Other Side Drive

Voices of Texas State: Victoria Tsatenawa

todayOctober 8, 2015 5

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Malik Mingo
Other Side Drive Segment Producer

voices of texas state

This week on “Voices of Texas State,” I have one of my good friends, Victoria Tsatenawa! She is a double major is psychology and Spanish and she is a senior! It’s your last year at Texas State! Victoria!, how are we doing?

V: “I’m doing good!”

As I already said , this is “Voices of Texas State “ where each week I highlight a different voice from a Texas State student so that listeners can hear your voice and your perspective! Last week I had student body president, Lauren Stotler and this week, I would like to highlight someone who is handicapped! Victoria Tsatenawa is a handicapped student here at Texas State and we are going to get to know her! Hear her voice right here!

First what I want to know is a little more about you! Were you born with a condition that has made you need to use a wheelchair or did someone hit you or something?! Tell us a little more about that.

V: “I was born with a condition called congenital myosinic syndrome. It’s a weakness in the muscles and I did not need a wheelchair at first but it kind of progressed into me eventually needing one.”

As I said earlier, you are one of my really good friends and sometimes you do walk. Does your condition allow you to do a little walking, making you not all the way bound to a wheelchair.

V: “That is right. As I said it kind of progressed. It was a weakness in the muscles and like depending on the day, my muscles are stronger than other times, but I cannot walk long distances which is why I have to use a wheelchair most of the time.”

Texas State University is a large and hilly campus! There are many days when I am out of breath, I can’t do anything, I can’t do anything. What I want to know is, Is there any struggles with being handicapped on this campus or are there no struggles at all?

V: “It depends on how you look at it.” There are some positive things and there are some negative things. For me, since I use a electric wheelchair so it is easier for me because there are ramps. I did have to push myself around campus at one point and that was pretty tough but the only thing I can think of is when people get in the way of the areas where only handicapped people can get through. Like the ramps. the ramps are in awkward places to begin with and like elevators they get packed and it’s like dude yal can walk!.”

So you definitely get frustrated with people using those designated areas needed to be used by you all.

V: “Sometimes yes! we also have class as well and like other students we have class back to back and if elevators get super packed and we only have five minutes to get to class, and we have to wait for people to use that as well, we end up being compromised and suffer and come and be late for class.”

Totally, I am definitely one of those people that will tell you that you can catch me on the elevator all the time .your right! a lot of people who need those elevators are being compromised by people who don’t need them.

As you said you have positives like saying that you are in a electric wheelchair. My question to you is there any more struggles you may face? Do people look at you differently then others?

V: “People do look at you differently but I also feel like people give you stares if you look different period. I have already gotten use to that I understand that is just human nature to stare at something you are not used to seeing. And I’m OK with that.”

I agree! Now, before we wrap up the conversation we are having, is there something that you would like to let Texas State students know, so that I know and our listeners know to make you all feel as comfortable as possible and as cool as possible. Making sure that we are not stepping in the way of things that are meant to you all?

V: “I don’t know. I feel like Texas State as a whole does a pretty good job. Everyone is pretty cool so I do not see any changes. Because I feel like Texas State does really well at understanding diverse groups of people. “

Now, I have heard that some people would like more ramps on campus. Do you think that is something that the university should look into? Or do you think there already is enough.

V:” I feel like I am already use to knowing where all the ramps are already. What I would tell people is to make ramps not so much in hidden areas.  Some of the places are in sketchy areas and I remember it was trouble finding them at first so I spent most of my first week finding where everything was at for a handicapped person.”

Well I want to thank my friend Victoria Tsatenawa for sitting down with me today! As I said before, she is a Texas State student here at Texas State so if you see someone rolling around being all cool that is definitely her. Say hi to her because she is very cool I can definitely say that.

That’s all for this edition of “Voices of Texas State.” I am your host Malik Mingo and join me next week for a new voice! If you would like to be featured on Voices of Texas State, go ahead and shoot me an email at mmm259@txstate.edu and who knows, maybe you all can be my next voice of Texas State!

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