Class Notes


Sandy Bass

Sandy Bass '12 with "The Price Is Right" host Drew Carey

"Come on down!"

So you want to be on a game show and chase the prospect of winning a boatload of cash or some other spectacular prize?

Chosen to "come on down" during the March 30 episode of "The Price Is Right," Sandy Bass (marketing management '12, theatre arts and cinema '12) offered a few pointers.

Because you'll have to complete paperwork and answer screening questions, Bass, a creative account coordinator at a social media studio in Los Angeles, suggested that you "go with a group, be yourself, and have fun. … I'm sure that the brief screening has something to do with who's selected."

Ever the Hokie, Bass, who ended up winning a designer jewelry set, added: "Oh, and if you have the opportunity to … be on TV, smile, enjoy the moment, and throw the 'VT' sign to the camera to show off your Hokie pride."

Oct 7, 2011: The "My Virginia Tech" video series aims to give an inside look at Virginia Tech through the words and experiences of students, faculty, and staff. In this video, meet Sandy, a super-involved double major in marketing management and theatre arts and cinema.


Virginia Tech's old tennis courts

55 years ago,

construction began on Cassell Coliseum. Although the coliseum did not open until 1964, it was first used for a men's basketball game versus the University of Alabama in 1962.

80 years ago,

the "Quadrangle," now known as the Upper Quad, had tennis courts—and bonfires during pep rallies.

90 years ago,

female students created their own yearbook, The Tin Horn, because male students refused to allow females in The Bugle. The 1925 and 1929 issues of The Tin Horn were published by hand.

By Kim Bassler, communications coordinator for University Libraries. Images are courtesy of the libraries' Special Collections; many more can be found at


Ginna Kelly

Leap of faith

"I took a leap of faith. I thought: What do I really love? Mountaineering and conservation. This is what I'm most passionate about. The world needs it. I went for it and never looked back."

Ginna Kelly (environmental policy and planning, political science '03) left her secure job as a lawyer to found Climb for Conservation, a nonprofit organization that uses mountain-climbs to raise money for conservation of some of the world's most-endangered animals. Kelly (pictured above, at far right) held her first climb in 2012, inviting 14 women to climb Tanzania's Mount Kilimanjaro to raise more than $32,000 to support the critically endangered African black rhinoceros. Since then, Kelly has organized climbs of Machu Picchu in Peru, Gran Paradiso in Italy, and Chimborazo in Ecuador, as well as another trek up Mount Kilimanjaro. Still ahead in 2015 are scheduled climbs up Machu Picchu, Aconcagua, and Kilimanjaro.

Grade: A

"While starting a nonprofit was a lot of work and stressful, it has been incredibly rewarding. Garnering support from the community and watching the puppies grow and learn provides motivation to continue working every day to place them with their future children, whose lives they will forever change."

Laura Sanders O'Kane (clothing and textiles '00), Narberth, Pa., is executive director of Paws and Affection, a nonprofit organization she founded with her husband, Chad 0'Kane (M.A. communication '11), to train service dogs for kids with mobility-related disabilities. She gave the organization's first year high marks.


"At the start of my career, I had not fully comprehended the importance of developing meaningful and mutually beneficial relationships. Now, I mentor young professionals. My advice is simple: Network and be visible, inside and outside of your industry and comfort zone. I'm an engineer with an M.B.A., but my involvement in the arts community has paid huge dividends. Set out to contribute and make a difference in your community."

Antonio Muñiz-Olán (electrical engineering '91), Orlando, Florida, founded Muñiz & Associates, a consulting firm helping business owners understand health care access and affordability. The entrepreneur was named by the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando as one of the 25 Influential Hispanics of Central Florida.

Class Notes