Working freely, working accurately

Minerva’s daughters: Veronika Dietl is a technician at our institute

June 28, 2024

Veronika Dietl was born to work in a laboratory, so to speak: Since both her grandfather and her mother pursued scientific careers, this professional perspective was very present for the young woman at a very early age. In this interview, she explains why she likes it so much at the Max Planck Institute für Kohlenforschung.

Veronika Dietl works as a technician in the institute's gas chromatography department. She is primarily responsible for the analytical evaluation of samples from her colleagues in the chemical laboratories.

What brought you here? Tell us about your way to the Kohlenforschung!
Veronika Dietl: I have always had an interest in science. In addition, my mother works as a chemical laboratory technician and my grandfather also worked in a laboratory. Therefore, I was very aware of this career perspective from an early age. After an internship during my school days, it was clear that I wanted to become a chemical laboratory technician. During the application phase, I got to know the MPI für Kohlenforschung. I sent in my documents - and luckily I was accepted.

What do you like about your work?
Veronika: It is great that my work is so wide-ranging and that I can work very freely. There is always something new happening and routine is rare. At the same time, I also enjoy the precise and accurate work here in our analytical department. I think that suits me very well. I also appreciate the fact that we work in such an international environment with colleagues from many different countries. I find that exciting and enriching.

What are your professional goals?
Veronika: I always want to be curious and stay up to day. There are always changes in science that we have to take into account. I also want to continue to enjoy my work in the future.

What was your most difficult step so far?
Veronika: Fortunately, my career path was actually clear very early. However, the four years at technical college, which I attended while working, were very strenuous.

Do you have a role model?
Veronika: I don't really have a specific role model, even though my mother certainly had a big influence on me - and not just as a lab technician. In general, I find people who aim high and show a lot of endurance admirable.

What advice would you give to young girls who are interested in working in a scientific institution?
Veronika: Have confidence and believe in yourself! In addition, it does not always have to be a university degree. If you enjoy science, an apprenticeship and possibly subsequent further training is also a good way to find happiness in your career. Also, don't be put off if you don't have much prior knowledge. The necessary chemical knowledge is taught from scratch.

If you had one wish: What would it be?
Veronika: I would like to see all people treated equally.

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