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What inspires you?

As winter term comes to a close and graduation moves ever closer, many seniors (including this one) are starting to worry about what is next.  Graduate school? An internship? Unemployment?

The future is uncertain and all of us are in need of a little encouragement and hope.

On Wednesday evening, Mike Posner, an up and coming musician, asked this of his Facebook friends and Twitter followers: “What inspires you?”

Many replied with “music” or “friends.” But I have to agree with what nearly half of the people responded – “you,” that is, Posner himself. His story gives inspiration and hope to me and many other undergraduates.

In 2009, Posner released two mixtapes and signed a record deal while completing his undergraduate degree at Duke University, and all before reaching age 22.  His immediate success is undeniable.

The first I heard of Posner was New Years Eve when I attended his concert in West Hollywood.  My friends had run across his free mixtapes through word of mouth on the internet and insisted that I had to come with them to the concert.  As a little teaser to what I was about to witness live, they introduced me to this song: “Mirrors Edge”. I was not disappointed.  And I hope you weren’t either.

But it is not the speed of his success that makes him so inspirational, it is the story behind it.  Posner accomplished his dreams during the time we were all being educated about what ours might be.  He produced the majority of his songs in his dorm room. He used the internet and social networking to gain recognition. He coordinated with other artists such as Kid Cudi, Clinton Sparks, and Big Sean. And he worked continually on his music and schooling, even after getting signed a record deal. He is a prime example of how hard work ethic can help you accomplish even the most daunting of dreams.

Perez Hilton captures Posner’s story best:  “Chatting With… Mike Posner”

Success stories such as Posner’s make me hopeful for whatever is to come in my own future. And it gives me motivation and inspiration to work as hard as I can to get what I want out of my career, relationships, and life in general.

So now ask yourself, what inspires you?

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