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Interns at Work

Austin Eisenhofer '15 Penske Racing, Inc. Mooresville, N.C.

"The most important takeaways I bring back are from the leadership standpoint."

How did you learn about this internship?

During my freshman year, Penske began looking for an Athletics Intern. My father has painted IndyCars for Penske for 30+ years now, so he let me know about it.

What gave you the edge in landing this internship?

Besides my dad already being the head of the Paint Shop, my knowledge of sports training helped a lot because of the training that the pit crews must go through on a daily basis. My understanding of racing, thanks to years of watching, also gave me an edge. Finally, in such a blue collar industry, a hardworking attitude goes a long way.

Describe your daily duties.

We had pit practice on every Tuesday and Wednesday. So, most of Monday was spent setting up for the practices on Tuesday morning. Tuesday afternoon was spent getting ready for Wednesday morning. On days that were not filled with practice, I helped set up and organize the film system, and had the opportunity to sit in on some pit crew team decisions. During the practices I practiced as a tire carrier (the one who puts the tire on the NASCAR) on the ARCA and Truck series teams, a backup fueler for IndyCar, or I drove the electric NASCAR we had for practice.

What was your favorite part or perk of the internship?

My favorite part of the internship was the camaraderie with all of the pit crews. We had quite a few characters on the teams. My favorite perk may have been getting paid to lift in a state of the art weight room.

How did you like living in Mooresville?

I've lived in Mooresville since my freshman year of high school, so I'm pretty acclimated to it. It's a booming town just north of Charlotte, so it's a great place to be.

What key takeaways/skills will you bring back to W&L?

The most important takeaways I bring back are from the leadership standpoint. Since I am a captain of our football team here at W&L, I watched our pit coaches closely to see how they handled certain situations that may not sit well with some members of the teams. I hope to eventually climb the ranks within a sports team and sit in a management job, so I tried to soak up as much as possible.

What advice would you give to students interested in a position like this?

The advice I would give to students interested in a position like this is GO FOR IT. At W&L there seems to be a stigma that if you aren't in a banking or office job, then you are not successful. Not many people enjoy racing as much as I do, but if you are interested in any job that may be out of norm, go for it and you might just find a job that pays what you want for doing something you really love.

Will you pursue a career in this field after graduation?

Assuming I get a job in the Charlotte area, I do plan on working on a pit crew as a tire carrier. Pit crews are filled with former college/pro athletes, so it is a good way to make some extra money on the side while continuing an athletic or competition career. I am currently looking to land a job with a professional sports team outside of racing, but there is a good possibility that I try to go back to Penske and work in the business side of racing while also working on a pit crew.

Describe your experience in a single word.

A Foundation in
Ethics and Leadership

At Washington and Lee, leadership and integrity go way back--and hand in hand.

In Action People and Programs

"My wish is that in the near future and far beyond, our students will say that their lives were enriched by having had the opportunity during their time at W&L to grapple with challenging moral and ethical dilemmas as preparation for those that they will inevitably face throughout their lives, and that they develop courage of their convictions, but also the humility to question their own assumptions and learn from others." -- President Kenneth P. Ruscio

At Washington and Lee, leadership and integrity go way back-and hand in hand. Grounded in the timeless ideals of its legendary namesakes, the Washington and Lee community thrives on an ethic of honor and civility. An air of respect enables frank debate, resulting in a culture of open exchange and intellectual freedom. The revered, student-administered Honor System creates ideal conditions for an education based on integrity and trust. Exams are self-scheduled and unproctored, most buildings are open 24 hours a day, and students respect each other's personal belongings.

Washington and Lee also places high value on equipping its students to assume leadership roles in college and beyond--helping them carry forward our rich institutional legacy. Members of the faculty publish extensively on topics related to leadership and honor. Students interested in fostering their leadership skills will find countless opportunities on campus, in student organizations, student government and athletics, as well as programs and events like the Leadership Development Program and the Women's Leadership Summit. The first national college honor society to recognize leadership and extracurricular service, Omicron Delta Kappa, was founded and continues to thrive at W&L, and has spread to more than 300 other campuses.

To encourage a new generation of outstanding scholars, leaders and ethical citizens, the University recently created both the Johnson Program in Leadership and Integrity and the Mudd Center for Ethics. Funded by a $100 million gift from a W&L alumnus, the Johnson Program awards full tuition, room and board for about 10 percent of each class, endows two professorships, brings distinguished speakers to campus, and provides generous research stipends to students during the summer. The Mudd Center, established by a gift from the distinguished, award-winning journalist Roger Mudd, Class of 1950, provides a forum for dialogue, teaching and research about important ethical issues in public and professional life among students, faculty and staff. No wonder high numbers of Washington and Lee students rise to positions of prominence in their communities and around the world.

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At a Glance Facts and Figures

472 (roughly 75%) of the student body, participates in organized sports at the intramural, club or varsity level.
95% of the student body gets involved in the quadrennial Mock Convention.
1 rule in W&L's student-run, single-sanction honor system: no lying, cheating or stealing. Period.
W&L alumni include 31 governors, 26 senators, 67 congressmen and 4 supreme court justices.

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Washington and Lee University provides a liberal arts education that develops students' capacity to think freely, critically, and humanely and to conduct themselves with honor, integrity, and civility. Graduates will be prepared for life-long learning, personal achievement, responsible leadership, service to others, and engaged citizenship in a global and diverse society.