Pride and Stewardship
ESP Spotlight: Scott Zundel, Jefferson County Education Association
“It’s my job to be better than the rest, and that makes the day for me.” Jimmy Buffett, with lyrics by Mac McAnally
When the brand-new Rigby High School building opened its doors five years ago, no one was more excited and proud than one of those charged with keeping the facility in pristine condition. IEA and JCEA ESP member Scott Zundel had already been working as a custodian in the district for 10 years, but the opportunity to work in the new building re-energized him and reinforced his pride in his occupation.
“I look at it as a customer service profession,” Zundel says. “And I have three sets of customers; students, teachers, and administrators.” He serves those customers every day, starting his shift at 4:00 PM as many people are going home for the day, and working until after midnight to make sure the building is clean from the school day, as well as after-school athletic and fine-arts events.
In any conversation with Zundel about his job, the term stewardship is bound to come up. It is at the center of the obvious pride he takes in his work, and is not something that he takes lightly. “The patrons of our district went out on limb to invest in our students when they passed a bond to build the new high school, and it is up to all of us back up that investment by taking good care of this great facility.”
Zundel also feels strongly that ESPs deserve to be recognized for their contributions to the school and its students. “ESPs are an important part of the education team,” he says. “We are here for the students and teachers when they need us.”
A native of Idaho Falls, Zundel is a staunch follower of the Rigby athletic teams and has a community-minded outlook on life. His wife, Carla, is a 17-year veteran teacher at Harwood Elementary School, where she teaches third grade. “It’s a good, middle class job,” he says of his custodial work. “It makes me happy to know that I’m helping people who appreciate what I do.”