A Response to Randy Pausch's "Last Lecture"

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Chris Cercone
Peter Palumbo
Randy Pausch’s Last Lecture
Carnegie Mellon University computer science professor Randy Pausch delivered a highly memorable and inspirational presentation in 2007, entitled “Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams.” I thought it was emotional, powerful and gripping, as was the book about it, The Last Lecture.

Pausch frequently talks about his childhood dreams, such as being a Disney Imagineer, meeting Captain Kirk, playing in the National Football League, being in zero gravity and authoring an article for The World Book. The only one he didn’t accomplish, was playing in the NFL. He actually did everything he dreamed about as a child.

That is so crucial to living your life happily. I believe that anything and everything that someone is passionate about, even if it’s something from when they were six years old, should be pursued. I know a photography major at another school who has been taking pictures obsessively since she was seven. That’s what I’m talking about. Besides, who knows? Someday, you might be Randy Pausch, and really achieve your childhood dreams.

My childhood dream was to work as an anchor for ESPN. I still want to work in sports, as a college athletics video coordinator, video taping practices and games for game tape and the university archive. Sure, it was refined somewhat, but what I want to do is basically in the same vein as my childhood dream. When being asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up,” my answer was “an ESPN anchor.” I still think about that from time to time, even though I’m a freshman in college. I think if you keep the dreams from your youth in the back of your head, you will actively pursue something that you really love. If you like what you do, you will be much happier, and happiness is the key to quality of life.

“Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams” was delivered by a dying man. Pausch had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, one of the most fatal diseases...
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