Isabel Banuelos, who joined CSULB’s Office of Network Services in 2001, was chosen recently by her colleagues as employee of the month.
A member of CSULB’s class of 2000 with a bachelor of science degree in computer science and currently working on a MS of computer science, she was recognized in a special ceremony held on Friendship Walk near the University Student Union which was renamed Isabel Banuelos Lane for the month.
President F. King Alexander applauded Banuelos for her good cheer and positive attitude. “She helps out the whole campus with a smile,” he said.
Banuelos is honored to be named employee of the month and thinks one reason for her recognition is that she is the first voice to speak to CSULB faculty and staff when they have computer problems. “We deal mostly with computer system support issues for DAF (Division of Administration and Finance) as well as overseeing the university’s email,” she said. “When dealing with upset users, I just let them talk and work out their problems. I don’t say anything until they are done and then I ask questions. By the end of the call, people are calmer because I provide solutions.”
The most common problem she faces is the loss of a password. “Sometimes people cannot access their email or they have problems running some type of application,” she said. “Sometimes they get errors and I tap into their computer to see what they see. Whatever happens, I can fix it and people like that, especially if they need something installed right away. I can do that.”
She first chose CSULB in 1996 as a student because it was close to her Downey home. “I came to CSULB from New Mexico State University,” she said. “At NMSU most of the students lived on campus and there were campus activities all the time. Then I came to a commuter campus and missed that activity.”
Banuelos is the mother of two daughters: Xochiquetzal, age 8, and Malinalxochitl, age 1 and a half. “They keep me busy,” she laughed. “Most of my time turns into their time. It is not what I want to do anymore but what my daughters need.”
A good working environment is very important to Banuelos and it is that which drew her back to campus after graduation.
“I started here as a student worker and I loved the people I worked with,” she said. “They were very nice to me as a student and, when I came back, they were even nicer. A good working environment is important to me because I spend most of my days here. Other people may go home mad but I go home happy because I am at peace with my coworkers. If I couldn’t get along with them, how could I get along with an angry caller? Working with nice people makes everything easier.”
The key to success in Network Services is action. “When someone calls, it’s up to me to find a solution to their problem right away,” she said. “Most of my responsibilities involve researching computer problems.”Banuelos received several gifts with her recognition including a CSULB sweatshirt, dinner for two at Domenico’s Italian Restaurant up to $50, two special event buffet tickets to The Hop in Lakewood, four admissions to Laguna Beach’s Festival of the Arts, a $10 gift certificate for Katella Deli and one free Whopper from Burger King.