My SXSW 2016 Experience

SXSW is well known for three different categories. Music, Interactive, and Film. Scoring a Gold badge gets you into Interactive and Film, and that was more than enough for me.

My first day on the scene started with me waiting in line for quite a bit of time. But after that, a whole new world unfolded right before my eyes. The first event I went to? President Barack Obama’s Keynote presentation. The wait this time was even longer than the line for getting my Gold badge. The sun was high in the sky by this time and sweat rolled down my face. Yes, I could’ve been doing a myriad of other things. But would I risk doing all that to NOT be able to see the President with my own two eyes? Never in a million years.

President Obama’s interview really gave me hope for how the government will be more advanced with the rest of humanity. Being able to have services delivered to us in a streamlined manner is just amazing.  The feeling I got with being in the same room with the president, I can’t find the words to describe it. I always thought I’d never see anyone as important as him. But this took away my previous belief.

After hearing his speech, I walked out feeling new and inspired. This gave me hope for a not-so-boring Spring Break.

The next day, I came by and saw a huge ferris wheel while walking around the downtown area and exploring. It was about AMC’s new show called “Mr.Robot”. Feeling a bit skeptical at first, I wasn’t sure if I could live through a ride on it. Luckily, my fear of heights didn’t kick in an I was able to take in a breathtaking view of our beautiful city. Another memory for me!

What I found out while exploring downtown is how much free food there is, and that alone saved my wallet. Free candy bars, free tacos, just about anything a convention goer would need and more. The willingness and dedication of companies to provide free items made me feel welcome. The crowds and helpful staff/volunteers made me feel safe and calm. I didn’t feel like I was out of my comfort zone at anytime. Seeing all the latest things in technology and watching short films made by students like me, made me feel so connected to the city.

It was a feeling and an experience I would never forget. I can’t thank Mr. Settles enough for allowing me to have this experience of a lifetime. I can’t thank Mr. Perez enough for encouraging me and inspiring me to keep pumping out amazing content for my digital portfolio.

In closing, SXSW 2016 was the best weeklong event I’ve ever been to, and I’d like to go again next year.

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