Campus housekeeper celebrates 25 years at LU


Lena Kirchner | Reporter
Dec. 27, 2016; 1:30 p.m.

Beth Walt
Beth Walters

Elisabeth Ann Walter will soon begin her 25th year working as a cleaning lady at Lindenwood University.

“That is a long time,” she said. “I have seen lots of changes throughout the years.”

When Walter arrives at the J. Scheidegger Center for the Arts at 7 a.m., she starts cleaning the classrooms. She then moves on to cleaning the bathrooms. The sinks, toilets and floors shine and the mirrors gleam after Walter is finished with them.

While she is in the bathroom cleaning, her yellow sign with a comic self-portrait saying “closed for cleaning” stands in the hallway. Later, she dusts and vacuums the hallways.

“I always have a routine,” she said. “In fact, I do the bathrooms three times a day: a second time after lunch and one more time right before I leave, to make sure toilet paper does not run out.”

When Walter leaves work at 4 p.m. and drives back to her home in Moscow Mills, she is usually not done with her day. As a mother of three children and two stepchildren, as well as a grandmother of 15, “there is never a dull moment,” she said.

Walter, who turned 62 on Aug. 9, and her husband Bob have been married 10 years, and she said she really enjoys her large family. Life is much more interesting when something is always going on, she said. The family usually spends the holidays together and cooks different meals.

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“It is like you celebrate Christmas for the whole week,” she said.

What Walter said she enjoys most about her work at Lindenwood are the students and her co-workers; she said she gets along very well with all of them. One of her co-workers, Pam House, described Walter as a hard worker who is very giving and always very friendly.

Walter has been cleaning regularly in 15 different campus buildings over the past 25 years, starting in Roemer and the president’s house, moving on to Young, Harmon, the LUCC and many more, but she has been stationed in the J. Scheidegger Center for the Arts since the building was opened in 2008.

“Down here, it is great.” she said. “Everybody is friendly. They say ‘Hi, Beth,’ and they are very pleasant.”

During her time at Lindenwood, Walter said she has supervised about 200 student workers and has kept in touch with some of them. She still gets invitations to weddings, and baby showers and receives regular calls on how she is doing.

She also said that she always looks forward to the summer when the campus facilities workers clean the dorms all together in order to get them ready for students to move in. Even though the work is hard, you see progress, she said. The work is done in teams, and Walter said they all have fun during work.

When she is not working, Walter likes to cook and create crafts. She builds baskets and fills them with her self-made candy for holidays and family weddings, which she said “everyone in my family is always looking forward to.”