May 12, 2005
Norma Hostetler, a Food Service
employee at Hesston College for the past 27 years, has retired, effective
May 13. For 25 of those years, she enjoyed baking cinnamon rolls,
dinner rolls, and homemade breads.
Hostetler and her husband Joe moved to Hesston from Alice, Texas, in 1973 so Joe could work half-time in the college's audio-visual department and teach residential building half-time.
Norma worked in the dietary department at Schowalter Villa from 1975-78, then began working in Food Service.
Norma was noon cook for two years. "Then the baker quit to raise a family," she explained, "so I began baking and making desserts."
"At the time, I baked a lot for our family," she said. "That's what I liked to do. Even though it didn't always turn out the way I wanted, I enjoyed baking with yeast."
The students liked the cinnamon rolls and dinner rolls Norma baked, and when she learned they liked homemade breads, she baked them, too, along with cookies. "To hear the compliments from students was nice, like a warm fuzzy," she said.
Norma worked full-time for most of the 27 years, but phased back to part-time the past few years.
"I've really enjoyed my job, and the role I had here," she said. "I especially enjoyed my colleagues in Food Service. We work hard, but have fun together."
"I will miss the people the most," she said. "But I will help occasionally when Food Service caters special meals.
Norma said Joe retired almost two years ago, and she decided it was time for her to retire, too. "I want to spend more time with our two grandchildren," she said. They have three living sons; a daughter Carol died about 20 years ago.
Norma enjoys reading and scrapbooking. She and Joe like to walk and work out at the Hesston Wellness Center. They also have a small vending machine business. They are members of Hesston Mennonite Church.
Bob Nunemacher, who has resigned as Food Director, said Norma will be missed for her talents and friendship. "She brought with her a high level of interest in baking," he said. "Her love for baking came through in the products she produced.
"Norma took pride and care in her work, aiming for the highest level of quality possible," Nunemacher said. "She was also deeply committed to the college and the Food Service department."