Carlos Nieves, a senior end user analyst in ITS, joined Union in 2008. He is responsible for computer configurations, upgrades, rollouts, imaging, troubleshooting and a host of other support issues across campus that may stymie and stress others but keep him on his tech toes. A native of Patillas, Puerto Rico, Carlos moved to New York City at the age of five and to the Capital Region 15 years ago. He lives in Glenville with his wife, Marella, a retired office assistant to the chief of staff of the Albany Stratton VA Medical Center, and son, Carlos Jr., 26, and daughter, Sarah, 21. They have an Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler mix named Myrrah – named after a video game character that Marella and Carlos Jr. enjoyed playing – and two female calicos, Nala and Simba.
FIRST APP YOU LOOK AT IN THE MORNING: My Gmail and TDX, the work order system
ONE BOOK YOU HAVE READ MULTIPLE TIMES: “One Hundred Years of Solitude” by Colombian author Gabriel Garcia Márquez
BEST ADVICE YOU EVER RECEIVED: In life, take two steps forward in case you have to take one back. That way, you’ll always be one step ahead. A high school teacher shared that with me 35 or 40 years ago, and honestly, I’ve never forgotten it.
FAVORITE SPOT ON CAMPUS: Jackson’s Garden. The sense of calmness and serenity offers a good balance to the daily hustle and bustle of our offices.
GO-TO BREAKFAST: A bagel with cream cheese
NETFLIX OR AMAZON: Netflix. I recently finished watching the comedy-drama, “Atypical.” I’m pretty much open to anything new, including horror films, detective stories and mysteries. I really like programs with subtitles, particularly shows and movies from Argentina, Venezuela and Spain. I’m always interested in comparing Spanish translations from one locale to another. Sometimes the words don’t mean the same thing in different places.
FAVORITE PODCAST: I’ve never gotten into listening to podcasts.
ONE SKILL YOU WISH YOU HAD: Carpentry. There are endless possibilities of what I could do if I were handy. For instance, I love the idea of building a cabin.
BEST PART OF YOUR DAY: There are so many best parts because I like being around other people, helping them in any way I can. There’s tremendous gratification in knowing I’ve made life a little easier for someone who really appreciates it.
LITTLE KNOWN FACT(S) ABOUT YOU: I love cooking and try to advance my skills by watching cooking shows and mimicking what I see. I cook and grill for my whole family all the time – pulled pork, pastelitos (empanadas), pernil (a slow-cooked pork roast), beef stew, chicken stew, arroz con pollo (rice with chicken), pasteles (a traditional Puerto Rican dish made with green banana masa and stewed meat). Also, I love visiting my mother and extended family in Puerto Rico. My mother is 79 and she lives in the same cement house my grandfather bought back in the late 1930s. It’s still standing, though it’s taken a lashing from all the hurricanes. A few years ago, Hurricane Maria took out all the mango, avocado, orange and grapefruit trees. Actually, one small avocado and one mango tree are still standing. That house will be there after everyone is gone.