Who I am

11006396_812644962142147_4428928084902972185_nMy entire life, language has been one of my passions. As a child you couldn’t keep me away from my books: if you saw me, you also saw a book. At first in Dutch, my mother tongue, and later on in English and even in Latin. And not to forget: the many stories and poems I wrote. It was only logical, then, that I would turn this interest into my profession.

A first step in this direction was the choice of my study programme. At eighteen years old I enrolled at the University of Leuven for a BA in Language and Literature in Latin and English. After three years I added an MA to this, and in the subsequent year, I also completed a specific teacher training programme for languages.

This did not satisfy me, however. You can’t merely study a language on paper, after all, you also have to experience it. And where better to turn your English into practice than in Great Britain? Apart from my many recreational trips to London, I took part in several summer courses in the UK: courses on King Arthur and on the English language at the University of Oxford, a Latin course at the University of Reading and an initiation into Ancient Greek at the University College of London.

I started my career in September 2013 as a teacher of Latin, English and Dutch. In the autumn of 2014 I added an activity as a part-time freelancer to this and ‘Vertalingen Vanhengel’ saw the light of day. After six years I said goodbye to education and moved to Ireland to work as a language analyst for Apple via Globetech, until Covid-19 forced me to go home a bit earlier than I’d expected. In March 2020 I started as a linguist for Stepstone, and in November 2021, after seven years of translating ‘on the side’, I finally took the step and became a full-time freelance translator.

Over the past years, I’ve had to pleasure to work on many translations and proofreading assignments in numerous fields: movie scripts, music education, medieval Latin texts, a book on diabetes, architecture, theology, poems… But 2017 was the real turning point in my career as a translator: I added subtitling to my skillset. Over the years, it has become a real passion of mine, and these days, it is my main focus as a translator.

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