Careers 2 Communities

Career Spotlight: IT Manager, Nemecio Chaves

Interested in Mathematics and Computer Science? Learn more from Nemecio Chaves, an IT Manager!

Nemecio Chaves, from Las Cruces, New Mexico, is an IT Manager at White Sands Missile Range in White Sands, New Mexico. Before working at White Sands Missile Range, he worked for Hughes Aircraft, IBM, Sandia National Labs, New Mexico State University, and Donya Ana Community College.

Chaves enjoyed mathematics and physics in high school, that is what inspired him to pursue a degree in Mathematics and Computer Science from New Mexico State University. This degree helps prepare students for positions involving the ‘design, construction and application of computer systems’ ( The undergraduate degree program at NMSU includes a Bachelor of Science, a Bachelor of Arts, and four minor degrees. The B.S. degree includes the traditional computer science degree program while the B.A. is a more open and flexible degree that is easier to combine with other disciplines. The choices of minors in the program are algorithm theory, bioinformatics, computer systems, and software development. (NMSU)

Chaves works as an IT Manager for White Sands Missile Range as well as a first-line manager. This means that he has a group of people under him that are performing tasks that he is responsible for. A lot of the work that he does, and the most complicated part is that he is responsible for supporting their workforce. He must constantly think of the future and how technology will fit into that said future. He helps the workforce under him understand the technology that they’re using and make sure that they are doing their job effectively. There are times when they must do a task they don’t want to do, and he must continue to motivate them to get beyond it. He is also a bridge between the workforce and the higher-ups. He must show the higher-ups the future technology and how it could help them into the future – up to five years.

A normal workday for Chaves starts anywhere from 6:30 to 7:30 in the morning. He starts working on anything that is a high priority and balance each job. He must decide what tasks are a high priority and which ones aren’t as high priority.

Learning for IT Managers and Computer Programmers is a lifelong process. You must get a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree, as well as many different certifications. Chaves encourages people and his workers to not give up on learning. If they are wanting to get better and get to a higher position, they must not give up on learning. There will be times when they are uncomfortable with what they’re doing or learning, but they must get through it. When you’re thinking about going further in your career and education, think about what it takes and what you’ll need.

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