Nathan Kelly Image
Nathan Kelly '16
Nathan Kelly is not your typical university student. There are not many psychology majors who can add pro-racer to their title before earning their degree.

But this Allisonian has done just that, pursuing a career as a professional racecar driver and his undergraduate degree simultaneously.

Kelly is a marketing specialist at Toronto’s Sportscar Boutique and a professional racecar driver, working with Mazda, Lamborghini, BMW, and Porsche.

He began racing at the age of nine with his father, the late Barry Kelly (’82). By the time he was 16 Kelly was racing in competitions across Canada and the United States.

But just as Kelly was preparing to study at Mount Allison, Barry was diagnosed with cancer. He passed away in 2012.

“This really changed my focus,” says Kelly. “It was shortly after my dad was diagnosed that I started to look at racing as a career and not just a hobby. I realized that life is extremely short and I’d rather chase what I love than settle for something else.”

Kelly has raced in multiple classes, including professional karting, Formula BMW, and Spec Miata. Recently he began to test with both Porsche and Lamborghini.

To focus on racing as a career and finish his degree, Kelly began taking many of his Mount Allison classes through correspondence, enabling him to race competitively across North America.

“My professors were so accommodating and flexible for my situation,” he says. “There was no resistance, everyone was supportive in my pursuit to have a career in racing, as well as earning my degree.”