Faustregel Fairness: der Weg in die Unabhängigkeit

We chatted with architect Vera and music lover Nik – two people who have turned their passions into a career.

Vera Gloor, 54, architect

Vera Gloor is an architect known throughout Switzerland. But she originally wanted to become an actor, and so she went to Göteborg after middle school to study drama. “In Göteborg I had to write a paper on dance, and found myself focusing on the dance space itself, on the architecture – I found it fascinating. One morning as I was sitting in bed, I said to my husband ‘let’s pack up my things. I want to go back to Zurich to study architecture at the ETH.’ My studies there were intense, I worked day and night.”

Following her studies, Vera went to work in Berlin before having her first child. “That was when I got an opportunity to refurbish an apartment building in Zurich. Before I knew it, I had a key role in urban development and had to recruit employees!” Since then Vera has redeveloped several old houses in Zurich. She has developed an interest in the concept of “inhabitation,” more specifically, how the people in the apartments actually inhabit the space. “Even today, occupiers are still the focus of all our projects: their desires, dreams, and their everyday lives.”

Niklaus Riegg, 39, manager of Jazz, Rock, Pop

Niklaus Riegg’s career path was also somewhat unconventional. Today he is the manager of Jazz, Rock, Pop in Zurich: a music lover’s dream job. But as a teenager, Nik was still quite indecisive about his career. “I wasn’t ready for an apprenticeship after secondary school and wanted more time to decide what I wanted to do,” he says. He eventually attended a cantonal preparatory college in St. Gallen and began working part-time in a record store: “That’s when I realized my passion for music would become my career.”

It took several years to transition from record store employee to dream job, but that didn’t stop his love for music growing stronger in the meantime. After joining Swiss daily “20 Minutes” as an intern, Nik became the newspaper’s entertainment manager. He also penned music reviews for the paper. He would later oversee the artwork for the Blue Balls Festival, an annual festival held in Lucerne, Switzerland, before making Zurich his home. Nik gives young people the following career advice: “Believe in the unlikely and pursue your passions!” Vera Gloor also notes, “don’t follow a pre-existing pattern! All ideas are good, even the ones you have to discard later on.”

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