Following up on the post below, here's an inspirational article forwarded to me by a fellow Carnegie Mellon alumni (thanks Elaine). It tells the story of Randy Pausch's, a Carnegie Mellon computer-science professor, "last lecture" at my alma mater.

One of the greatest things another person can do and what I attribute to the best teachers, coaches, and professors I've had over the course of my academic years was their ability to inspire, to instill so much passion in what we were learning and / or doing that we would forgo sleep, socializing, or food.

You know I totally missed Carnival my first year because of this? I never even set foot on Midway, all I recall is the ferris wheel all lit up peeking over the buildings during the wee hours of the morning from my desk in studio. But I never felt angry or sorry for myself, I was having too much fun drawing and building in studio. Sometimes I wish I hadn't been so fortunate during my early days at CM(U). Without Marsha and Brock or Dutch and Anne I would have realized earlier that architecture wasn't for me and switched to business administration.

I hope you've read the article by now, you can experience his full lecture here. Randy taught an amazing interdisciplinary class called Building Virtual Worlds. Students got together from the various colleges within the university to program, build and in essence create these virtual worlds that you could experience via headset. In order to get into the class (because I didn't meet the prereqs) I had to go see Randy and convince him that I had the chops to contribute to the course. During my brief interview with him I didn't do much talking, instead it was he that was convincing me that I had the ability to contribute to the class. Unfortunately I couldn't commit the time necessary to the projects and by mid-semester I dropped the course. Up to that point, I enjoyed the class tremendously the only downer was the ever present 'Studio' hanging in the back of my mind.

Though his time with us is limited he'll live on through these anecdotes provided by all those he inspired. Sometime in the distant future, I hope his children will truly appreciate the person he is / was by piecing all of this together.