Leading engineering school Texas A&M was selected to host the SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition Design Weekend. Developed by Elon Musk, co-founder of Tesla Motors, and SpaceX, the competition was designed to bring the smartest engineering students in the world together and build excitement around Hyperloop: a high-speed ground transportation concept. Texas A&M worked with Freeman to increase awareness and excitement around the competition, the VIP guests, and transportation engineering.
In addition to the brilliant competitors and world-renowned speakers and judges, the event featured ancillary activities for guests to experience the innovation and enjoyment behind transportation engineering.
The new Hall of Champions at Texas A&M’s Kyle Field was transformed into a hub of innovation for futuristic transportation. Attendees seeking a hands-on engineering experience had the opportunity to test-drive products and immerse themselves in the cool, innovative world of engineering.
Guests could take a hoverboard for a spin or satisfy the need for speed with a virtual reality Hyperloop ride. The energy was palpable throughout the event, from the excitement within each competitor’s booth, to the four video walls around the space featuring live video, Instagram feeds, and tweets, to the chatter on social media speculating if — and when — Musk would arrive at the competition.
Life in the Fast Lane
The competition attracted 150 teams of top engineering students from 20 countries around the world to showcase their talent and ideas.
Speakers like U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx and surprise guest Elon Musk drew huge crowds as they addressed the students and competitors about their shared passion for engineering. Attendees used the event hashtag #BREAKAPOD on social media to brag about being at this historic competition. Instagram featured over 500 photos, and Twitter had thousands of live update tweets.
The overwhelming social media hype swayed Musk to change his travel plans and surprise the audience at the competition, dropping by to share his excitement about their work. Texas A&M shined under the international spotlight, and the university even landed a speaking opportunity at SXSW Interactive to share the Hyperloop story with the public. Engineering universities, major business publications, and technology science blogs are buzzing with predictions, updates, and excitement about the potential impact of the Hyperloop.