I’ve just returned from my first trip down to Austin to attend SXSWedu, where two things guided my strategy and planning for the conference.
The first was the news that The LAMP’s proposal to the Digital Media + Learning Competition’s Trust Challenge, in partnership with Convergence Academies, Global Kids and Minds on Design (MOD) Lab, was successful. We had learned that we won several weeks prior, but we were unable to share the news because it was going to be officially announced at an event at SXSWedu. Sitting on this exciting news was challenging, and I was very jazzed for the announcement to be made on March 10.
The second thing was our recently completed scaling plan (developed with the Whelan Group with support from the Hive Digital Media Learning Fund in the New York Community Trust) for our MediaBreaker tool. I couldn’t be prouder of this plan. The hard work of our staff, board members, volunteers and the fantastic folks at the Whelan Group really paid off. The scaling plan provides a crystal clear strategy for what steps need execution in order for us to realize our vision of ‘creating 10,000 Junior Jon Stewarts’ (which, by the way, the plan indicates should happen by Year 3). Every session I attended, every question I asked, every coffee I tried to arrange, every conversation I had at SXSWedu was shaped by this scaling plan. It made my time management very focused and efficient.
In many ways, SXSWedu was a harmonious confluence of otherwise random things. That we won the DML Trust challenge right around the time our MediaBreaker scaling plan was completed would be serendipitous enough for one trip to Austin. However, the whole reason I was originally going down was to deliver a Future 15 speech entitled “Using Media to Create 10,000 Jon Stewarts.” The speech was well-received and attended, and made all the more worthwhile because of the reality of the DML announcement and the guidance of the scaling plan. Check out my pictures below for more from the conference.
– D.C. Vito
Follow me on Twitter: @dcvito