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"I made my hobby my profession"

Karin Van Emelen manages the Greenery on Campus Drie Eiken.

“There are seven of us in the Greenery and I'm the only woman. Sometimes people ask me if this bothers me but it really doesn't. In the past I worked for a municipal greenery department. At the time my male colleagues had difficulty accepting the fact that I was a woman. They thought that women were incapable of doing this job. This has never been a problem here at the university.”
 
“We meet every morning. I make sure that everyone knows what's on the schedule for the day and has a clearly defined task. I try to take everyone's preferences into account as much as possible. Some people prefer not to operate a chainsaw, while others like it. My task is to keep an eye on all the chores and maintenance jobs which need doing on campus. But I also work myself. I couldn't bear it if I didn't.”
 
 “I really love nature and there are quite a lot of wild animals on campus.  We have hares, beech martens, bats, all kinds of birds and in the last couple of years a fox has made our campus his new home. I like working with my hands and being outdoors. At home I'm always working in our garden too. So it's fair to say that I made my hobby my profession. I'm not the type to spend the whole day sitting at a desk.”

Karin Van Emelen