Highlights From #SDCC15

IMG_7532 From July 9-12 I was at 2015 San Diego Comic Con (SDCC), which was my first time ever attending this mecca of sorts for geeks and nerds (and my first time ever in California). It was a whirlwind trip that had a lot of great highlights for me.


First off, the weather in San Diego was beautiful for the weekend I was there. The sun was out, it wasn't too hot, and overall it was just a great setting to be able to explore and experience the area. I did a lot of walking over the few days I was there, which wore me out a bit and gave me a solid sunburn towards the end of the trip.


On the first day of the trip (Thursday), I walked to the convention center to check in and just walked around the show floor and other off-site events to see everything and get a lay of the land. I eventually made my way to the San Diego Central Library for the panel I was helping to cover. This was definitely a huge highlight and it was what enabled me to come out in the first place so I'm really happy I was able to sit in and take a bunch of photos of the session.


After that panel, I crashed back at my room since I had to wake up early that day for my long flight from Boston. On Friday, I did more exploring, got tickets for a session, popped in for a panel, and then played the new Star Wars Battlefront game on the PlayStation 4. The Nerd HQ was demoing the game and it was incredible! I would contemplate getting a system to play this game it was that good. Then I went to the Nerdist Conival to see of their speakers (mainly Felicia Day). Both the Conival and Nerd HQ were free to anyone to come in, no SDCC badge was required. They both a lot of fun activities and it was nice that they were there as accessible options for fans to enjoy.


My favorite session that I got to go to was the Nerdist Podcast Network Podcast Jam (an unwieldy title to be sure) that featured Jonah Ray, Matt Mira, Pete Holmes, Kumail Nanjiani, Emily Gordon, and Sandra Daugherty. There was also a kid who does a podcast apparently on the network (The Mutant Season) that I had no idea who he was but it was sort of neat to hear from a young person and the impact doing a podcast has had on him. I had never seen all these people in person, much less all at the same time. It was hilarious! They provided some neat insights as well from their collective years podcasting. As a fan of the medium and an avid podcaster myself, it was definitely a major highlight of the whole con for me.


Saturday was spent checking out a local beach and dipping my feet in the Pacific Ocean (a life goal for me). I came back to SDCC later in the day to check out Adam Savage from MythBusters do a Q&A session as well as a session from the folks at Nerd for a Living about doing just that; how to get into nerdy creative fields like costume design, movie makeup and effects, comic writing/illustrating, etc. I have appreciated the work they do for a little while now so it was cool to be able to check this panel out.

After all that, I packed up and got to bed so I could head out the next morning for my flight back to the East Coast. It was an awesome trip and experience that I did not expect to have so soon in my life. I'll try to capture more of my in depth thoughts in a future post, but I just wanted to share some of the cool highlights from the trip with you all. If you haven't gone before, I hope you get the opportunity to do so at some point. It's an amazing experience to behold, and will definitely be memorable for you for your own awesomely geeky reasons.

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Recap of #SDCC15 "Geeks in Higher Ed" Panel

geekEd. Logo

"College should be more like Comic Con..."

I had the distinct pleasure to attend the fifth annual geekEd panel at San Diego Comic Con this year. I've seen similar presentations that have been done by some of these professionals at ACPA, but this was an excellent showing by this group and featured many professionals I have never heard speak before.


The panel was moderated by Brian MacDonald and consisted of Brian Arao, Alfred Day, Michelle Kittel, Patricia Nguyen, Liz Krulder, and Emily Sandoval. It was really great to especially hear from Liz about her experience as a student at Fresno State University who worked on developing their first "Geek Week" type event for their campus. All of the panelists came from different institutions and organizations, which itself brought a diversity of perspectives. The panelists also had very different backgrounds and outlooks on what made engaging the nerd/geek community so important and how the mediums of comics, video games, and entertainment can be used to start important discussions of current events.


A few of the big, actionable takeaways I had were about making the college environment a place where students (and staff) feel safe to be themselves and be unabashedly into whatever they love. This could mean allowing for geeky decorations in your office, encouraging and celebrating clubs of all sorts for students to find their niche, and making being smart cool. So much bullying and unfortunate discouragement happens before students get to college, but we can make our campuses a welcoming place for all so that in this pivotal time for students to find themselves, they can figure out who that really is without any of the baggage they picked up beforehand.

I've created a resource page for the folks that presented, which will be continually evolving to include new books, videos, and articles that are relevant, as well as contact info to connect with some of the awesome geeky professionals out there doing good work in this space.


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Going to #SDCC2015? Come Geek Out With Me!

geekEd. Logo For any and all going to San Diego Comic Con this year, I'm helping promote and cover a panel consisting of some awesome student affairs colleagues from across the country talking about the geek community within education.

Check out the program page here for more information, but I'll be there snapping photos, taking notes, and will also be at the convention for the rest of the time too, so expect some coverage of my experience (a first for me!) right here the week after the convention.

Hope to see some friendly faces there!

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What I'm Geeking Out About This Week - 06/19/15



Here's what was going on in my world this week:

I just finished this new season a few days ago (I promise not to spoil anything), and I was pleased with how it progressed. It wasn't great, but it was good and much better than a lot of other TV out there right now, I feel like. The slow burn character work is reminiscent of something like Mad Men or Breaking Bad, which I know isn't for everyone. I enjoy it (most of the time) but I found myself frustrated at times with the consistently dark viewpoint it had where nothing ever works out well. I also yearned for more coherent and deep back stories for the inmates. What they had was always great and I wanted more! I look forward to see where season 4 takes the story (and how long they can keep the show going).

  • Chicago

My long awaited trip out to visit my friend out in Illinois is happening this weekend. I'm really excited to take another adventure out to someplace I've never been, especially because I'm seeing my friend who I haven't seen in about a year. We'll have a lot to catch up on and I know it will be an awesome weekend. I don't really know what to expect of Chicago as a city but it is always neat to see new areas of our country as well as new college campuses specifically (which I know we'll get around to a couple over the course of the weekend).

I recently confirmed everything for what is an amazing, unexpected opportunity to help support some awesome student affairs colleagues who are putting on a panel at San Diego Comic Con (SDCC) this year. They've been doing this session for 5 years now (they've also presented at ACPA) and it's a great connection between the worlds of student affairs and geekdom (sound familiar?). I'm happy to help cover their session, check out San Diego, and soak in all of the convention that I can. I'll also be getting some things off my "Before I'm 30" list, which include dipping my feet in the Pacific Ocean, and going to SDCC. Be sure to stay tuned here for coverage of the panel as well as my adventures out to San Diego next month! I'M SO EXCITED!!!

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