Interview with the president, first lady


What was college like for you?

Noel: “I went to college in the same town where my parents were. I graduated from Blacksburg High School, Blacksburg, Va., and went to Virginia Tech. It would be similar to students from Manhattan High going to K-State. I spent a lot of time studying for my electrical engineering undergraduate degree.”

Kirk: “I enjoyed college a great deal, and I was very involved on campus – perhaps too involved – both at Old Dominion University (3 years) and Virginia Tech (2 years undergraduate + 5 years graduate).”

How much did you study compared to how much you partied?

Noel: “I was not a partier. I studied way more than I partied. Kirk and I took off Friday night and Saturdays most weeks but studied the rest of the week.”

Kirk: “I was not much of a partier in college, but then again, engineering students spend most of their off-hours doing homework.”

What school traditions did you partake in?

Noel: “We enjoyed singing the ‘Virginia Tech Alma Mater’ and doing the ‘Hokey Pokey’ during athletic events.”

Kirk: “We attended almost every home football game for seven years, and as many men’s basketball games as we could.  At that time, Virginia Tech played in the Metro Conference, and was very competitive.  We also enjoyed homecoming and other festivities in Blacksburg which were part of community traditions.”

What clubs were you involved in?

Noel: “I was active in the Baptist Student Union, Tau Beta Pi (engineering honor society), Eta Kappa Nu (ECE honor society) and IEEE.”

KIrk: “Mostly the Baptist Student Union and intramural sports.”

Are you a Mac or a PC?

Noel: “I am a PC person. I was in the first class of engineers at Virginia Tech who were required to purchase a PC.”

Kirk: “For the past 10 years … Mac. Currently … PC.”

Left or right handed?

Noel: “Right-handed.”

Kirk: “Right.”

Any tatoos?

Noel: “No, just pierced ears.”

Kirk: “Not that I know of.”

Walmart or Target?

Noel: “Target. We’ve been to the first Target in St. Paul, Minn.”

Kirk: “Target.”

What’s the most important thing you learned in college outside of the classroom?

Noel: “I spent two summers in Detroit working for General Motors after my sophomore and junior years. This experience helped me learn more about classroom knowledge versus real-work challenges. I also had a chance to do more than just study and enjoy activities outside school more.”

Kirk: “I learned a lot about the value of communication on campus, the huge impact a great university administrator could make and how important it was to foster good faculty-student relationships.”

Did you go on any road trips or concerts in college? Where and what bands?

Noel: “We went to see Sandi Patti play in concert one time. Most of our road trips were to visit Kirk’s family since mine lived in town. We also took a road trip to Charlotte, NC to see the Charlotte Hornets in their first season of pro basketball.”

Kirk: “I saw Barry Manilow in concert twice … how is that for hard-to-find facts? [I also] saw the Beach Boys several times and went on a mission trip with the Baptist Student Union to Kentucky to work on housing projects.”

President Schulz, boxers or briefs?

“I like the combo ones – kind of a little of both – I am not sure what they are called.”

What was your favorite distraction from studies?

Noel: “We really like to go to movies or rent movies when we weren’t studying. We also enjoyed going to athletic events.”

Kirk: “Going to Noel’s parents house on the weekend to watch TV including classic shows like “The Love Boat” and “The A-Team” and getting meals that I didn’t have to pay for.”

Where are your seats at Snyder Family Stadium?

Noel: “Our seats are on the second level boxes on the west side of the stadium around the 40 yard line. We’ll spend time there as well as around the boxes on the west and east sides of the stadium. We’ll probably sneak into the student section for at least one game.”

Kirk: “In Prez box.”

If they made a movie about you, who would play you?

Noel: “Some folks say I look like Margot Kidder (when I had long hair) or Demi Moore. The actress who plays Hermoine would work as well.”

Kirk: “Matt Damon.”

What bad habits does your significant other have?

Noel: “1) He unplugs items while they are on (like the waffle iron causing sparks). 2) Likes to buy expensive dress clothes 3) Likes electronic toys and purchases them frequently 4) He sometimes leaves the toilet seat up.”

Kirk: “None that would be appropriate to publish. She likes to make piles of paper … everywhere!”

Favorite TV show?

Noel: “1. ESPN Sportcenter 2. CSI”

Kirk: “ESPN College Game Day (Football) – otherwise ESPN SportsCenter.”

Where do you get your caffeine?

Noel: “I drink hot tea (English Breakfast) in the mornings. I like diet Pepsi and iced tea during the day and will occasionally have coffee.”

Kirk: “Caribou, Starbucks, Blue Stem and Radinas.”

What games do you have on your Blackberry?

Noel: “I just got a new Blackberry here in Kansas and haven’t added many games. I have Brickbreaker, Sudoku, and other standard games. I also have a Nintendo DS and like to play BrainAge 1&2. I also love old video games such as Centipede, Tetris and Asteroids.”

Kirk: “Wordmole is my favorite … otherwise just apps.”

What was your favorite band in college?

Noel: “Phil Collins, Genesis, Billy Joel and ABBA. Now I listen to the Blend on XM. I mostly like music from the 80s and 90s with some more recent songs.”

Kirk: “Not sure I had one in college. I like a lot of the 70s and 80s music now thanks to XM Radio.”

What was your favorite beverage?

Noel: “My favorite non-alcoholic drink is fresh-brewed unsweetened ice tea. My favorite alcoholic drinks are frozen margaritas, and Baileys on ice or with coffee.”

Kirk: “Root beer.”

How did you meet your significant other? What did you do on dates?

Noel: “Kirk and I met through the Virginia Tech Baptist Student Union when he was a junior and I was a freshman. We met the summer before school started but were both dating others. During spring break, we went on a mission trip to help with housing repairs for low-income folks in eastern Kentucky and then started dating after that. Most of the time during the week, we hung out together and studied engineering. On weekends we liked to watch movies, hike the nearby Appalachian Trail and attend Virginia Tech sporting events.”

Kirk: “I guess answering ‘I don’t remember’ would get me in trouble in the president’s house. We met at a volleyball game at the Baptist Student Union during the summer. On dates: we went to the movies, went hiking, went to Virginia Tech football games.”

How much did a movie ticket cost?

Noel: “I think movies were less than $5”

Kirk: “Not a lot … probably $2.50 or so.”