NXG Youth Motorsports (NXG), an experiential academy for life-skill development, is expanding to the Detroit area and hosting its inaugural program June 5-6 at Belle Isle Park.
NXG (Nexgeneracers), and its programs featuring science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), create opportunities and experiences for its youth participants through motorsports while focusing on minority students from underrepresented communities.
After building a successful program and network that’s connected with thousands of youth participants in Indiana over the last 15 years, NXG became an official partner with INDYCAR and Penske Entertainment through its Race for Equality & Change initiative in 2020, and the academy has targeted the Detroit community as it expands its reach in 2021.
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (BCBSM) has made a multi-year commitment to sponsor the NXG program so youth in the Detroit area can learn about the opportunities for personal growth, education and career development through participation and understanding of the motorsports industry.
Following the current health and safety protocols in the state of Michigan, the NXG Detroit pilot program will launch June 5-6 with its MA100 classroom and on-track activities in the paddock area of the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix presented by Lear, which will take place the following weekend on Belle Isle. All of the NXG Detroit participants and their families will be invited to attend and experience the Grand Prix, June 11-13.
“As we begin our 15th year of NXG, the extensive collaboration and support between our sponsors at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and our partners at Penske Entertainment and the Detroit Grand Prix allows us to bring dynamic programming and exciting learning experiences for underrepresented girls and boys, 11-15 years old, into the city of Detroit,” said Rod Reid, NXG co-founder and chief instructor.
NXG originated in response to the lack of African American involvement in motorsports, and the program introduces urban children to opportunities available in this industry. In its efforts to increase awareness, increased participation and engagement in motorsports, this 501(c)(3) has an academy of courses that progressively uses performance driving as a tool for life-skill development, the application of STEM concepts, interactions with INDYCAR personnel and racing teams, along with exposure to career options in racing.
“Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan is proud to support programs like NXG Youth Motorsports that increase opportunities for students in the Detroit area to learn life skills, explore interests and form friendships,” said Daniel J. Loepp, president and CEO of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. “NXG’s expansion in Detroit provides the ability to reach students in some of our state’s most underrepresented communities. I am confident the academy will make a difference.”
NXG program courses, MA100, MA200 and MA300, progressively introduce boys and girls to the fundamental aspects of go-kart racing that include advanced driving techniques, track geometry, mechanical equipment understanding and self-control – each transferable to their future daily lives. NXG’s curriculum aligns with middle and high school academic standards in science and math related subjects. The academy is offered to participants in Detroit as a non-fee enrollment due to the generous support of its title sponsor, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.
“We want to thank Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan for partnering with NXG to bring this very important program to the Detroit community,” said Bud Denker, chairman of the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix presented by Lear. “With NXG’s track record of success over the last 15 years, we’re excited to welcome its expansion to Detroit and create new opportunities and educational experiences for our area youth through motorsports.”
Please visit the NXG Youth Motorsports website for program applications, requirements and more information: www.nxgyouth.org.