Dex Wesley Parra is a writer and reporter based in Austin, TX. He has been published in The Austin Chronicle, The Daily Texan and Media Ethics Magazine. His beats include public policy, film & TV and technology. Dex holds degrees in journalism and government from UT-Austin.

Selected Works

Will Texas Expand Medical Marijuana Access?

When the Texas Department of Public Safety announced in January that it would accept new applications to license medical marijuana dispensing organizations, a budding chorus of advocates and patients celebrated the potential for greater access to cannabis. But as the April 28 deadline to apply approaches, many of them worry it may not be enough, given that current access to the Compassionate Use Program (CUP) is extremely restricted.

Austin Hackers Group Gets Recognition From Global Body

On the last Thursday of every month, in the walled-off back room of an unassuming North Austin sports bar right off I-35, a variety pack of 40-some-odd information sector types – computer programmers, web developers, and the like – convene for a couple of evening hours to present the latest coding bugs they've uncovered. They call themselves Austin Hackers Anonymous, abbreviated as AHA! like the Eighties pop act (leave it to hackers to claim the URL takeonme.org).

Students Rally Behind Earthquake Aid Relief

The instant Busra Dokmen, a freshman engineering student at UT-Austin, heard about the 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck southern Turkey on Feb. 6, she called her mother to ask about her relatives who live in a small town in the region. Her grandparents were caught in the rubble and debris, but luckily, she said, her aunt helped recover them to safety. Elsewhere, her mother's cousin died beneath a sunken building before rescue teams could extract her.

Short & Sweet: “When You Left Me on That Boulevard”

Welcome to "Short and Sweet," our look at short films playing at SXSW. Every day during the festival, we'll focus on a different film and filmmaker, kicking off with Kayla Abuda Galang. An Audience Award winner at SXSW 2021 for her last short, "Learning Tagalog With Kayla," the writer, director, producer, and editor now brings home her Sundance 2023 Short Film Grand Jury Prize winner, "When You Left Me on That Boulevard."

AFS Film Series Abraham/Ibrahim Highlights Diversity and Common Ground

How much do you know about the Middle East and North Africa? Like, really know?

For Karen Grumberg, director of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at UT, the answer is quite extensive. A specialist in modern Hebrew literature, among other topics, it’s not lost on her that the wider Austin community – and Americans at large – don’t have the wealth of knowledge that she possesses about the Middle East/North Africa (MENA) region.

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