The Black Automotive Media Group program, dubbed “The Driving Force,” will introduce HBCU students to automotive industry career opportunities within the fields of journalism and communications.
Jackson, MS – A partnership has been created for students interested in exploring multimedia career opportunities within the automotive industry. Through the Black Automotive Media Group (BAMG), minority students from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) will participate in a 10-week, field-credit academic program that’s comprised of virtual training and mentoring sessions also known as The Driving Force (TDF).
TDF evolved following a series of discussions between automakers and BAMG members in 2020. Those conversations began with an effort to improve the diversity and inclusion of African American journalists covering the industry and the opportune moment presented itself to help prepare the next generation of mobility media experts.
“Our collaboration with Jackson State University and Nissan America marks the 6th academic program with HBCUs that allows us to extend resources and experience to Black students,” said BAMG founding member Kimatni D. Rawlins. “The Driving Force will continue to help shape career pathways for talented scholars while offering more perspective on automotive industry opportunities.”
For the Spring, 2022 academic session, TDF welcomes 13 students from Jackson State University in Jackson, Mississippi. The TDF program would not be possible without the commitment and support from Nissan Americas.
“The Driving Force Program is a great opportunity to build interest and enthusiasm for the auto industry among the next generation of young professionals,” said Ashli C. Bobo, director, Corporate Communications, Nissan North America. “We look forward to working with BAMG to educate Jackson State University students about the world of automotive journalism and communications.”
TDF is led by respected media specialists Kimatni D. Rawlins of Automotive Rhythms Communications, Marcus Amick, and Greg Morrison from Bumper2Bumpertv, with additional support from an array of Black automotive journalists and publishers.
“The Department of Journalism and Media Studies is pleased to be a part of TDF with BAMG and Nissan America,” said Dr. Elayne Hayes Anthony, Chairman of the JSU Department of Journalism and Media Studies. “Our students will gain pertinent skills that will open new doors in the automotive industry. We are honored that our students can engage in an industry that will continue to hone their skills in writing, interviewing, public relations, and social media. We appreciate the team at Nissan for supporting the partnership.”
About Jackson State University
The mission of Jackson State University, an HBCU and comprehensive urban research university, is to provide quality teaching, research and service at the baccalaureate, masters, specialist, and doctoral levels to diverse populations of students and communities using various modalities to ensure that they are technologically-advanced, ethical, global leaders who think critically and can address societal problems and compete effectively.
About Nissan North America
Nissan is a global automotive manufacturer dedicated to driving innovation to enrich people’s lives. In the U.S., Nissan’s operations include more than 21,000 employees who work in automotive design, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. Nissan is in the midst of a global transformation, changing its business, products and culture to build a quality, sustainable business for employees, dealers, suppliers and customers. For more information, visit NissanUSA.com.
About the Black Automotive Media Group
The Black Automotive Media Group is a distinguished group of African American reporters and writers representing over 200 years of combined experience in automotive journalism within radio, television, print, experiential marketing, and social media. BAMG members either work for or own various automotive media platforms with a primary objective to bring equity to Black professionals who work within the automotive industry. For additional details regarding The Driving Force HBCU program, please visit AutomotiveRhythms.com.
Contact: Zakiya Johnson
Black Automotive Media Group
Contact: Markita Terry