Boilers of Dining – Walt Johnson

Get ready for a fun interview with Walter Johnson, or Walt as he likes being called. He’s a Level 6 Cook at Wiley Dining Court making some delicious food for all of us to dig into!

Where are you from Walt?

I’ve actually lived in Lafayette, Indiana my entire life.

That’s so cool! We’re glad you decided to come work at Purdue. What made you decided to work at Wiley?

I use to work at the dining court in Tarkington and as it was closing, I was offered a job and recommended to work at Wiley which was just built. I had hoped to to work at Wiley as I saw how nice it was when it was being built so it was a great opportunity for me to take and I’ve been working here ever since.

How long is that exactly?

Wiley opened in 2008 so its been about 11 years. I had started off in the dish room before I asked to become a cook. My family comes from a long line of cooks so I decided to give it a shot.

You told us that you were a Level 6 Cook, what does that mean?

It means I can cook in the front with fire.

Follow up question, what is your favorite thing to make at Wiley?

Omelets, I love to make breakfast foods. 

What about your favorite food Wiley serves?

Man that’s hard. Probably our Pork Loin. It’s made rotisserie style and is absolutely delicious.

We’ll have to try it out then! Since you’ve worked at Wiley for so long, what is your favorite aspect of Purdue Dining Courts?

Talking to the students. I really enjoy talking to everyone and I see our students here as a bright future. 

Well thank you for cooking such amazing food for our students. Outside of work, do you have any hobbies?

I spend a lot of time hanging out with my two grand-daughters. I will do anything they want to do.

Sounds like a fun time! Now that fall has arrived, what are you most excited for?

The change of the leaves. I really like going to parks and see the leaves change color.

On the topic of fall, anything exciting happening at the dining courts for Halloween?

We have some special things planned for Halloween including all the cooks dressing up!

That will be amazing! Let’s get out of you way to cook after this question, if you could have one wish, what would it be?

Hmm. I would wish to have come to Purdue sooner then I did. I would like to have 10 more years at Purdue. 


We hope you can stay even longer than that Walt. Thank you so much for sitting down and talking to us and all the great food you make to feed our University !

Alright Boilermakers, if you enjoyed reading this interview with Walt as much as we enjoyed interviewing him, keep an eye out for him when you go to Wiley! All our cooks and staff in the dining courts have amazing stories to tell so make sure to talk to them and thank them for the amazing job that they do!

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