Spotlight - Katina Paredes, Mail Clerk

When were you hired at The University of Texas at Austin?


katina paredes

Which department did you originally begin serving within?

I’ve always worked for Mail Services. On occasion I’d help out in the Copy Centers when necessary, but my job title has always been related to mail.

Do you deliver and retrieve the mail on the UT campus, or do you assist in the sorting process at the warehouse?

I partake in the sorting, handling process of the mail at the main warehouse. When mail comes in from campus, state departments, outside sources, or USPS — when we are hired to do a job for someone — my coworkers and I assemble and address the mail, or we sort it out and make preparations for proper delivery. We also handle things like the video jet machine (inkjet addressing), inserting the mail, and collating all incoming and outgoing mail.

Interesting! Before your time at Document Solutions, where were you employed?

I worked at All Star Copy and Printing. And I also was employed at Austex.

What compelled you or brought you to come work for UT?

Well, I met Hamon Barlow, one of the supervisors in Mail Services, while working in another mail-related position. At the time he was working here at UT and I was not, but he is the one who encouraged me to apply. And here I am.

Is there anything you love most about your job?

I enjoy working in customer service. I really like my coworkers so that is a huge part of it as working with friends is really nice on a daily account. Most of all, I just love learning new things. Believe it or not, but there is always something new to learn in mail, and I love to learn. Something is always changing with the times and with the advances in technology and so I am always absorbing new ideas and gaining new skills.

Are you originally from Austin or were you born elsewhere?

I am an Austin native.

Being a born and bred Austinite, what do you appreciate most about this city?

That’s hard to say because there are so many things I adore about this city. I’ve watched it grow and change so much over the years… It’s a very different atmosphere from when I was a kid due to all the development and increase in population, but Austin is still very much the same at heart… I guess I’d have to say I really love sightseeing. All the parks and trails and lakes and rivers are very beautiful to me, especially Town Lake. And there is always something new to see or experience… Oh, and I have to say I am really fond of going out to see movies. Honestly, as much as I love coming into town: I spend most of my time at sports events for my kids, which I really love to do.

How many children do you have?

I have three girls; ages 7, 9, and 11.

What sports do they play?

They play softball, soccer, and volleyball.

Speaking of sports, do you have a favorite sport or most favored team?

Yes, I love baseball and the Texas Rangers are my favorite.

Glad to hear that! So, I assume by all the time you spend at sports events that you are heavily involved with your daughters’ recreational events?

Yes, I really want to be a part of my children’s development and I want my presence to be very prevalent in their lives. By being there and being active in their lives – by supporting their interest, talents, and dreams – I hope to lead them in the right direction so they can have a strong, promising future… My husband and I spend a lot of time at Met’s Recreation working at the girls’ games and practices. We do a great deal of volunteer work. And this year I will be on the PTA Board as well. Education is also very important to our family.

Do you hope your girls will attend UT?

Yes I would love it if they attended school here. UT is an amazing University and they would get a great educational experience here… My husband and I will support whatever they choose, but it would be nice to have them close to home. Either way we teach our girls that in order to obtain goals and great opportunities that they must invest a lot time, dedication, and hard work. We are definitely avid believers of the ‘work hard, play hard’ motto.

It’s very sweet to hear such devotion and commitment to one’s children… How long have you two been married?

I have been married happily for 12 years.

Congratulations! Looking back, did you ever foresee yourself married with children?

Not really… I mean, I was almost 30 before I had children. However, I cannot imagine my life any other way as I feel very accomplished and my life feels very fulfilled with my husband and three wonderful girls.

Out of total curiosity, what do you and your family like to cook and eat at home?

To be honest, I don’t really cook very much. My husband is the better cook between the two of us as he can throw a meal together very fast that is homemade and delicious. We all love to eat his foods. He grew up in a very large family and he can cook the most amazing Mexican and Hispanic dishes, so that is what we primarily consume.

My mother’s side of the family was fully Latino so I understand how important food is to family and fellowship. It really is so much more than consuming for sake of living… O.K. so my last question is this: if there is anything you could do in the next year or two with your family, what would that be?

Let me think… Well, I’d really love to take my girls to a UT Football game. They would absolutely love it and I know it would be a very memorable experience for us all.

Interviewer: Nicolette Mallow