Get to Know Housing Staff: Tish Duffey

Portrait of Tish DuffeyWhat is your name and how long have you been in your current position?

My name is Tish Duffey. I’ve been in my position for over 22 years.

What is your current role in University Housing?

I am an Upholsterer after transitioning from what was called a seamstress when I accidentally saw an ad in the job section of the Sunday paper and I thought, “I can do that!” and applied.

What do you do on a typical day in your job?

I typically fix and repair whatever furniture has been damaged. I love the variety and challenge each day brings, and no two days are the same. I enjoy working with my hands and using tools and machines. The custodians know their buildings best and we try to get around and see what’s up in their area, and how things are going and check in with the supervisors.

What’s your favorite thing about working with students who are living on campus?

The students drive my work load and I enjoy meeting them and sharing their stories and ambitions; it is such an exciting time in their lives with so many decisions, experiences, and so much work to do.

What is a past work accomplishment that you’re proud of?

I was able to work in the summers and pay my way through when I was in college; they can no longer do that as I realized when I had 15 years of kids of my own in college.

What is a secret talent that your co-workers may not know about?

If I have any secret talents, it might be cooking and baking. My family ran restaurants in the Platteville, WI area and it is what we do together. I did agility training with my dog, and I hope my dog-less life isn’t permanent so I can do it again. After COVID, I hope to resume teaching a variety of exercise classes with my friends.

Where is your favorite place in the world?

That’s a tough choice. I lived in Alaska for a while and I’d like to get back to Tongass National Forest again and fish for some salmon in the Pacific Ocean. Also, my family has lived in Florida for 50+ years and I love Caladesi Island State Park on the gulf side of the state.

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