What will metro Oklahoma City be like, look like, 20 years from today, in 2033?
It’s an important question. You’ve all heard people say how much the metro has changed over the years. It’s only natural to gaze into our figurative crystal balls and wonder what our metro area will become in two decades’ time.
This year, the staff at Outlook thought it would be fun to daydream a bit about our future — but we didn’t want to save that fun for ourselves. We asked local leaders, experts and specialists around town in the areas of the arts, business, sports, medicine and education to give us their thoughts on the subject. As you’ll read, they had no shortage of opinions.
In just a smattering of the people we interviewed, you’ll hear Flaming Lips frontman Wayne Coyne in a curiously restrained description of what the area could be in 20 years; OKC Thunder General Manager Sam Presti on growth of the NBA in OKC; Devin CEO Larry Nichols and Continental Resources CEO Harold Hamm on the “new horizons” of the city, OU President David Boren and OSU president Burns Hargis on education’s future; Dr. Stephen Prescott, director of the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, on medical breakthroughs in the next 20 years, and on and on.
When you think about it, 2013 and 2033 are significant years. This year is the 20th anniversary of the beginning of the MAPS projects, and of course, 2033 will be the 40th anniversary. With so many new MAPS projects in process now — some already pictured through renderings, and others not yet — we can’t help but wonder what’s in store for the glorious cities of our future.
In one of the most unusual features — dare I say, coolest? — of Outlook this year, we also asked YOU to chime in, not just in words but also in pictures. We asked you to take a photograph that somehow described #okc20yearslater and then post on Instagram or Twitter. We received more than 100 entries, and culled them down to our winners and top finalists.
The prize for first place goes to Darren Johnson of Oklahoma City, for his black-and-white photo of a reflected image of our downtown landscape. Johnson takes the top prize: a Sony alpha 55 Digital SLR with 18-55 zoom lens, a tripod and case, and memory cards. Runners-up won $250 gift certificates. Prizes were provided by Bedford Camera.
These incredible images, and information on their creators, are published on Pages 1-2B.
Students on our covers
This year, we asked a few students from the University of Central Oklahoma and Oklahoma City University to help us with our cover graphics. You’ll see them on the first and fourth sections of Outlook 2013. We’d like to introduce them to you. We believe you’ll be hearing from these creative and talented students in the future.
The Way We Live cover
Nathan Packer, 22, is a senior at the University of Central Oklahoma, where he is studying public relations as his major and advertising and journalism as minors. In his free time, Nathan enjoys spending time with his fiancee and friends. After graduation, Nathan wants to get a job in PR and then start a family.
Education and Careers cover
William (Billy) Godwin, 26, is a senior in the University of Central Oklahoma’s Professional Media program. After Billy graduates, he wants to get a radio job while attending law school at the University of Oklahoma. Billy ultimately wants to be a civil rights attorney with experience in radio, possibly hosting his own legal-themed radio program.
Robin Ladd, 19, is a senior philosophy/political science major at Oklahoma City University. Robin is the Student Government Association president at OCU, as well as the vice chair of the Student Advisory Board for the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.
Joshua Lim, 26, is a Public Relations major at the University of Central Oklahoma, graduating in May. He is involved on campus, particularly with the Office of International Services, where he works as an International Programming Assistant. He was recently awarded the recognition of UCO Standout Student, and has served on multiple student organizations, including the International Student Council, Asian-American Student Association and a Global Leadership Ambassador.
Thanks to the students for participating in this year’s Outlook!
So, lean back, have a read, and then think ... how do YOU think the metro area will change in 2033? Tell us on Twitter and Instagram. Be sure to use the hashtag #okc20yearslater and let’s keep the conversation going!