Kenneth Lee Jr Thriving with NASCAR Internship

Talladega Superspeedway intern dreams of a long career in NASCAR.

The NASCAR Diversity Internship Program (NDIP) is known for giving opportunities to multicultural undergraduate and graduate college students.

Naturally, NDIP is a highly decorated program with the goal of introducing interns to the NASCAR world in various ways. The ten-week adventure is a paid summer internship.  Furthermore young, talented individuals participate in a unique lifetime experience.

Kenneth Lee Jr, a member of the NDIP Class of 2018, interns at Talladega Superspeedway’s Business Development and Public Relations departments. The 22-year-old Communications graduate studied at Tuskegee University, a university founded by African American activist Booker T. Washington.

“I was a part of the first class along with three of my classmates (Loretta Keener, Tiffany Wallace, and Makayla Bryant) and I was the first male graduate with the degree,” Lee said. “While I was at Tuskegee, I was able to work with the school newspaper, the Campus Digest, as a sports writer and worked for Tuskegee’s Athletic Communications team.”

Also, Lee took advantage of opportunities by being a part of the first on-air team. Specifically, he did play-by-play for Tuskegee’s baseball, basketball, and softball teams. Additionally, he managed the Athletic Communications team as a leader.

His interest in NASCAR started at a young age. Lee’s father attended school with racers Jeff and Ward Burton.

Eventually, his father bought Lee some of their diecast cars.  To say the least, it remains one of his fondest memories of racing.

“Before I know it, I’m lining up cars on the carpet, ‘racing’ them, and watching the race on Saturdays and Sundays,” he said.

Why It Matters

NDIP offered Lee a chance to live his dreams. The interns participated in multiple activities including a visit to Charlotte Motor Speedway during All-Star weekend.

According to Lee, the entire weekend was a blast. It was his first time at the track since the Martinsville fall race last season.

“It felt like I was at home again,” said Lee. “Besides the race, networking with all the interns was a fun time. We got to to know one another for the little time that we had together.”

Undoubtedly, the NDIP is a beneficial part of the sport. It provides opportunities to those who may not find it elsewhere.

“I think the NASCAR Diversity Internship Program is VERY important for the future of NASCAR as a whole,” explained Lee. “When you look at companies as a minority, you want to see where you can fit into the company culture.”

“It’s important to have a mixed bunch of people,” Lee added. “This will enable different perspectives on how things can be done to help innovate the sport!”

Ultimately, Lee hopes the internship at Talladega Superspeedway will eventually lead to a long, successful career in NASCAR.

In the meantime, his sights are on radio broadcasting with networks like MRN or PRN coming to mind. In the end, Lee’s passion and work ethic may make him an asset anywhere in the motorsports industry.

Kobe Lambeth

My name is Kobe Lambeth and I am a sophomore at UNC-Charlotte. I have been a NASCAR fan since 2007, and my dream is to work in the motorsports industry. In June 2017, my journey began as a freelance journalist and social media specialist for RockinghamNow covering high school sports, and leading a Twitter project in hopes of providing expanding coverage throughout the community, with a goal of significantly increasing the number of followers on multiple accounts. At The Podium Finish, my goal is to provide professional coverage of various disciplines of motorsports such as NASCAR, IndyCar, and the IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Championship.

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