A biweekly publication for faculty and staff

Cheerful Custodian Keeps Campus Sparkling

January 22, 2014

Known for his friendly personality and big smile, Senior Custodian Guillermo Rivas has been beautifying the UC Merced campus for eight years. He goes the extra mile to ensure the campus is clean and safe, creating an optimum environment for learning and research.

It takes a special person to clean up after others and Rivas fits the bill perfectly. Rivas’ friendly demeanor is contagious. From the moment you see his sparkling grin across the way, you can’t help but to return a smile and ask how his day is going.

He has always enjoyed serving others and takes pride in making sure the campus is in top shape to greet the campus community and guests.

Before joining the Facilities Management team, Rivas was a cook at two different local restaurants. He has lived in Merced for 27 years. He and his wife, Matilde, have a teenage son and daughter.

Please describe your job and what it entails.

My priority is to maintain a clean environment for the students, staff and faculty. I keep the restrooms clean and stocked so everyone can use them. I respond to emergencies like spilled liquids or foods. I help out wherever I am needed.

What are some of the most rewarding things about your job?

The most rewarding part of my job is the appreciation I get from students and faculty members. The fact that they take the time to say thank you assures me they are happy with my work. Everyone I come in contact with is friendly, which makes it easy to do what I do.

What are you looking forward to in the year ahead?

I will continue to do my best to keep the campus clean and organized, and to learn new things every day to make a difference and become a better person. Most importantly, I want to be a role model and motivation to my kids.

Tell us something about you that people on campus might not know.

Something that people at UC Merced might not know is that I have a second job to help provide for my family. I am a cook at Paul's Place Restaurant on weekends. I enjoy meeting new people and seeing many friendly UC Merced faces there.