is what stands out for Karen

In this segment of our light-hearted, get-to-know-each-other feature, eish! speaks to Karen Visser who, after two decades on the Mahikeng Campus, is moving to the Vanderbijlpark Campus.

Karen Visser tells us more about herself, her career and her plans for the future.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

The proverbial “before and after” picture of young children entering at first-year level and a number of years later becoming successful individuals making a significant difference in the industry and our country.


How did you end up becoming a lecturer?

At the University of Johannesburg one evening, my boss was running late for his class and asked if I could stand in for him. I literally phoned my mom straight after the class and said: “I know what I want to do.”


I have never looked back and have never done another job. I absolutely love what I do and cannot even imagine pursuing any other career.


What career did you want to pursue as a child?

My dad thought I was smart and envisaged me an engineer or something. I am the youngest of four daughters and my sisters are dedicated, hard-working people. I most likely just hoped that I would not end up unemployed.


What or who motivates you?

I am a firm believer in Maslow’s reference to “self-actualisation”. I absolutely love it when I do surprisingly well in something that seemed impossible.  Success breeds success!


What makes you happy?

My two German Shepherds make me smile. The absolute unconditional love and support from my extended family makes me feel blessed, and my amazing friends make me feel as if I am worth it. It sounds corny, I know.


What are you most passionate about?

Abuse of animals, women and children and bullying. Nothing else makes me throw my name away and get involved.


What is your favourite travel destination and why?

I don’t like flying, so nothing overseas. My favourite holiday destination is The Palace and Cascades Hotel at Sun City.


My guilty pleasure is social gambling. I cannot afford anything more, so Sun City offers that, as well as a spa, golf and endless eats and socials, all on the doorstep of the Pilanesberg game reserve.


Where do you see yourself in the next few years?

To my shame, my PhD is not completed and for the sake of everyone who is so kind and supportive, that has to be a priority. I also pray to God that I can make the move to Vanderbijlpark Campus a successful one and establish an academic department of note and excellence.



Karin with her mother and sisters. They are from left Ingrid Human, Karin, her mother, Marianne Kriek, and Delie Kriek.


eish! thanks Karen for her hard work and dedication over the years. We look forward to the success she will be at the Vanderbijlpark Campus. In our next segment, we will feature a colleague from the Potchefstroom Campus.

Her task there will be to establish a programme similar to the highly successful Transport Economics and Logistics Management programme she started in Mahikeng in 2003.


eish! asked Karen to describe herself in three words... click on the icons to see her answer.