People from many different countries live, study and work in Eindhoven. Every week, E52 has a talk with an international about what brought them here and what life is like in Eindhoven.
Name: Justina Segers
Country of Origin: Lithuania
Work: Compliance and Contract Manager at Fluke
Waiting in het hallway for Justina to arrive, we notice a worldmap on the wall. On the map are marked all the work locations of Fluke ànd all the countries of origin of the employees. And that are a lot of countries! Enough candidates for this series, we would say. Justina arrives and takes us with her to her office. On the way there she introduces us to some of her colleagues. Only the IT guy is Dutch, so far. “This one of reasons why I love working here, so many nationalities.”
“I studied Law in Lithuania and did a Masters Law and Technology at Tilburg university. My husband Guido is Dutch. In 2012 we met during an exchange program in Leuven. After I finished my Bachelor in Law it was time to decided what our next step would be. I always wanted to study abroad, so choosing The Netherlands was an easy one. Last year we got married in Lithuania. We had a set of rites in nature during our Pagan wedding (pre-Christan beliefs and practices). I love being in nature so much. I notice lots of people here go into nature with a purpose: hiking, jogging or cycling. I just want to take in nature. Now I combine that with cycling to work, or we go to the Ardennes in Belgium. Luckily Eindhoven is green thanks to all the parks.”
“Eindhoven changed so much in five years. There is also a lot more information in English available now.”Justina Segers, Compliance and Contract Manager
“In the beginning, when I just lived here, it was namely connecting with other internationals. Most of the Dutch don’t actively seek interaction with internationals. If a foreigner crosses their path it’s fine, they don’t feel the necessity to really get to know them. The Dutch are still open and friendly though. But also the internationals tent to do no big effort to meet up with Dutch people. I have a natural interest to know more about where I live. I wanted to know more about the history of Eindhoven, but only could find books in Dutch. So I read those. Very slowly, but I learned a lot about this city. Now I can surprise people with historic facts about their own city,” she smiles, “Eindhoven changed so much in five years. There is also a lot more information in English available now.”
“We have a very active live. One of my hobbies is photography. Guido and I attend lots of concerts to report about them for Eindhoven RockCity. He writes about the concerts and I photograph them. And then specifically local music.” Colleague Grant from Great Britain walks in, asking about a meeting. Justina shares her office with a Polish colleague, next door is a co-worker from Bulgaria. Justina will join the meeting a bit later. She continues her story: “You need to leave the house, you can go to Van Moll, events at Ketelhuisplein, Stroomhuisje, Effenaar, Dynamo. It doesn’t take a lot of your time, and you can be home on time and go to work the next day. A lot of our friends do the same thing, and they are Dutch and internationals. In june the Emoves festival is in Eindhoven. It is an urban culture festival with music, dance, art and sports. Last year I really enjoyed the sports show on Piazza, in the middle of the city center. In Eindhoven you can do something every day and night. You just have search a bit and go out of your home.”
Read all the internationals stories here.
Photography: Diewke van den Heuvel