"A few minutes with" is
a lighter look at a student who has been in the news.
Victor is the manager of The
which offers free live music, films and televised sporting events
during the academic year on the lower level of the Student Center.
books entertainment for the campus, but she is a star in her own
right. Her documentary "Sailors First" has aired on the
FOX Sports Net channel and Bay Area television stations and continues
to air nationwide.
The film, which tells the inspiring story of a group of sailors with
disabilities, won "Best of Festival" at 2003's Berkeley
Video and Film Festival and this spring led to a prestigious scholarship
at the 34th annual Northern California Area Emmy Awards. Victor earned
a bachelor's degree from the Broadcast and Electronic Communication
Arts (BECA) Department in 2004 and begins the master's program this
Describe a perfect day:
Receiving a phone call at 9 a.m. that I've won a prestigious award
[the Peter J. Marino Television Production Scholarship from The
National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.] … And
then being able to go back to bed!
Why did you choose SFSU?
The reputation of the BECA program. It's
well-respected. I had a rock 'n' roll career for 13 years and played
around the world [lead guitar with a number of bands including AC/DShe,
an all-girl AC/DC tribute band]. But I thought it was time to learn
something else -- something that comes with a 401K, retirement, health
insurance -- grown-up stuff.
What was the inspiration for your award-winning documentary?
I wanted sailing lessons and was walking along The Embarcadero when I met these
guys. One was blind, the other a quadriplegic. They needed able-bodied people
to go sailing with them. I wanted to see how they did it. Other people had
approached them to do documentaries but always with a big sigh like it's
a sad, sad story. It's not. My mother is disabled so I think they could see
I understood. Those guys taught me that it's not what happened to you in
your life but how you deal with it. When you have a passion for something,
nothing will stop you. These are people who can't get out of their beds on
their own in the morning yet they go sailing!
I'll use one from the sailors: "You can be dealt a lousy hand
and still come out a winner."
Favorite SFSU faculty members:
Miriam Smith -- she's so funny and delivers the information in a really
interesting way. She's been very supportive. And Michelle Wolf. Her
energy is phenomenal -- I want to be her when I grow up. And Dr.
Hewitt, the documentary teacher. I call him my "Doc Dad" because
he was so supportive.
What was your first job?
During high school [Henry M. Gunn High School in Palo Alto] I had a
drive-time radio show on KFJC, an alternative radio station funded
through Foothill College. I was too young to see the bands [in local
clubs], but I could interview them. I got to interview some interesting
ones: "The Damned" and "Love and Rockets." I
wasn't even 18. The look on their faces was [an incredulous] "you're going to interview us?"
Who are your heroes?
I'm making a documentary on behalf of a group called And Castro For
All. It's a Human Rights group that was brought in when a bar in
the Castro was accused of [racial discrimination]. Heroes to me are
people who on a Saturday night spend their money and time fighting
on behalf of justice for others.
What other projects are you working on?
I'll be doing a documentary with [SFSU alumnus and broadcaster] Fred
Inglis at Channel 2 on disabled hockey players who skate on
And a documentary on cloggers who travel around the world going to
cultural festivals representing the USA. Miriam Smith is executive
What are your long-term goals?
Making documentaries, teaching at the college level and getting a Ph.D.
at UCLA or USC. I'm interested in media literacy, media activism
and the study of aesthetics.
Name a guilty pleasure of yours.
Watching TV talk shows like "Montel," "Oprah" and
dare I say it, "Jerry Springer." That's a pretty guilty pleasure
for a media student. I guess I just outed myself.
What person, dead or living, would you most like to meet?
[Albert] Einstein. I think it would be fun to talk to him. And Richard
Branson [the founder and chairman of the Virgin Group].
If you could change one thing about SFSU, what would it be?
There's not enough sense of community. People say State is a commuter
school but there are a lot of people living on campus in the dorms
and close by in the city. I try to [foster a sense of community]
by offering lots of different types of bands, comedy night and films
at the Depot.
What is the toughest thing about being you?
There are too many things that I want to do all at once.