Liberty University Establishes Scholarship in Memory of NASCAR Driver; LU-Sponsored Driver William Byron’s Throwback Car Unveiled

The family of Liberty University President Jerry Falwell (left) stands with Xfinity Series driver William Byron and Linda and Rick Hendrick at the NASCAR Hall of Fame on Aug. 2, 2017.

Liberty University announced the creation of the Ricky Hendrick Scholarship Fund at a press conference held Wednesday at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, N.C. The scholarship honors the son of Linda and Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports, which signed Liberty student and NASCAR Xfinity Series driver William Byron to a multi-year driver agreement last summer. Ricky Hendrick was a former NASCAR driver and team owner who died along with 10 others in a plane crash en route to a race in Martinsville, Va., in October 2004.

Liberty President Jerry Falwell and his wife, Becki, presented a $25,000 check to establish a need-based fund for qualifying students enrolled in Liberty’s Automotive Dealership Management degree program through the School of Business.

“Liberty University is a lot like JR Motorsports,” Falwell told the crowd on Wednesday. “We focus on Training Champions for Christ, and I’ve seen how Rick and his organization (Hendrick Motorsports) nurtures drivers and creates quality individuals and builds their character as well as their ability.”

This past spring, Liberty piloted its first course in Automotive Dealership Management in partnership with Hendrick Automotive Group, which owns 102 dealerships nationwide. The company is the largest privately held automotive retail organization in the United States. The program, which is only offered at two other colleges in the country, is available residentially and online.

Rick Hendrick, a NASCAR Hall of Fame member and co-owner of JR Motorsports who has trained some of the most famous drivers in the sport, including Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, and Dale Earnhardt, Jr., owner of JR Motorsports, has lectured at Liberty through the new degree program. No other university is providing the same hands-on experience for students at this level.

“Liberty produces the most quality young people we’ve ever met in our business, so it’s a real honor for the automotive group to be able to partner with the college,” Hendrick said. “Our folks are working with Liberty on the…

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