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What's the most important lesson you learned in college?

Hard work beats talent.

My Philosophy of Religion professor is known for his high standards.

Students literally crying after going through 15 minutes of his oral exam is not unusual.

Schoolmates from older batches say it is impossible to get an A; “You get a B, at most”.

But I was set on getting that perfect score.

Philosophy is my favorite subject and there is no way I am going to settle for mediocrity.

So, I prepared for that oral exam like my life depended on it.

I remember sitting at the 24hr coffee shop (Bo’s Coffee) across my university at 2:00 AM preparing for the terrifying oral exam scheduled the next day at 9:00 am. Prior to that all night, I spent at least 2 hours a day for a week preparing for that test.

The fruitful day came and after the 15 minutes exam, my professor said something that I’ll never forget: “Here is all I can say- I wish more students were like you.”

I got an A from his class.

This terror professor later on became my good mentor and thanks to him I got in my current graduate school (he wrote my recommendation letter).

Point is, I am not any smarter than my classmates. But one thing I know is that I poured all my heart into learning and mastering that Philosophy class.

Hard work coupled with direction reaps high rewards.

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