Today, Virginia Tech is launching a student contest, "True Life: I'm a Hokie," for videos to be posted on YouTube.

“We’re really looking forward to seeing what our students come up with,” said Randy Stith, director of visual and broadcast communications in University Relations. “There’s more to the term ‘Hokie’ than just being a sports fan. Our students are what make Virginia Tech a special place, and seeing them express themselves through video will be exciting.”

The purpose of the contest is to create excitement among the student body by giving them the opportunity to summarize, in video format, their personal perspective as to what it is to be a Hokie, meanwhile tying in a promotion to build awareness of the university’s YouTube site, www.youtube.com/virginiatech. Current students from all campuses, including graduate students, are invited to participate.

The contest runs from Sept. 28 through Nov. 8, 2008, at midnight, the deadline for submissions. Each video may not exceed two minutes in length and must be entered through the Virginia Tech YouTube site.

A panel of judges selected by the Virginia Tech Office of University Relations will include alumnus Tim Leaton, an award-winning short filmmaker and production assistant for Tropic Thunder, and Susan Mattingly, executive director of the Lyric Theatre. Cash prizes for winners are $500 for first place, $250 for second place, and $100 for third place.

In addition, the winning video will be played during a preview slot at the Lyric Theatre in downtown Blacksburg and the winner’s name will be announced during the Virginia Tech versus University of Virginia home football game on Nov. 29. Students interested in the contest should visit the Virginia Tech You Tube channel.