Program Gives Minority College Students Behind-The-Scenes Access DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (March 15, 2007) -- The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) announced plans to continue its at-track diversity mentorship program...
Program Gives Minority College Students Behind-The-Scenes Access
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (March 15, 2007) -- The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) announced plans to continue its at-track diversity mentorship program throughout the 2007 season. The program, which was developed last season, gives two minority college students in nine different race markets an in-depth look at the business side of the NASCAR industry.
"The mentorship program was a great success in its first season, and we look forward to continuing to educate new audiences about NASCAR," said Marcus Jadotte, NASCAR managing director of public affairs, who oversees the diversity department. "The program is a complement to our diversity internship program and offers minority students across the country the opportunity to get a hands-on look at NASCAR and learn about the various elements of the sport."
Two students from Clark Atlanta University will participate in the program at Atlanta Motor Speedway this weekend. Joy Kirk, a senior Sports Journalism/Film major, and Fantasia Smith, a senior Business Administration/Marketing major will spend the weekend shadowing employees from NASCAR, Sprint/NEXTEL, Yahoo! Sports, RoushFenway Racing, XM Satellite Radio and Ford Racing. The students will learn about the technical elements of the sport, as well as marketing and public relations.
"For the past four years, Clark Atlanta University has established a close rapport with NASCAR through permanent placement of our graduates, internships and participation in the mentorship program," said Ernita Hemmitt, director of career planning and placement center at Clark Atlanta University. "NASCAR has been able to heighten the Clark Atlanta University student awareness of career opportunities in the sport by hosting NASCAR College Tour days on campus as well as seeking Clark Atlanta University students to participate in NASCAR mentorship programs at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Through NASCAR's commitment to involve Clark Atlanta University students in various aspects of the industry, our students have demonstrated an increased awareness and interest in pursuing career opportunities within the NASCAR industry."
The program is scheduled to take place at nine NASCAR weekends this year -- following Atlanta Motor Speedway will be Phoenix International Raceway (Apr. 19-21), Talladega Superspeedway (Apr. 27-29), Richmond International Raceway (May 3-5), Dover International Speedway (June 1-3), California Speedway (Aug. 31-Sept. 2), Dover (Sept. 21-23), Kansas Speedway (Sept. 28-30) and Lowe's Motor Speedway (Oct. 11-13).
The positions are available to full-time college students in each race market that the program is taking place in. To be eligible, students must be in good standing with their school and community and must have a minimum 3.0 grade point average.
In addition to the mentorship program, NASCAR has several off track diversity initiatives, including an annual diversity internship program, diversity scholarship awards in tribute to NASCAR legend Wendell Scott and a college tour that visits Historically Black Colleges and Universities.