Virtual Graduation Hoda

TODAY Show anchor and Virginia Tech alum Hoda Kotb holds up her Hokie hat during a virtual message of encouragement to the Class of 2020, May 15, 2020. 

Sophomore communication science and social inquiry student Ashley Brinkley was featured on NBC’s “Today with Hoda & Jenna” on Monday, Oct. 26.

Brinkley represented the university on the show’s new segment, “Dorm Room Dual,” where college students are invited to play minute-to-win-it games.

After submitting an online application to appear on the popular show starring Virginia Tech alumna Hoda Kotb and co-host Jenna Bush Hager in the summer, Brinkley eventually received a phone call from an NBC producer over fall break and jumped on the opportunity to be involved.

“When I first (sent in the application), I thought there’d be a good chance I’d be picked because Hoda went (to Virginia Tech),” Brinkley said. “I was probably most excited about talking with Hoda and Jenna, even if it was for a quick second … I was really excited, but nervous to be on national, live TV.”

While on-air, Kotb asked Brinkley about campus morale in the pandemic, and Brinkley didn’t shy away, saying, “(Hokie pride) is still in full swing. Even though we’re not fully on campus this year, the school spirit is still crazy. Hokie pride is always insane.”

Brinkley faced off with Chris Wang, a sophomore at the University of Texas at Austin, in a game of “Super Spoons,” where the students had to balance ping pong balls on spoons without using their hands and move as many balls from one bowl to another as they could in 60 seconds.

Wang edged Brinkley 23-21, but both students received one-year Amazon Prime student memberships for participating.

“I won in my heart — that’s all that matters, and it was cool to talk to Hoda and Jenna,” Brinkley said. “It was so much fun.”

Recommended Stories