Nicolas Drogou

ISIT 1995, Singapour

28/04/2019

Asia Pacific Security Practice Head

« I have always been in roles that are a bridge between people who do not understand each other, or who struggle to understand topics I was in charge of developing. »  Témoignage de Nicolas, diplômé 1995, concentré de talents multilingues et interculturels…

Avant l’ISIT ?

  • As I was exploring options after passing my French equivalent of A-Levels, or Baccalauréat, I was attracted by the dual training in international law that ISIT offered in collaboration with the university of Sceaux near Paris. I passed the entrance exam shortly after passing my A-Levels majoring in economics.
  • However, I rapidly realized that international law was not that compelling after all, and chose to continue 100% in the translation & interpretation areas with a focus on French, English and Spanish. Being a cross-over between people who could not understand each other was a potent driving force.

Pourquoi l’ISIT ?

  • The first thing that struck me was the academic spirit I found in ISIT which was a welcome reminder of most of my school days spent in various international institutions. Educated in English and abroad until the age of 12, landing back in a French system turned out to be somewhat of a culture shock, however paradoxical that may be for a French. The academic “groove” I found with most teachers brought me to more familiar and better adapted ways of learning that I was happy to embrace after the marathon that represents passing the Baccalauréat.
  • The breadth of topics we studied equally constituted a fantastic opportunity to open up to numerous areas not expected of a translation curriculum, geopolitics being my favorite with an iconic professor.

Les atouts de votre formation ?

I just completed the 20-years anniversary of my professional journey, all of which spent working exclusively on international projects with a flurry of nationalities, cultures and accents. ISIT not only provided a very comprehensive language tool-set, but more importantly the ability to remain curious & open-minded, to research and continuously learn. The fact we touched on so many different topics ranging from economics, geo-politics, science & general knowledge has given me the ability & continued desire to keep an open mind on our rapidly moving world.  

Après l’ISIT ?

  • Whilst never working as a translator or interpreter, I have nevertheless always been in roles that are a bridge between people who do not understand each other, or who struggle to understand topics I was in charge of developing.
  • More out of opportunity than anything, I landed in a Telecoms company that eventually became the behemoth known as Orange. I carried out different roles, always with an international focus ranging from customer service management, product management and more recently business development.
  • The foundation to adapt, learn I received from ISIT has enabled me to work in complex environments related to networks, application performance management and now cyber security. Sprinkling all that with very different cultures where East meets West, North meets South.

Des conseils pour les étudiants/futurs étudiants ?

  • I am always amazed by the number of fellow ISIT graduates that actually work in very different areas, sometimes quite far from the wider world of translation. My word of advice is do not be shy!
  • Professionals with the ability to communicate efficiently in different languages supported by strong cultural awareness, robust written and communication skills are paramount to any organization willing to go global. The academics is one thing, but the desire to reach out, learn and receive from others are just as important, if not more.
  • Nothing is cast in stone and I am certainly here to demonstrate that languages can take you anywhere! It’s not so much the destination, it’s the journey that counts!