KY FAME Partners with NASCAR Driver Garrett SmithleyKAM
The Kentucky Federation for Advanced Manufacturing Education (KY FAME), the Commonwealth’s nationally recognized workforce training organization, is excited to announce its sponsorship of NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS) driver Garrett Smithley and his “Number Zero” Chevrolet Camaro for the NASCAR Xfinity ALSCO 300 at Kentucky Motor Speedway on Friday, July 8.
KY FAME is a partnership of manufacturers and higher-learning institutions that have teamed up to provide education and careers for technically skilled workers in advanced manufacturing. The program offers innovative, apprentice-style education and training designed to create one of the most highly skilled workforces in the world.
“It’s exciting for KY FAME to partner with Garrett Smithley and sponsor him for the ALSCO 300,” said Kim Menke, manager of government affairs for Toyota and president of the KY FAME board of directors. “Garrett is a phenomenal young driver with high potential. I’m thrilled he is willing to provide KY FAME with exposure that will support Kentucky companies and promote manufacturing across the Commonwealth.”
KY FAME student participants enroll in the specialized Advanced Manufacturing Technician (AMT) program. Through AMT, students attend classes two days per week at one of the Kentucky Community and Technical College’s many locations and work an additional 24 hours per week for a sponsoring employer. Upon completion of the program, students receive an associate degree in applied sciences. With the practical skills gained during their paid work experience, most begin employment with a sponsor company. Others may decide to further their technical education to obtain bachelor’s degrees in engineering or business.
KY FAME chapters include the Bluegrass (central Kentucky), Greater Louisville, Northern Kentucky, Elizabethtown/Lincoln Trail, Greater Owensboro, Cumberlands, Southcentral, West Kentucky, and Northeast Kentucky regions. These nine chapters include over 140 manufacturers who have or are currently sponsoring over 500 students.
Smithley, in his first full-time NASCAR season, sits 18th in NXS points despite not running the first race of the season. He has two top-15 finishes in the last five events. Garrett has previously raced at Kentucky Motor Speedway in the ARCA Racing Series. A Georgia native with Kentucky ties, one of Garrett’s family members is one of KY FAME’s first AMT graduates and is now a skilled team member at TMMK in Georgetown.
“Joining with an industry-led partnership like KY FAME is an exciting opportunity,” Smithley said. “I’ve seen its benefits firsthand within my family. KY FAME provides my generation with pathways to promising futures and to careers that impact our economy.”
“Kentucky’s NASCAR fan base is so important to our sport. The Kentucky Motor Speedway is an amazing track with an electric environment, making this a special stop on the schedule. I am confident you’ll see the “Number Nuthin” KY FAME Chevrolet Camaro mixing it up on Friday, July 8,” he added.