TWU student appears on Wheel of Fortune

TWU student, Alexa Hoekstra, competes on Wheel of Fortune

Mar. 31, 2023 — DENTON — Texas Woman’s political science student, Alexa Hoekstra, recently competed on the iconic game show, Wheel of Fortune. The previously-tapped episode will air during college week on Thursday, Apr. 6, and the university is hosting a watch party in the SUHH Bridges Auditorium, 6-7:30 p.m.

While she cannot reveal the results, we caught up with her to find out more about her experience.

Hoekstra said she has been an avid watcher her entire life thanks to her grandmother. One day she saw an advertisement and thought it would be fun to try. She said the process was easy, and it all happened much faster than she anticipated. 

After a series of two interviews within two weeks, she got a callback and was tapping within 10 days. She was able to take one person with her to share the experience—her grandmother who turned 70 this month.

“We flew out on a Wednesday, taped on a Friday and returned to Texas on a Saturday,” said Hoekstra. “We didn’t do a lot of touristy things while we were there since I was a little nervous, and we had to be at the taping by 6 a.m. on Friday.”

After arriving on set, the showrunners explained the rules and went over contracts. They also rehearsed to ensure everyone knew how to spin the wheel and understood how the judges would intervene. 

On that day Hoekstra said they taped a total of six to seven shows. Her episode was the fourth game, which started filming at approximately 1 p.m. Interactions with Pat Sajak and Vanna White were limited pre-game; however, while taping, contestants had fun with the seasoned show hosts who worked hard to make everyone feel comfortable.

“It was a really wonderful experience. Everyone, the makeup team, producers and sound stage people constantly asked if you needed anything, and they were all so nice.” 

Hoekstra said she did get to ask Pat if she could “buy a vowel,” and thinks that Jeopardy might be next on her gameshow contestant bucket list. 


Page last updated 11:36 AM, March 31, 2023