Make The Connection

March 31, 2020 | By Cole Hatcher

Found in Translation

Ohio Wesleyan Student Helps Create Museum Website, Discovers New Option for Future

Ohio Wesleyan student Kaitie Welch ’20 (center) worked with Italian artists Giulio De Vita (left) and Emanuele Barison to create an English-language website for the new comics museum, Palazzo Arti Fumetto Friuli. (Photo by Stefania Bertolini-Puckett)
Kaitie Welch explored Pordenone during her trip to Italy to complete a translation project with Modern Foreign Languages faculty member Stefania Bertolini-Puckett. (Photo by Stefania Bertolini-Puckett)

Name: Kaitie Welch ’20
Hometown: Columbus, Ohio
Major: English – Creative Writing
Minor: Renaissance Studies
OWU Connection experience: “Translations for Palazzo Arti Fumetto Friuli”

Before COVID-19 began to spread across the world, Welch and Modern Foreign Languages faculty member Stefania Bertolini-Puckett traveled to Pordenone, Italy, to participate in an Italian-to-English translation project for a new comics museum, Palazzo Arti Fumetto Friuli (PAFF).

While abroad, they worked with renowned comics artist Giulio De Vita, art director of the museum, to create an English version of the museum’s website. Though much has changed in the country recently, Welch recalls the joy and beauty of her time in northeast Italy. She also sends prayers to everyone affected in Italy and the world.

“I am astonished at just how quickly the world has changed from being in Italy at the beginning of this year to now,” Welch says. “It’s mind-boggling to think about and watching the crisis evolve on the news has stolen my words. Yet watching the citizens of Italy’s perseverance throughout this pandemic has lifted my spirits and seeing their actions of community and optimism makes me think that we can get through this as long as we remain together while apart. I have kept Italy (let alone the world) in my prayers. I hope that we can surpass the current situation and that those infected/affected can know peace and good health soon.”

My Favorite Moments

“My favorite moments from the experience were most definitely talking with the residents of Pordenone and the workers of PAFF! I was able to practice my Italian language skills and meet some incredibly inspiring individuals who not only expanded my worldview but have shown me what can be possible in the professional world.”

‘A Deeper Understanding’

“The lessons that I learned from my experience in Italy are priceless. I was able to experience Italian day-to-day life, staying in an apartment and working daily, even running domestic errands. When in classes here at OWU, I feel like I learned a great deal about Italian life and society, yet being able to actually see it, feel it, hear, touch, and smell it has created a deeper understanding than any book could provide.

“I was forced to use the Italian I have been studying for the past four years to engage in conversations and to conduct my interviews in Italian. This gave me a better appreciation of those working hard to learn a new language and to live in a country that does not share one’s native tongue.”

“From my interviews with PAFF workers/graphic artists Giulio De Vita and Emanuele Barison, I was able to obtain information of the industry of graphic art/comics/illustration and publishing, as well as starting a nonprofit, which are all areas of interest for my future career after graduation. …

“Experiences like the one I was fortunate to have spark inspiration for our futures. They allow students to branch out of their comfort zones and discover not only themselves, but also what their futures could be.”

Why I Chose Ohio Wesleyan

“Ohio Wesleyan felt like home as soon as I arrived for the initial tour. I loved everything that I heard and saw, the programs were exactly what I was looking for, and the travel opportunities were the icing on the cake.”

My Plans After Graduation

“After graduation I plan to work for a year in publishing, after which I will attend graduate school to earn a master’s degree so that I can inspire and help students much like my professors have done for me. All the while I plan to work on my writing and my art so that I can hopefully publish my own work!”