A magnet is an invisible force that pulls other ferromagnetic materials – which may include ironclad content and resolute humans articulating nimble technologies.
The LightUp Virtual Conference was one such “magnet” as it brought together Microsoft MVPs and Microsoft leaders with support from their connected tech communities with the noble objective of hosting 24 hours of Microsoft technologies learning and fundraising in the fight against COVID-19.
Event organizer, speaker, and Microsoft Office 365 MVP Manpreet Singh attributes the conference success to community support, with the event raising $4300 for UNICEF.
“Our community is the reason this became so big,” Manpreet says. “When they started to know about this event, they started to reach out and help in any way they could as speakers and volunteers. Soon enough, we were more than 100 registered speakers from the United States, Argentina, Colombia, India, Malaysia, Germany, Singapore, Russia and more! In fact, the requests to speak never stopped – we had people reaching out to us on the night before to be a part of this event. This was our strong community in action!”
The conference brought together 134 speakers (consisting of 22 women speakers, 57 MVPs, and 19 producers who doubled up as moderators) and cut across three timezones for 24 seamless hours on July 14. Impressively, more than 12,400 attendees tuned in on Microsoft Teams and 5,300 users watched on social platforms.
“This event was massive. It ran for 24 hours with five tracks and scores of speakers from across the globe”, says an excited MVP Speaker, Jasjit Chopra. According to Jasjit, the fact that this event stood for giving back to the community via transparent donations to UNICEF is what made many join this event. Fellow MVP speaker Kirti Prajapati agrees. Kirti affirms that the organizing team, volunteers, and speakers did a great job to reach the community by using various technology platforms.
The format of the conference itself was well laid out with 10 insightful keynote sessions interspersed between intervals of four hours during the marathon tech sessions. The keynote engagements ensured a welcome break with elaborate content on topics outside of the agenda. Technology, however, was never off the table. The engaging agenda covered a myriad of Microsoft technologies with unmissable topics to make the conference truly magnetic.
Another MVP speaker Jenkins Nesamony Sundararaj says he loved “learning from speakers round the clock from various countries of the world.” That sentiment was mirrored by another MVP speaker, Prakash Tripathi, saying the best part of the event was its purpose to serve the community and create networking opportunities with global experts and MVPs/RDs.
The LightUp Virtual Conference demonstrated giving back to the community, by the community, with Microsoft MVPs acting as the event’s enabling magnets. This event truly followed on from the words of MVP Manpreet Singh: "Sharing is caring, I loved it!”