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Thursday, October 09, 2014
Media Contact: Saidah Scott

NASCAR Speeds Its Way to the
Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications

Hampton, Va. - Oct. 8, 2014 - NASCAR will join the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications once again for the Drive for Diversity (D4D) Program, an effort to recruit more multicultural and female drivers to stock car auto racing.

More than 20 aspiring NASCAR drivers and several NASCAR and Rev Racing officials are coming to the area for the 11th Annual D4D Combine at Langley Speedway from Oct. 13 – 15.  The drivers are competing for a permanent position with NASCAR. As in the past two years, the prospective NASCAR drivers are readying themselves for more media exposure and engagement with support from the School of Journalism and Communications.  Public relations and strategic communication students, with guidance from Professor Tanya Howard, prepared news releases for each driver, and circulated them to faculty and students.

Drivers and students alike will participate in media training conducted by NASCAR’s Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) team in the Robert P. Scripps Auditorium on Oct. 13.  IMC will outline how to respond to media inquiries, personal branding, crisis communications, and more.

Immediately following, there will be mock interviews for the drivers in the Scripps TV Studio. Professors William Leonard, Wayne Dawkins, and Van Dora Williams will conduct interviews with the Drive for Diversity Program driver participants.  Students will sit in on the interviews and learn how to respond to questions, as well as how to assist the person interviewed by asking the right questions.

On Oct. 14, the Drive for Diversity media and public relations program will continue at the School of Journalism and Communications, with web and social media pioneer Max Spiegel addressing students about career opportunities with NASCAR. Later, at Langley Speedway, students will be led in a social media orientation by a Rev Racing communications professional before posting live to social media from the sidelines.  Hampton University alum and Olympic bronze medal hurdler Kellie Wells will help close the day at the track with a speech on sports and diversity.

For more information about this free event, please contact Dr. Battinto Batts at battinto.batts@hamptonu.edu.