Wendy Norton, a cashier for Bon Appétit Management Co., sets up pastry and dessert trays before the breakfast and lunch crowd.
Q: Wendy, how many years have you worked at Wesleyan?
A: I’ve worked at Wesleyan 10-and-a-half years. I started at WesShop and worked there two years. I’ve also worked at Summerfields, a half year at MoConn and a half year the Davenport Campus Center in food prep. I’ve worked here at Usdan in The Martketplace since it opened two years ago. Summerfields had a very homey atmosphere, but the best part about working here in Usdan is that I get to meet more students.
Q: What hours do you work?
A: I’m here 7 a.m. until 3 p.m. Monday through Friday during the academic year, and I work some nights when we cater events. In the morning, I help set up pastries. Breakfast opens at 8 a.m. and ends at 10:30 a.m. Then I help set up desserts for lunch. Our bakers, Mike and Dennis, make amazing desserts. They make everything fresh the night before.
Q: Why do you like coming to work every day?
A: I like to see the students. They make me happy with their smiling faces and big hugs.
Q: Do you get to know the students on an individual basis?
A: Yes. I enjoy getting to know them. I learn about their classes, their families and where they are from. And now, because of Facebook, I can keep in touch with them easier after they graduate.
Q: Speaking of, there is a “Wes Loves Wendy” fan club on Facebook, 103-members strong.
A: That’s what I’ve heard.
Q: What do meals cost in The Marketplace?
A: Breakfast is $5.50, lunch is $7.99 and dinner is $9.25. It’s all buffet style and students can use their meal plans or pay with “points.”
Q: Do you eat any meals here at the Marketplace?
A: Yes. I loved the baked goods, the pizza and the Mongolian grill. That’s also a favorite of the students.
Q: Do you attend any Wesleyan related events?
A: Yes. If a student asks me to attend their dance recital or sports event, I will go. I’ve been to many football, baseball and lacrosse games. I love going to the games to support the Wesleyan Cardinals. I also love the a cappella and choir groups here, like the Wesleyan Spirits, New Group and Quasimodal.
Q: Where are you from and where do you live now?
A: I was born in Greenwich and grew up in Cos Cob, Conn. Now I live in Durham with my husband, Ken, and my three children, Amanda, 18, and twin sons, Jay and Brandon, 16. The boys keep me very busy. I’m always driving them to track meets, baseball and basketball games. Amanda also works for Bon Appétit
Q: You were recently honored as a 2009 Morgenstern-Clarren Social Justice Employee Prize winner, created in memory of Peter Morgenstern-Clarren ’03 who pursued social justice while a student at Wesleyan. How did that make you feel?
A: I couldn’t believe it. I felt so honored.
Q: What are your hobbies?
A: I enjoy cake decorating, taking pictures and gardening. Well, I shouldn’t say gardening. I don’t have a green thumb at all. But I’m pretty good at pulling weeds.