Digital Builder Ep. 29: Explore the Future of Construction at Autodesk University 2022 

podcast digital builder episode 29

Looking for somewhere exciting to visit this September? If so, you might consider making the trek to New Orleans for this year’s Autodesk University. We are finally coming back to you in person in 2022. After two years of all digital events, the conference is something construction professionals should not miss.


To get a behind-the-scenes look at what you can expect this year, I was joined by three leaders from across Autodesk including Adam Sopko, Director of Experiential Programs, Allison Scott, Director of Customer Experience & Advocacy, and Zet Norman, Construction Experiential Manager.

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Read on for a glimpse into this special episode of the podcast.

Autodesk University’s Impact on Career Paths

Conferences are often one of the best ways to learn new skills and advance your career in construction. Allison Scott summed it up best when she said, “You're going to be able to walk away with very thoughtful, tangible, and actionable insights–creating a knowledge base that you can put to work right away.” Allison has the unique experience of first attending AU as a customer, prior to her joining Autodesk later in her career.

Zet Norman’s been supporting construction at AU since she joined Autodesk in 2014. If you’ve attended in the past, Zet had a hand in crafting your experience! When asked about what’s in store this year, she shared, “There are over 60 construction classes across the three days,  and the construction session is a must-see on Wednesday!” 

But beyond the classes and announcements, Adam Sopko feels that AU is really about something bigger. “There’s always been an element of the conversation at AU around what's happening within the industry.”

Adam has been driving the overall vision and experience of AU for the last eight years. When asked to elaborate on the AU vision he shared, “What are the visionary statements or thought leadership perspectives that are kind of driving the industry forward? This year we're trying to make that more explicit for our audience. There's a lot of opportunities and a lot of value for everyone at AU.”

Get Hyped: What’s Happening at Autodesk University 2022

It was clear that re-establishing in-person connection was the biggest point of excitement leading up to the event. Allison points out she is “excited to have that chance to see people again and give people hugs, handshakes, or high fives.” She also adds that for AEC industry, being able to build connections goes hand-in-hand with its success.

Read More: 5 Reasons Construction Professionals Can’t Miss Autodesk University 2022

For Adam, the community aspect stands out the most. “There is something special about the AU community. It's palpable when you're on site and you're surrounded by thousands of your peers who are working through the same challenges and are becoming more efficient and sustainable. It's really meaningful on a personal level.”

"It's palpable when you're on site and you're surrounded by thousands of your peers who are working through the same challenges and are becoming more efficient and sustainable."

- Adam Sopko, Director of Experiential Programs, Autodesk

Allison also adds, “I'm actually building a new team [at Autodesk] focused on the construction experience and the way that we build a community for our industry. For construction professionals engaging with Autodesk, the notion of community is central for us. We're bringing that into the AU experience this year in many different ways.”

Goodbye Las Vegas, Hello New Orleans!

Taking the conference out of the Las Vegas desert and to the coast–more specifically the historic city of New Orleans–will bring new energy to this year’s event. Get ready to spend time connecting in-person with your community and meeting with industry experts.

Be sure to check out the massive Expo hall (a mile end-to-end with three floors!) featuring exciting construction technology and industry-leading innovations. If you look close enough, you might find me recording a podcast or three live during the event!

And don’t forget this basic, but an essential word of advice from Zet when exploring the expo hall: “Don't wear new shoes.”

Listen in and register today

Attendees at this year’s Autodesk University will have access to keynote speeches, live presentations, instructive classes, and much more. Don’t miss your chance to attend! Register today, and we’ll see you in person in New Orleans from September 27-29!

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By the way, Digital Builder is hosted by me, Eric Thomas. Stay tuned for new episodes of Digital Builder by subscribing to our blog. 

Eric Thomas

Eric is a Sr. Multimedia Content Marketing Manager at Autodesk and hosts the Digital Builder podcast. He has worked in the construction industry for over a decade at top ENR General Contractors and AEC technology companies. Eric has worked for Autodesk for nearly 5 years and joined the company via the PlanGrid acquisition. He has held numerous marketing roles at Autodesk including managing global industry research projects and other content marketing programs. Today Eric focuses on multimedia programs with an emphasis on video.