As I sit in the airport on my final adventure back to Boston from Austin, I’m struck with the need to share what I’ve learned in the past week at South by Southwest. Too many responded to my assertion that this was my conference excursion for the season with, “That’s a conference?” Yes, it is a well-known music festival. Yes, it has expanded to also cover film, comedy, and technology/innovation. YES, it has way more fun stuff than many of the conferences I traditionally attend.

But it also featured some of the strongest and most thoughtful sessions I’ve had the opportunity to go in nearly a decade of professional conference-going. While I get my head around the rest of it, I invite you to peek at the learning I documented while in sessions via Storify. More reflection will follow, and the photos are on Instagram 🙂

SXSW Banner 1Shedding Light on Hidden Bias
with Robin Hauser (Finish Line Features), Britta Wilson (Pixar), Howard Ross (Cook Ross LLC), and Carl Horton (DELL)

SXSW Banner 2Don’t Dis My Ability
with Brittany Dejean (AbleThrive), Josh Gottesman (MassChallenge Israel), and Matan Koch (Capitalizability LLC)

SXSW Banner 3Get Out, Be In: What I’ve Learned Working Remotely
with David Weaver (Barkley, AccessCMO)

SXSW Banner 4A Dream Deferred: Undocumented Millennials
with Jason Finkelman (Finkelman Immigration Law), Ainee Athar (FWD.US), Saba Nafees (Texas Tech University), and Mayte Ibarra (UT-Austin)

SXSW Banner 5Research Universities Should Be Better at Startups
with Kerry Rupp (True Wealth Ventures), Bob Metcalfe (UT-Austin), and Gregory Fenves (UT-Austin)

SXSW Banner 6 (1)A New Era for College Towns
with Elana Fine (UMCP’s Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship), Eric Golman (JavaZen), Ken Ulman (UMCP), and Scott Plank (WarHorse LLC)

SXSW Banner 7Making People Accidentally Enjoy Learning
with Daniel O’Brien (Cracked), Keli Dailey (News Hangover), and Lloyd Ahlquist (Maker Studios)

SXSW Banner 8Entrepreneurship and Higher Education
with Seth Holloway (Salesforce), Chantal Pittman (Unique Influence Partners), and Connor Davidson (UT-Austin McCombs School of Business)

SXSW Banner 9#OTTNO: The Next Generation of Advocates
with Alexis Moncada (Feminist Culture), Kwame Rose, Maria Teresa Kumar (Voto Latino), and Daunnette Reyome

SXSW Banner 10Why Tech Should Lead on Diversity and Inclusion Now
with Melinda Epler and Wayne Sutton (both of ChangeCatalyst)