Belmont Abbey College: Motorsports Management, the Hidden Gem of College Degrees
EDITOR'S NOTE: This is part one of a two-part series featuring the only two colleges in the United States that have a Motorsport Management Bachelor degree. The first part is about Belmont Abbey College and the second part is about Winston-Salem State University.
Fairfield, Illinois (9/29/2020) Only two colleges/universities in the United States that have a Motorsports Management Bachelor degree available as a major. Yes, you heard that right, only two out of about 5,300 colleges/universities in America. The two colleges are Winston-Salem State University (WSSU) and Belmont Abbey College (BAC). Today we are highlighting on Belmont Abbey.
With only two colleges in the nation having this unique degree, chances are you have never heard of this major and are wondering what it is exactly. The Motorsport Management degree can lead you into many different aspects of the racing industry. The main focuses are to give you in-depth courses and real-world experiences with marketing and operations of sanctioning bodies, tracks, teams, sponsors, media, and agencies. From local to international racing, these aspects are all very important. But what does BAC have to offer to get you ready for the massive world of Motorsports?
Belmont Abbey is a private Catholic liberal-arts college right outside of Charlotte, North Carolina. The NASCAR Hall of Fame and Charlotte Motor Speedway in the area gives any student who wishes to attend a great head start in finding a possible internship. Not only is Belmont Abbey close to Charlotte, but it is also about 45 minutes away from the Mooresville, North Carolina area, which is known as the epicenter of NASCAR teams and shops. Networking is very important in rising up the ranks of this tough industry, and being so close to the epicenter could be extremely valuable at the beginning of your journey to the top.
The Abbey produces a Bachelor of Arts in Motorsport Management upon graduation. The idea of the program was co-founded by Humpy Wheeler Jr., the former President and General Manager of Charlotte Motor Speedway. Mr. Wheeler is now a part of the Executive Board that oversees the program.
Some notable alumni of BAC are Dan Guffey, Amanda Harrison, and Jordan Anderson. Guffey has been at Jeff Gordon Inc. since 2010 as the Director of Social Media and Online Business. Anderson is a NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series full time driver, and Amanda Harrison is the Digital Platform Coordinator at NASCAR.
Harrison spoke highly and with great insight about her time at Belmont Abbey. "My time at the Abbey was far from your typical college experience. The classes are different than your typical class with many in-class speakers from the industry and field trips to shops, corporate buildings, and even studios. Students seem more focused, and do internships to help you show your skills to big teams and companies. Without these opportunities, I would never have gotten where I am today."
A new faculty addition will be added to the Belmont Abbey Motorsport Management program this fall. This new addition is Quinn Beekwilder, making the switch to BAC after nine years at Charlotte Motor Speedway (CMS). Mr. Beekwilder is an alumnus of Belmont Abbey. Like many people in the Motorsports industry, he started at the bottom and has worked his way up to being the Digital Marketing Manager at CMS. Where he held that position for almost five years. Starting fall of 2020 he will be the new Coordinator of Motorsport Management and an Assistant Professor at The Abbey.
In the 2016 Daytona 500, Belmont Abbey's program had an affiliation with 67% of the teams involved. That is a remarkable number, and I know Mr. Beekwilder looks to improve upon it. Belmont Abbey College has a stout Motorsport Management program that has a great track record. The Abbey's Motorsport Management program is worth a look if you are interested in business, love racing, and want to work in a very competitive environment. If you would like to learn more about the program, you can reach out to Mr. Quinn Beekwilder at firstname.lastname@example.org.