DENTON (UNT), Texas — The University of North Texas is officially the proud higher education partner of Texas Motor Speedway, UNT President Neal Smatresk announced Wednesday (Nov. 1).
Smatresk introduced the brand-new partnership at a special Science of Speed panel discussion for students on the university’s Denton campus. The UNT president joined NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and Nationwide Series champion Austin Dillon, USA Luge legend Gordy Sheer and Dow Chemical Company Lead Research & Development Manager Sam Crabtree for the event, which marked the first collaborative project under the new partnership with TMS.
“Through our partnership with Texas Motor Speedway, we’ll be able to offer our students educational opportunities such as internships, class projects and in-class lectures from the experienced Texas Motor Speedway staff,” Smatresk said. “The partnership will directly benefit our students, specifically those studying sports management and marketing, hospitality and event management and business.”
The Science of Speed guest panelists discussed everything from engineering to mental pre-race preparations with students in attendance. Dillon wrapped the event with free tickets to Sunday’s AAA Texas 500 for students and the unveiling of the 2018 Winter Olympics paint scheme on his No. 3 Dow Chevrolet.
“It’s exciting to have University of North Texas, obviously a leader in education and getting young men and women ready for the workforce, involved with Texas Motor Speedway,” said Texas Motor Speedway President Eddie Gossage. “This partnership is mutually beneficial and one that we believe has the ability to drive value from a lot of different perspectives. UNT has the opportunity to leverage signage and their preferred status with an extremely loyal motorsports fan base. For us, it’s all about tapping into a younger generation of fans as well as possible future employees. We have a large number of full and part-time staff members that went there, so we obviously believe in the university. We are very proud to be aligned with a university that shares the same mission and values as we do and we can’t wait to get this partnership off the ground starting this November at the AAA Texas 500.”
UNT and TMS will work together to bring unique, mutually beneficial educational opportunities to students across multiple disciplines, such the event with Dillon, and internships at TMS in departments throughout the organization from events and hospitality all the way to finance.