Please allow me to introduce myself… I wouldn’t necessarily describe myself as a man of wealth and taste, but I have been around a long long year on the internet.
My life in a nutshell:
School, more school, more school, more school, university, and then just shy of ten years at Netpoint, an internet service provider in the broadest sense of the word, where I’ve been a designer, programmer, account manager, project manager and general manager.
Netpoint itself has moved from being a trade name to an independent company to becoming the Belgian branch of a Dutch company that’s part of a multinational holding, and I’ve decided to move on.
I sat down some time ago and wrote down exactly where I wanted to go with my professional life, and when I reread the job description I’d written I realised there wasn’t a snowball’s chance in hell of ever finding a job like that.
And then Bruno & Tessa (and Laurens & Cynne) came over and Bruno told me he’d seen a job opening he thought I might be interested in. At the College of Europe.
Now, some history: I know the College. I’ve known the College ever since the early eighties, when my father applied for the job of Head Librarian. The whole family stressed out as he went through selection after selection and interview after interview. He ended up as one of two final candidates, and the entire family was on tenterhooks for what seemed like an eternity.
I’ll never forget how he came bounding up the stairs to my brother’s room where the two of us were playing, and how absolutely happy he looked as he stood in the doorway and announced that he’d got the job.
The next few years were a journey of discovery, both for him and for us.
In a way, and now I think about it, if it hadn’t been for the College I may never have become as involved with computers as I have now. My father started working at the College right at the start of the PC revolution, and him evaluating PCs for the library (Tandy 1000s for the grunts, later Tandy 4000s! with 120/75 baud modems!) lead to us learning about PCs. When he was working with databases at the College I learned all about dBase. When the College switched to WordPerfect I got to know WordPerfect inside and out. When the College published it’s first DTP’d newsletters I was happy to lend a voluntary hand with PageMaker.
I’ve worked at the college before: holiday jobs, putting magnetic strips in books, and moving books and magazines from the attic of old library to the (then) new library building.
But anyway—back to the dream job description I’d dreamed up for myself. I compared it with the job description and with what I knew of the College, and I swear it was a perfect match. International environment? Check. Web site(s)? Check. Lots of complex data? Check. Both team work and individual responsibilities? Check. Non-profit or public sector? Check. Databases? Check. Multidisciplinarity? Check.
And at the same time the profile was a pretty good match with mine too… so not without trepidation I sent in a CV and the required critique of the current College website.
Fast forward a couple of weeks, hey presto! I’m the College’s new webmaster.
And I can’t begin to say how much I’m looking forward to it.