The emergence of Spanish language AWS training material and user groups is contributing to a thriving Hispanic community
Did you know that Spanish is the second most popular language on Earth? Spanish is spoken by about 560 million people worldwide — with over 57 million native speakers in the United States.
Everyday, millions of individuals struggle with a language barrier in the workplace. When I started to explore AWS in-depth while working for Intel in 2011 and Rackspace in 2014, all of the technical content was exclusively in English — there was almost no material available in other languages.
For many of us who’ve learned a second language, the translation process begins to occur naturally in our heads. We will hear or read something, and the content is automatically translated. For others, this process doesn’t happen as quickly or easily enough. The difficulties with translation often leads to frustration which impedes the ability to digest material — especially technical content.
In May of 2016, I connected with Ryan Kroonenburg of A Cloud Guru and offered to create the Spanish version of his prep course for the associate-level AWS Solutions Architect certification exam.
After several months of late evenings producing the course in a studio, we launched the Spanish version in October of 2016. Since the launch, more than 2000 students have enrolled. I was encouraged by the response from the community, but realized there was much to be done.
Online Course: Certified Solutions Architect – Associate (Español) — Aprenda sobre los componentes de Amazon Web Services y aprueba la certificación de Arquitecto de Soluciones en Español. — acloud.guru
Growing the AWS Hispanic Community
At re:Invent 2016, I had the pleasure of meeting Jeff Barr, the Chief Evangelist at AWS. During our conversation, I expressed concerns over the difficulty I’d had finding documentation in Spanish. We discussed how the dearth of Spanish language content might prevent those unable to find documentation in their native language from adopting AWS technologies.
Jeff’s reaction was far more magnanimous than I could have imagined. He offered me the opportunity to translate portions of the AWS Blog for inclusion in the nascent Spanish language section of that publication.
Thanks to Jeff’s advocacy and support with this initiative, the Spanish language section of the Blog has really taken off in the past few months.
Connecting the Community on LinkedIn
In March 2017, I started a LinkedIn group, AWS en Español. The group is designed for Spanish speakers interested in sharing news, events, and their experiences related to the AWS ecosystem. The goal is to provide HR recruiters a resource they use on a daily basis in their search for qualified AWS engineers and other technologists.
In the past 15 days, we’ve added more than 350 people — but what has surprised me most is the geographic distribution of the members who make up the group. There are Spanish-speaking people living throughout the world who want to connect with other Spanish speakers to discuss AWS architecture, new technologies, and usage patterns.
Let’s Get Interactive!
To engage the community with the latest content and webinars, a live-broadcast of our monthly AWS en Español meeting will be available via YouTube. As a regular feature of these sessions, leaders in the AWS community will share their experiences and deliver demonstrations to a global audience.
Be sure to subscribe to the channel — no matter where you are, you can join us in real-time!
To engage the community at the local level, I’ve also organized an AWS User Group in Córdoba, Argentina. The meetup group is designed to grow and enable more and more people to interact with local AWS practitioners working with AWS’ cutting edge technologies.
Your Help is Needed!
Although English will remain the lingua franca of the IT world for the foreseeable future, there are many Spanish-speaking technology professionals who need our help — and I can’t do it alone.
As a community, let’s make a concerted effort to push for Spanish language documentation, and work together to ensure our Spanish-only colleagues don’t fall behind due to a lack of native language resources.
Together, let’s level-up the hispanic community!