Inspired By My Students

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Each semester, I give Presentation Skills and Leadership seminars to the After Hours MBA students at Florida International University(FIU). It is an inspirational night every time I do it, because 1/2 of the seminar is me presenting and the other half is the students telling their stories. These are not your run of the mill MBA students.

For the most part, these folks are killing themselves to get an MBA, because they are working a full time gig and they spend their nights getting their MBA. What’s really interesting though is not only that they are burning the midnight oil to accomplish their goals, but their stories epitomize the American dream. Many of them were immigrants that could barely afford to eat when their family came here. One young man had spent 12 years working to get his undergrad degree and now was supporting 2 children and his entire family while studying for his MBA. Another migrated on her own when she was a teen because she believed in her dreams and yet another dreamed as a child that she would move from Brazil to the United States and was living her dream now, too.

One young man faced prison or deployment to Afghanistan as a young man and then carried through and was now well on his way to success, because he wasn’t willing to let anything stand in his way. He didn’t believe in anything buy I can.

These students made me want to pursue my long percolating dream of creating a documentary and in this case to chronicle their lives and their pursuit of their goals. I’m not taking the time to do it at this moment, but their stories are so compelling, that they would make a great movie.

All of these students have struggled and persevered in their own way to overcome obstacles and accomplish their goals and I am inspired every time I get to hear their stories. They are smart, driven, and caring people and I was honored to teach them and hear them tell why they were doing what they were doing to better themselves.

Thank you to all the FIU MBA students for teaching me something new every class I teach and inspiring me every time I teach there.

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