People from many different countries live, study and work in Eindhoven. Every week, Innovation Origins has a talk with an international about what brought them here and what life is like in Eindhoven.

Name: José Luis López
Country of origin: Mexico
Work: Customer support EUV at ASML

For the story of José, we had one window of opportunity to interview and photograph him. The last couple of weeks he was in South Korea for work and the day after the interview he travels to his family in Mexico for the holidays. So here we are at eight o’clock in the morning at De Restauratie with coffee, ready to hear what José has to tell. “I came here with a Mexican scholarship for my master in Physics at the Eindhoven Technical University. I had the choice to go to any place in the world and I chose Eindhoven because  I saw that this town is doing well. I also checked out what the work and life conditions in different countries were like. In the Netherlands, people get a lot of days off and it is also valued to have your own spear time to enjoy. I can tell: that is absolutely not the case in a lot of countries.”

After José graduated at the university he decided to stay in the Netherlands. “During my final year, I was already looking around for jobs. I got the choice to do a PhD at university and ASML had a good job offer. I wanted to gain work experience, work with different people and travel. All of that was in the job at ASML. I work for the company for one year now. I like working with different people, I also experienced that when I studied. In the university, you meet all kinds of people with a bright future ahead, but they are all a bit the same. It is a bubble. To break out the bubble I started working at a nice restaurant. That’s where I met a lot of different people from all walks of life. My mom had a restaurant in Mexico where I used to help, so I had some experience. At the restaurant in Eindhoven, I was most in my element on the busy Friday nights.”

(Story continues after photo)

José is a troubleshooter for the new state of the art EUV (Extreme UltraViolet) machine of ASML. “At customer support, we work in teams, one in the United States, one in Taiwan and my team in the Netherlands. This way we can offer support 24 hours a day. I think it is incredible what ASML accomplished. This machine is a revolution in our market. I took a lot of research and time to develop it. It offers our customers even more performance every day. My team makes sure the production doesn’t have to deal with interruptions or at least as little as possible, because when the production stops, that costs our customers a lot of money.”

“In my spare time, I love to do sports and yoga. I also started with photography. I learned with the help of the internet, books and a lot of practice. I am now learning how to edit, but that is very difficult. I love to photograph nature.” On asked if he also intends to learn Dutch, José smiles: “Yeah, I need to understand Dutch, also to understand the jokes at work and so on, but I still didn’t take the time to learn it. I can understand it a bit, and I think I can learn it really fast. My social life is quite international and I also know a lot of Mexicans here. And you know, when there is a party and the Mexicans are invited, the party always becomes a Latin party with a lot of salsa dancing.”

José tells us that one thing in Eindhoven bothers him a lot: the housing situation. “I have had the opportunity to have lunch with Peter Wennink, the CEO of ASML, and I told him my concerns about housing too. Certainly, when you are on your own like me, it is very difficult to buy a house here. The university and companies who make an effort to attract people to come to Eindhoven should also share that it is difficult to find a house at the moment. I really hope it gets better in the future with all the new building projects in the city.”

Photography: Diewke van den Heuvel
Read more stories of internationals here.

 

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About the author

Author profile picture Sabine te Braake is a writer and an entrepreneur. She loves Eindhoven, the city where she once started as a student.