Alma Fuentes, a Custodial Crew Leader in the Facilities Department at San Diego Mesa
College, has been recognized by the Committee for Diversity Action, Inclusion and
Equity for having October’s “Smile of the Month.”
According to CDAIE Chair Judy Sundayo, the Smile of the Month was created in June
2016 as an informal way to recognize and honor the diversity, depth and humanity of
employees at Mesa College.
“The person who suggested Alma Fuentes to be honored was impressed by her smile, her
readiness to engage and help others and her commitment to her job and the campus as
a whole,” Sundayo said.
Fuentes – who has worked at Mesa College for seven years – said she loves to serve
the students, faculty and staff on campus, and she enjoys seeing people enjoy the
spaces that she takes care of.
“My favorite part is the satisfaction that I feel after giving good service to the
students in regards to helping them out with directions or making the campus safer
if I detect a safety issue, cleaning and having everything sanitized and ready for
the students,” Fuentes said.
Sundayo added that Fuentes’ caring attitude toward the Mesa family was a major factor
for her being honored this month. Her family roots delve into the campus, as her father
Rosalio Fuentes and his “green thumb” worked in the gardens at Mesa College for 28
“I feel very proud of the work and years of service my dad did for Mesa College,”
Fuentes said. “[Gardening] runs in the family – we like to do outdoors things. Where
we live, we have a garden and we always help our dad have fruits and vegetables –
we always grew up around plants and trees.”
In her free time, Fuentes said she spends time with her five children, helping them
out with their homework and having dinner with her family every night to “keep the
sense of togetherness.”
“Family means everything to Alma,” Sundayo said. “Although she has five children and
a wonderful extended family, Alma regards the Mesa campus community as her ‘family’
as well. This is evident in the way she treats everyone with the same great care
and concern she gives to her family.”
Tags: Alma Fuentes, Committee for Diversity Action Inclusion and Equity, CDAIE, Smile of the Month