colleague, co-worker (female) [noun] [het collegaatje, de collegaatjes] [‘ko-lee-gaa-tju’]
"Collegaatje" is the diminutive of "collega", the general word for "colleague" or "co-worker". The strange thing is however, that somehow the diminutive became the informal word for a female colleague. If you talk about a "collegaatje", every Dutch person knows you mean a female colleague. Don’t you just love the subtleties of the Dutch language… 🙂
– "Wie was dat net aan de telefoon?" – "O, een collegaatje."
("Who were you talking to on the phone?" – "Oh, a co-worker." Literally: "Who was that just now on the phone?")
– "Schat, ik ben vanavond wat later thuis, ik ga wat drinken met een collegaatje."
("Honey, I’ll be home a little later tonight, I’m going out for a drink with a co-worker." To avoid marital problems, some men might prefer to use the general "collega" 😉 )
– "Komende maand krijgen we een nieuw collegaatje erbij, ik hoop dat ze een beetje verstand van zaken heeft!"
("Next month a new colleague will arrive, I hope she is knowledgeable!" Literally: "The coming month we’ll get a new colleague in addition, I hope she has a bit of knowledge of things/business!")
– "Collega": colleague, co-worker.
– "Kamergenoot": office mate. This is also used in the translation of roommate (dorms).
– "Stagiair / stagiaire (fem.)": intern, trainee.