I got an interview

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    I got an interview for a Janitor position. It is for an alternative, but he said that all the altervatives got to go last year. I’m excited I hope I get it….What do the janitors do there? Anything I should know for the interview as to what questions he might ask me? Thanks!


    We need more alternative janitors.  Never did like the regular ones…  🙂
    As a janitor, you’ll be working for Housing, and responsible for sweeping, cleaning, restocking, lifting, croching, and catching naps in closets (just kidding – don’t do the last one if you want to stay the whole season).
    Vermin control has been high on the agenda for the last few years.  Unfortunately, you’re not allowed to kill the little guys, because it’s against the Antarctic Treaty.  They’re trapped live, then kept alive till the ship can take them away at the end of the season.  New Zealand doesn’t want them, so they’ll stay on the ship till it docks in Washington state, where they’ll be given to exterminators to deal with.
    I’m sure someone that’s actually in that department would be better to answer your question.  I only know what I hear through the grapevine.
    I’ll keep my fingers crossed that you get to come down.  Seems like there’s always someone dropping out at the last minute, or not PQing.
    Good luck.


    Vermin control????
    What the heck is that? I never heard of it. Seriously, I have heard of rodents and spiders coming in on the ship, but with no water they die off pretty quick. This is a dry place and other than a few weeks in the summer when the snow melts on the road, there is no liquid water to found outside the taps.
    We did have an outbreak of fruit flies one year. A bunch of soda cans froze and burst in one of the food warehouses. An errant  fruitfly or two or three got things started and with plenty of sugar water from the busted soda cans they thrived.
    The janitor job is a good one. In spite of the fact that they are among the lowest paid jobs, we regularly get janitors asking to come back. You almost never see that in a DA job. Janitors work round the clock so you may find yourself on night shift. It’s basically the same as days but a little less hectic and some say more pleasant. Janitors often have days off in the middle of the week. In the summer this allows you to get out sometimes with the science groups. Something few of the rest of us get to do.
    The janitor job is exactly what you would expect it to be. Cleaning sweeping mopping shampooing trash removal etc etc. You get to be an independant worker in that you are assigned a group of building to clean and you are your own boss getting it done. It’s one of the things janitors like.
    I think if it wasn’t for the pay, a lot of people would come back. Even being a janitor, you will probably find your bank account growing much faster than it ever did.
    Marxha, If you are reading this, chime in.

    Baghdad Jim

    TheNomad…did they give you a location…or ..well, I guess an alt would be on the list for anywhere.
    Atlas, you cant kill them?  As in rodents?  thats actually pretty interesting.  I was thinking of how cool it would be if I could get a rat down there–domesticated rats would make excellent confined area pets.
    If you cant kill them, then some lucky individual gets to feed the thing all season?


    I think he is pulling your leg, Jim.

    Baghdad Jim

    ahhh..i c


    Mike —
    Are you saying that I’m telling falsehoods to a FNG?  You know that goes against the OAE Code…


    Janitors work, for the most part, the regular town schedule of 7:30-5:30pm, except about three or 4 people who work night shift (10pm-8am) all season. Day shifters get the opportunity of doing Sunday Run (garbage take out in dorms, cleaning the bars & coffee shop, usually about 4-5 hours) and then getting another day during the week off (where you can do fun things that are not available on Sundays.)

    There is a staff meeting each morning from 7:30 to 8am ish where your supervisor determines schedules and special projects for the day.

    Each janitor is assigned a dorm to clean (toilets, trash, halls, vaccuming, lounges, etc) sometimes two, and one or two work buildings on a daily basis. Once the season settles you get the one dorm/workspace every day for the rest of the season.

    You have an amazing supervisor–returning (I’m pretty sure) for her third season–Amanda. The fella who hired you won’t have much supervisory stuff to do with you on a daily basis. Largely because of her being so cool, you will have a good season.

    It can be a difficult repetitve job, with repetitive motion injuries and occasional issues with the chemicals (your hands will be red & raw at some point in the season, even with gloves) you have to use.

    Janitors have a lot of alone time and freedom within their days to do the tasks they have set for them, you get outdoors on a regular basis, and get out to the runways (to clean the toilets) pretty often too. Amanda advocates for her crew to get them on boondoggles.

    Last season we pulled in every damn Janitor alt we had, even some midway through the season, so your chances are very good of coming down.

    Hope this helped.

    Good luck,

    P.S. Hope you don’t mind my jumping in like this, Mike. How’s your winter?

    Atlas…How was China?


    St. Genevieve —
    So good to hear from you!  I can’t remember if you gave me your e-dress at the end of last season, or if you said not to ever contact you. 
    Regardless, you were in my thoughts when little Baby Suri was born.  Such a beautiful baby, born to two of the greatest people ever.  We’ll have to talk about it when next I see you (if the restraining order has been lifted).
    China, dearheart, was like a whole ‘nuther country.  Glad I did it, but don’t really have to do it again.  Much, too much, to put down here.  Suffice to say, I lost about 15 lbs. in three weeks, and had a bad-ass bout with altitude sickness in Lhasa.
    Currently in MO, working on my condo.  Going back south in August for a 12-month contract.  Yippee.  Stupid AND greedy.
    Hope you’re doing well.  What are you up to?  Coming back?  Housing wouldn’t be the same without you.


    hi all, “marxha” here! I like that version of my name Mike…did you know that my name spelled backwards is….”ashram”..

    anyway, enough of that silliness: being a janitor on the Ice is the best job there is. I’m not exaggerating. I wanted to come back my second year as one & didnt care at all about the pay being low. But I came back in supply, which is also a great dept to work for.

    the freedom aspect of the job, and the comraderie of the janitor team is extraordinary… I had one dorm & two work areas….rocked out on my i-pod when I was cleaning, got my first ever arm muscles, and just got to run around so much as my buildngs were spreaq out over town. Best of all, you have breaks in the galley with homemade goodies. I was amazed that there was never really anything gross that I had to clean. The only thing Mike wrote that i never did was “shampooing”….

    just make sure you have really comfortable shoes for that job as our on your feet a lot!

    good luck!

    G: enjoyed our talk marathon today so much! Don’t even remember that drive from Austin to Houston!



    thanks everyone for all the info that helps a lot…and gives me an idea of how to prepare for my interview in the morning! i really really hope i get this.


    Genevieve and Marsha, thanks for helping out. I knew there was a good reason janitors like to go back.
    Atlas, I forgot about the trip to China. You’ll have to fill me in later in the season.
    I can’t wait to see everyone again. Like long lost friends. I’ll see a couple of you at winfly, but I’m leaving pdq. Best to meet up in October. I should be on first flight.


    Atlas dear,

    Not housing. No no no no. Cannot do an office job again so soon, must get outside. Am currently going through my PQ for Alt Fuelie. My dream job. =) Hope I get to go down, willing to take the chance for that job…if I make it down it’ll be Mainbody.

    You would mention Suri. *gag* Here’s a punch to your arm, hard!

    Looks like Housing will have Jeff Gebauer ex-Janitor photographer extraordinaire (all those magnificent pics on the I: Drive!) in my position. Be nice to him, folks!

    Email me! iceDOTspinnerATgmailDOTcom

    Genevieve (who sainted me?)

    P.S. Marsha…loved taking with you too, made me feel better about a whole lot.


    Hey! I had my phone interview with Mike. Hes a great guy! He told me all about the position and was up front about the good and the bad. He said he’d like to offer me an alternative position pending my references work out which I’m sure they will. Mike also said he came on this board and you guys all helped him out in the beginning with getting a job on the ice.

    Jeff Gebaur~ I know him! We were both at the job fair last year…and we went down to Colorado Springs to see that Park where all the rock formations are. Last that I talked to him he said he was offered a position. How is he doing now? Ya he takes great pictures.

    Have a good one all and hope to see you all down there,
    Jeff Seidel



    I think anyone networking on this site has a big advantage on securing a position…it’s just all so positive & helpful…I just kept the intention in my mind that I WAS going down & acted as if it were true & I did get a job… (sounds new-agey I know, but it worked!)…

    If anyone wants to write me off list my e-mail address is:


    (Mike: I’ve tried to change my e-mail on the personal information screen & can’t do it)

    G: it’s obvious to ME why you were sainted…’nuff said…

    Atlas: you are hilarious. I try not to know of celebrity spawn (being somewhat of an anti-breeder), but it is difficult in this country not to be assualted by Absolute Nonsense About People We Don’t Care About (and who are about as interesting as a box of hair)…that’s one of the things that is so refreshing on the Ice: you can spend your entire time having no notion of what’s gong on “in the world”……

    work, eat, sleep…. the occasional fistfight….ahhh, can’t wait to get back to it!


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