SXSWEdu, Brooke McDonald, Carly Croman
Brooke & Carly at SXSWedu!

Last week, two members of the LeadLocal team took a last-minute road trip to Austin, Texas for one of the nation’s largest education conferences, SXSWEdu. Now that we’re back in the desert and we’ve had some time to process, here are some of the highlights…

Brooke’s thoughts-
Favorite restaurant: Royal Blue Grocery, great for grabbing lunch on the go to make it to all the sessions we wanted to see.

Best Session: “Is Design Thinking Racist?” challenged my assumptions and made me think differently about a tool we use often at LeadLocal. I really appreciated their ability to learn from setbacks and challenges.

Lesson for next year: Watch out for the bats, Austin has a ton of them!

Carly’s take-
Favorite restaurant: H&H Coffee + Carwash in El Paso, road travelers…this is a must-stop.

Best Session: the Remake Learning in Mr. Roger’s New Neighborhood stands out for me because of the compelling story about the work happening in Pittsburgh that the panelists told from multiple perspectives (including a student!)

Lesson for next year: Pack more comfortable shoes & way more business cards.

Things we both loved:
Seeing our friends at Real World Scholars and watching them build such excitement for more student-run businesses next semester

Applauding for Tucson’s own Josh Schachter from CommunityShare at the panel about community engagement put on by Digital Promise. Josh said “People become agents of change through personal experience- we need to put the public back into public education.

And of course, connecting with so many amazing people who are doing the hard work to improve education. Thanks SXSWEdu, what a whirlwind of a week!

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