By Mercy Hill
Success is not final and failure not fatal, it is the courage to continue that counts. Often, we find ourselves in unfavourable situations and start wondering why everything goes wrong only with us! Life is unbiased and time tests everyone, even the people that are reaching stars today have gone through rough times. Here are some most inspirational people of the twenty-first century to look up to when life is not all mellow.
Mark Zuckerberg has transitioned from a college drop-out to the youngest billionaire on this planet. From early ages, he always excelled in school and was considered amongst the top students. This brilliant mind got admission in Harvard University, one of the best schools in world. While in college, he made many websites who got controversially popular as one of them encouraged people to judge others on the basis of appearance. Later with his friends, he launched ‘The Facebook’ (now, Facebook) which became an instant hit. Today, Facebook has over 700 million users! Apart from being an entrepreneur, Zuckerberg is a philanthropist and invests a lot in projects all over the world to connect more and more people to the internet.
Desmond Tutu is a South African social rights activist and Bishop. He is known for his colossal work against apartheid in South Africa. Blacks in Africa were denied the right to vote and were forced to live in some specific isolated areas, Tutu raised his voice against the mistreatment and supported an economic boycott of his country. His work however was not only limited to Apartheid. He campaigned to fight against sexism, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, poverty, homophobia and transphobia. He was awarded by the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984. His achievements have instilled a pride in every student, a faith that everything is possible, and we can become what the potential in us says we can become.
Bill Gates believed in achieving goals through hard work. The richest man on Earth, Gates is the co-founder of Microsoft Corporation. He was only 15 years old when he developed a software to optimize road traffic and sold it for $20,000! When he opened Microsoft, he could not afford a pro sales manager which affected his products distribution and hence got his mom to do the job. Bill Gates was the first to propose that software needed to be protected too like other works. This has hugely contributed to today’s software systems.
Patrick Henry Hughes:
Patrick Henry Hughes is a super-talented, hard-working musician who was born without eyes and with crippled limbs making him unable to walk. His father introduced him to piano at an exceedingly early age of 9 months! His talent was spotted by the media and was later invited to play piano and sing at various places throughout the country. In 2008, he published his own book called ‘I Am Potential’. The recipient of many National Awards, this 28-year-old blind, wheelchair bound guy does not fail to inspire the world.
He is the first Latin-American to lead a Roman Catholic Church. He is characterized by his humility, and an outspoken support for the poor and needy. He actively participates in environmental and political debates. He has a fondness for music and dancing. He is recognized as one of the most outspoken Popes of all times.
He is the first black person to ever become President of the United States. That’s not it, he won the presidency twice in a row in 2008 and 2012. He faced a lot of challenges while in power. America was officially declared in ‘recession’ and he boosted the economy and helped struggling financial institutions.
Every time you see that black man, you would see hope. By becoming the first African American President, Barack Obama has created the idea that anything is possible within the black community. And he has proved it, that is the most important thing in the world.
Ben Underwood was a blind teenager that ‘sees’ with echolocation! He was diagnosed with retinal cancer at the age of two and had both of his eyes removed. He defied blindness as a disability. So, what is echolocation after all and how does it help him ‘see’ things? Echolocation is a technique used by bats, dolphins and a lot of other animals to navigate and determine where objects are in space by sending out sound waves using the echoes to derive their distance from the person. While echolocation is tough to learn, Underwood became so good at this that he could even differentiate between a truck and a car and even the different materials. He died at the age of 16 as the cancer grew to his brain and spine but this magical kid will inspire us for years.
Malala Yousafzai took a bullet in the head for what a lot of us take for granted, education. She is a Pakistani women’s education right activist. At the mere age of 11, she started writing blogs for BBC on the conditions of girl’s education in Pakistan, for which she constantly received life threats and was later shot by a Taliban gunman. She survived and spoke more wisely, articulately and strongly than ever. She received a Nobel Peace Prize in 2014 for her tremendous work in this field.