Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
The Post - Athens, OH
The independent newspaper covering campus and community since 1911.
The Post
A mop bucket and mop sit inside the Schoonover lobby, Oct. 11, 2023.

Hero of the halls: Donna Wolfe

Ohio University employs a large custodial staff that is in charge of making the campus a clean environment for students to learn and live. They are responsible for cleaning the many buildings on campus. Donna Wolfe is just one of those employees. 

According to Facilities Management and Safety, Custodial Services is a three-shift operation that covers over 4,000,000 gross square feet. 

Wolfe has worked for the university for 22 years and has had many responsibilities. She has worked in classrooms, dining and residential halls.

Wolfe has been a residential life custodian in Voigt Hall for three years now. Voigt houses the Women’s Leadership Learning Experience and is an all-female dorm. It is located on North Green next to Hudson Health Center.

Of all the places she has worked, she liked cleaning in the classrooms the most but values the connections that she can develop with students while working in resident halls.

Wolfe’s work day typically starts at 7 a.m. when she clocks in, then she makes her way to Voigt and usually arrives in the building by 7:30 a.m.

“Sometimes we have meetings and things in the morning, we find out if anything is going on or if we have to cover other areas,” she said.

Once arriving at Voigt, Wolfe begins cleaning the lobby and other common areas like the kitchen. Then around 9 a.m., she is able to move on to the bathrooms.

“We deep clean and sanitize the bathrooms every day,” Wolfe said.

She is also responsible for vacuuming the hallways and mopping the stairwell. Wolfe spreads out these tasks throughout the week to make sure they are done correctly. 

“We rotate things around because, of course, you can't do everything every day,” she said.

Wolfe has very high standards in terms of the cleanliness of her building and takes great pride in keeping a clean environment for the students in her building.

“I'm very particular about the way my building looks and the way things are,” she said. “I try to give (the students) a clean, healthy environment to live in.”

Her connection with the students in her building is also an important part of her job. She said she believes that having that relationship with her students leads them to have more respect for her and what she does.

“I get pretty close and I think that helps,” she said. “Having a good relationship with your kids, I think that they respect you more.”

Wolfe said she believes that personality is a very important aspect of this job. A custodian’s personality affects their interaction with the students and their demeanor at work.

“I think it all depends on your personality, and how approachable you are, on how close you get with the students,” she said.

Though she enjoys her job and the connections she forms with the students in her building there are also frustrating aspects that she has to deal with. Wolfe thinks one of the hardest things is the destruction that occurs in the building.

“(In) this job, we do the same thing day after day, we come in and we clean the bathrooms and clean up areas,” Wolfe said. “I feel like when there's a lot of destruction in the building, you just kind of feel let down.”

Every custodian deserves appreciation for keeping OU a clean environment for the students to enjoy.

“This job is what you make of it, and it can be tough if you want it to be,” said Wolfe.


Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2016-2024 The Post, Athens OH