Class Rings

The Class of 1911 was the first at Virginia Tech to have a Class ring. However the Class Ring Tradition truly began in 1912 when the Class of 1914 chose a student committee to design a Class ring which would be unique and meaningful to Class members. Today, Virginia Tech is one of only a few colleges and universities that maintains a class ring tradition. Two major traditions combine to make the Virginia Tech Ring Program unique: the design and the presentation of the rings. Virginia Tech introduces an entirely new collection of designs for each class. Each year, the Sophomore class selects a Ring Committee responsible for designing their class ring collection. Each collection includes certain elements: the screaming eagle, American flag, campus buildings, and an interlocking chain around the bezel. The screaming eagle evolved from a pair of twin eagles used on the first Virginia Tech ring, symbolizing the twin virtues of strength and freedom. The American flag and campus buildings serve to recognize both the heritage of our country and Virginia Tech. The chain represents the strength of many united as one. From there, the Ring Committee designs a class ring representing the unique characteristics of their respective class. The Committee must also name their collection, usually in honor of an outstanding Virginia Tech graduate. For example, the Class of 2002 named their collection after Homer Hickam, Jr., award winning author of October Sky. The Class of 2000 chose to honor Colonel Harry Downing Temple '34, an unofficial historian for Virginia Tech and a member of his class's Ring Committee - one of the orginals.During each class's junior year, at the Annual Ring Premiere, the Collection is unveiled and class-members can order their rings. The rings are not delivered until the week of Ring Dance, held in the spring of the class's junior year. A display case in the Williamsburg Room, Squires Student Center, contains Virginia Tech class rings since 1921. The display was dedicated during the 1991 and 1986 class reunion in November of 1996.