Some of NASCAR’s future leaders may emerge from the 2015 NASCAR Diversity Internship Program (NDIP) class, which begins a 10-week summer session this weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
According to a NASCAR media release, the interns, who attend universities ranging from Minnesota to Puerto Rico, “will take part in the 10-week, paid program, created to expose multicultural college students to employment opportunities within America’s number one motorsport.”
The interns will receive a wide-ranging exposure to the sport in areas including engineering, finance, marketing, license and public relations.
Among NASCAR-related groups that will be hosting interns are several NASCAR divisions; Hendrick Motorsports, Rev Racing (which oversees NASCAR’s Drive For Diversity program) and Pocono Raceway.
“Since 2000, the NASCAR Diversity Internship Program has grown to become one of the premier internships in sports,” said Jim Cassidy, NASCAR senior vice president of racing operations. “For NASCAR, the program is an important part of our efforts to promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace.”
Nearly 300 students have taken part in the program since its debut 15 years ago. Several have gone on to full-time jobs in motorsports, including NASCAR, International Speedway Corporation, Octagon and Toyota.
One past intern is Pedro Mojica, who was part of the 2014 Class. After graduating from the University of Texas – San Antonio, Mojica accepted an engineer position for Toyota Racing Development.
“As an intern, I had the opportunity to become immersed in the world of NASCAR – a sport I was passionate about,” said Mojica, who also participated in the NASCAR Mentorship Program. “The NASCAR Diversity Internship Program provided me with a platform to launch my career in motorsports.”
Among “NASCAR 101” activities the 2015 class will take part in this weekend include guided tours of the NASCAR Research & Development Center, NASCAR Hall of Fame and Charlotte Motor Speedway before attending Saturday night’s Sprint All-Star Race.
Here’s the 2015 class lineup:
|Intern||Internship Assignment||College or University||Hometown|
|Kent Booze||NASCAR Brand and Consumer Marketing||Dartmouth College||Spiro, Okla.|
|Karl Bostick||Octagon Marketing||Elon University||Englewood, N.J.|
|Adrienne Bright||NASCAR Integrated Marketing Communications||Central Michigan University||Flint, Mich.|
|Nichole Dominguez||NASCAR Weekly and Touring||University of Central Florida||Daytona Beach, Fla.|
|Sydnei Fryson||Rev Racing PR/Marketing||Hampton University||Charleston, W.V.|
|James Harris||Hendrick Marketing/Business Development||University of North Carolina at Charlotte||Apex, N.C.|
|Zubin Jhambani||NASCAR Marketing Research||Syracuse University||Udaipur (Rajasthan), India|
|Giridhar Kathiresan||NASCAR Digital Media||University of North Carolina at Charlotte||Chennai (Tami Nadu), India|
|Victoria Kim||Pocono Raceway Marketing||Penn State University||Horsham, Pa.|
|Jordan Leatherman||Switch Marketing||Oklahoma State University||Muskogee, Okla.|
|Yuyi Li||NASCAR Industry Services||Duke University||Chapel Hill, N.C.|
|Bice Lizza||NASCAR Human Resources||Penn State University||Montville, N.J.|
|Jade McCrary||NASCAR Member Services||Florida A&M University||Daytona Beach, Fla.|
|Cole McGinnis||NASCAR Licensing||University of Iowa||Davenport, Ia.|
|Jasmine Neely||NASCAR Integrated Marketing Communications||University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill||Charlotte, N.C.|
|Hakeem Onafowokan||NASCAR Legal||University of Minnesota||Minneapolis, Minn.|
|Alexandre Pendegrass||NASCAR Multicultural Development||Howard University||Dallas, Texas|
|Keyzza Plaza||NASCAR Production Engineering||University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez||Toa Alta, Puerto Rico|
|Tonya Vanderpool||NASCAR Finance||University of Central Florida||Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands|
|Ashleigh Young||NASCAR Productions||Oklahoma State University||Santa Ana, Calif.|