Why NASCAR’s Kulwicki continues to impact alma mater

A new, 5-minute bio of Alan Kulwicki, by Fox6 News, provides a look at the grit and determination of one of the college’s most celebrated graduates–and why he continues to make an impact at his alma mater.

Milwaukee-area native Alan Kulwicki (’77 BS Mechanical Engineering) turned his dream into a reality. He was the first college graduate to win a NASCAR championship and was publicly proud of his engineering degree; he considered it essential to his success in auto racing.

Kulwicki was inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2019, 26 years after his death in a plane accident.

For years, UWM’s College of Engineering & Applied Science has honored the NASCAR legend as the Kulwicki Pit Stop. Today, the inviting area on the first floor of the Engineering & Mathematical Sciences Building is being renovated as the Kulwicki Garage, a “thinkerspace,” ear-marked as a public meeting space and non-traditional classroom.

“We want our students to kind of embody this spirit of having an idea, having something to engineer, but also having a way to finance it, finding a way to run with it,” Ilya Avdeev, associate professor of mechanical engineering and director of innovation, Lubar Entrepreneurship Center, told Fox6 News.

Read more about Kulwicki and the new Kulwicki Garage.