SEHS Faculty Spotlight: Film Teacher Mr. Will Fistek

SEHS Faculty Spotlight: Film Teacher Mr. Will Fistek

Ahmed Elsharkawy '22, Edsman Staffer

Mr. Will Fistek (pictured below) is our new SEHS Film Teacher and resident man of many hats. Outside of St. Edward, he coaches crew/rowing and in the hallowed halls of Eagle High he is continuing to uphold the excellent standard of SEHS Film Studies and is already getting involved with Flight Magazine, our school’s creative arts and literary magazine.

Senior Ahmed Elsharkawy sat down with Mr. Fistek to get some of the inside scoop on SEHS’s new dynamo.

Ahmed Elsharkawy (AE): What courses are you teaching this year?

Mr. Fistek (Mr. F): Digital Cinema 1 & Introduction to Visual Storytelling.

AE: What excites you about joining St. Eds and the film department here?

Mr. F: Definitely the community, from both a teaching perspective and also from a collaborative professional perspective. I’ve had a ton of support, particularly from the Film Department. Another thing that showed me how welcoming everyone would be is when Mr. Stepnowsky, Mr. Kuhar, and Ms. Munnell took me to get coffee and talk at 7 am because that’s the only time I could meet. It just showed me how professional yet relaxed the community is so that also got me really excited to join the community. 

AE: What is your favorite movie?

Mr. F: One of my favorite series is Harry Potter. I’ve always loved the stories and the fantasies of it. I also really like No Country for Old Men and I also like Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing

AE: What is it like coming to teach at St. Eds after going to St. Ignatius for your high school education?

Mr. F: It’s different but the same in a lot of ways. Thinking about the fact that I graduated in 2015 so I’ve been out of Ignatius for 7 years and I’ve heard a lot has changed. There’s a lot of the same camaraderie between the guys at both schools, for the love of the school. St. Eds is also a little outside the city so the location is different.

AE: Are there any memories you have about St. Eds while you were at Ignatius?

Mr. F: The rivalry was huge, both ways. Football week is always huge. Even with any extracurriculars, any time we faced each other it was always huge. Right around the time Eds picked up speed in football and started crushing us, it was really demoralizing. My perspective on the rivalry has changed since I graduated. If I had been asked if I would teach at Eds back as a high school student I would have said no but now my perspective has obviously changed.

Here’s a story about my time rowing at Ignatius. My senior year, the juniors 8, went to nationals and won for St. Eds, so it was annoying for St. Eds to go and win nationals after only being around for 5 years and Ignatius, being around for 25 years, had only placed, maybe once, and rarely got to the grand final. There’s probably 30, 40 teams that qualify and for St Eds, after only starting 5 years ago, to win the grand final stung a little. 

AE: What are some things that you like to do outside of school?

Mr F: I’ve been a rowing coach since I graduated, rowed at Ignatius, rowed at Mercyhurst University, and am currently coaching for Case Western Reserve. I love getting up at 5:30 in the morning and stay active with things like running, rowing, lifting. These activities help keep a calm mind and calm body. I love to take photos if I have some spare time. I like editing. My philosophy is that I believe that anything could be a good picture which also transitions to film seamlessly. 

AE: Did you know any St. Eds teachers while you were at Ignatius?

Mr. F: I knew Mr. Froelich because he helped St. Eds Rowing get really fast when they first started. I remember him being really young and enthusiastic about the sport and just ripped. 

AE: How can St. Eds students help welcome you to the school?

Mr. F: Come visit me. I teach during classes 1, 2, & 5, so if anyone wants to stop by outside of those times to talk about film or photography, and use the cameras or the new Macs, they’re always welcome to come stop by.