A pineapple to remember

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A conversation with Ottavia Carlon

Sweet, kind and ironic. Her passion for languages and organizing events is what brought her to the CMCC where – between one drawing and another – she helps Martina in the management of the Venice CMCC premises, offering a smile to whoever passes by. Get to know Elena Niero, manager’s assistant and events’ organizer at [email protected]’Foscari.

What’s your job at the CMCC Foundation?
I am Martina Marian’s assistant. I collaborate in the management of the CMCC premises in Venice ([email protected]’Foscari) and the events in this area. I also deal with the operations of researchers at the ECIP and RAAS divisions.

What led you to the CMCC?
In my previous job as a tour operator, I was giving quotations all day and not feeling very satisfied as the work was too mechanic and repetitive for me; having a linguistic background, my professional goal has always been that of merging languages with event organization. I had been looking for a job for a couple of months when I saw the CMCC vacancy. I immediately felt it could be interesting, and now I’m happy because I can finally exploit both my linguistic and organizational competencies managing international events.

Is your current job the one you had dreamed of when you were a child?
Actually, no. When I was a child, I used to dream about being a hotel manager. I was fascinated by the tidiness and cleanliness reigning in the hotels I visited during my holidays, and the staff’s efficient looks. However, growing up I realized that the hotel manager role involves many responsibilities, but not so many concrete duties. Here at CMCC, in turn, I am in the middle of things: I never get bored…

Could you tell us the most important moment in your career life at CMCC?
Right after the end of a recent event for the European project EUCP, for which I curated the logistics and organization, I was called by the project coordinators who wanted to personally thank me for the job I had done. I remember this moment with great pleasure, because it was the first event I dealt with entirely on my own since arriving at the CMCC and I was a little worried that something could go wrong.

What’s on your workstation?
Colourful markers are a must, especially the blue ones: I have a true passion for this colour. Then, I have something rather unusual on my desk: a small pineapple action figure made in rubber. This is because my boyfriend Steve, who is English, loves pineapple pizza. Since he ordered it at the restaurant the first night we went out, I keep the figure there as a memento: this must never happen again…

How do you travel to work?
I go by train. It is comfortable, does not take long and allows me to arrive early and avoid traffic. Moreover, I like to stroll from my house to the train station in Mogliano in the mornings.

What do you do in your spare time?
I love watching movies: I go to the cinema at least twice a month. The only films I don’t like much are those that are too “polished” or intellectual: I need something relaxing and fun to spend my free time in serenity. I have also been subscribed to the Best Movie magazine since I was at University – I was very interested in dubbing. I can name almost all the Italian dubbers!

Is there any other activity you like to do after work?
I also love literature; I am a fan of the Harry Potter saga, but my favourite authors are Arthur Conan Doyle e Jane Austen: Pride and Prejudice is my favourite book. However, whenever I can I like to do more active and manual tasks: I like the do-it-yourself, renewing old furniture, drawing and colouring. This last activity is a form of relaxation therapy for me: I have many anti-stress colouring books, one of which actually based on my favourite book.

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