve access to care and reduce health disparities.

One of our values is our deep commitment to improving the lives of our community members, and we are very proud and excited to continue to work towards this goal with all these amazing companies and organizations!

Translations and Community Involvement

2020 Recap: Pro-Bono Translations and Community Involvement


Join us for a brief recap of what our year looked like in terms of pro-bono and volunteer work!


This year, Argentum Translations provided pro-bono translations to two amazing organizations in North Carolina: Our VOICE and MANNA FoodBank. Learn more about our fight against sexual violence and hunger in North Carolina and how you can help below.


Our VOICE is a non-profit crisis intervention and prevention agency that serves victims of sexual violence in North Carolina. Their mission is to build a community that is free of sexual violence and serve all individuals affected by sexual assault and abuse, through counseling, advocacy, and education.  Learn more about how you can get involved here:


MANNA FoodBank is a private, not-for-profit service organization that links the food industry whose mission is to involve, educate and unite people in the work of ending hunger in Western North Carolina. Individual donors help ensure that MANNA can be there for the more than 100,000 people facing an empty plate in WNC every year. You can help by donating here:


Argentum Translations provided these organizations with language services in Spanish, increasing community access to their resources. We managed to do so by partnering with Instituto Superior Lenguas Vivas from Misiones, Argentina. We offered a translation internship as a requirement for translation students to graduate. In this internship, we worked together to strengthen students’ translation, proofreading, research, and terminology skills, as well as enhance their educational background, put their training into practice and help them gain valuable work experience.


To learn more about Instituto Superior Lenguas Vivas, visit their website at


One of our values is our deep commitment to improving the lives of our community members, and we are very proud and excited to continue to work towards this goal next year!




Translation Process

Our Translation Process Explained

Written by Cynthia Penovi

What happens when you order a translation?


Translation is a highly-intellectual process that involves extensive linguistic knowledge, cultural competence, outstanding writing skills, and a contrastive text and genre analytical assessment. This is why, in order to ensure that a translation conveys your message accurately and faithfully, we use a three-step process where three different professional linguists handle your translation and make sure it has the highest quality possible. The three steps are translation, edition, and quality assurance.

When you contact us, we will ask you to send us all the content that you need to translate, with any relevant reference files or style guides. We will analyze the content to understand your goals, needs, and expectations. We will also provide you with information about our services and answer any questions you might have. We will ask you for any additional information we may need, and you will be provided with a quote and a turnaround time.

Once the project is confirmed, the content is then translated into the required language by a first linguist. After that, the file is thoroughly edited by a second linguist to fix any issues related to grammar, meaning, terminology, readability, cultural adequacy, punctuation, compliance with instructions and specific requirements, etc. A third linguist will then make a rigorous final quality assurance assessment to make sure the resulting translation is in perfect condition for you and your target audience. If the content needs to be formatted using graphic design software and images with text need to be recreated in another language, an additional step called desktop publishing (DTP) is added in order to make sure graphics, fonts, artwork, and images are properly designed for your translation project.

You can also request the creation of a glossary with your preferred terminology for all the translation team to implement, which can be built upon and updated to increase consistency and coherence in the project. If you have specific requirements for the translation, a style guide can be elaborated so that all of your guidelines are properly followed.


Translation process Argentum Translations

Our Three-Step Translation Process Explained


How do we select the linguists who will be handling each task?

As certified translators with BAs and MAs, we are especially concerned with delivering high-quality services. We collaborate with a wide network of reliable and professional translators, proofreaders, and editors who work in different fields and with different languages across the globe. Our team consists of linguists who are native speakers and have degrees, certifications and credentials in the industry, which are recognized in their native countries. When we receive a translation project, the team assigned to it is carefully selected based on the translators’ language, expertise in the subject matter, years of experience translating such content, academic background, relevant degrees, and specializations. Our linguists go through an extensive screening process to determine if they meet the necessary requirements for a project.

Do you need to translate a file? Send it to to get started!

Importance of SEO Translation

The Importance of SEO Translation

Written by Paula Penovi
ATA-Certified Translator and Certified Medical Interpreter (CMI-Spanish)


What is Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?

If you are a business owner, you know SEO is meant to help companies attract new customers by increasing their website traffic, making it more visible to the users of a web search engine, such as Google, Bing and Yahoo. In today’s world, showing up on the front page of Google can be a deciding factor for your business. Marketing specialists use all kinds of strategies and techniques to obtain a high-ranking placement in the search results of a page by optimizing their online content and using the right keywords.

Producing quality content for your website

Google always tries to direct the customer to the best results that will serve their needs, so it tends to avoid spammy and mediocre content full of links and keyword stuffing. When producing content for your website, doing your keyword research up-front is crucial so that you can include it throughout all your texts to rank well. However, the use of keywords needs to be strategic and all about semantics, since jamming them into your text as much as you can will do little to improve your rankings.

Multilingual SEO, translation and localization

Considering that SEO optimization is such a fine art based on fresh and rich content and the tactical use of keywords, you would be right to assume that the literal translation of content and keywords will not rank as well in a different language and culture. A poorly executed translation may destroy all the original successful content you worked so hard to achieve. That is why it is important to pick experts in SEO translation who work to boost your website’s position on search engine results in international markets. When localizing your website and doing multilingual SEO (adapting your content to a specific market and culture), a professional translator will pick the most relevant keywords in terms of high-search volume and low complexity, and therefore it is mandatory that they have extensive knowledge on translation, cultural mediation and sociolinguistics.

Culturally competent translators to best serve your needs

In conclusion, there are many factors involved in creating effective multilingual SEO content to reach an international audience, including the norms and rules of each language and culture, the register and target market, humor, icons and symbols, cultural and religious values, special characters, etc. Keyword research and analysis also play a major role in discovering keywords that already bring traffic to your website and your competitors’ in different countries. Finding the right linguist for this task will certainly help your business reach a wider audience and take your business to the next level.

Let us help you with that task!

Contact us for a free quote.