Throughout my education and career, these quotes from teachers and employers have influenced me and has stayed with me to this day:
"Know your Full Potential", Dr. Julian Julian.
This suprisingly came from my High School English teacher who would always take the time to just "talk" to the entire class. He would always repeat these words and I took it to heart and made it my mission to find out what I enjoyed doing and learning. It's my belief now that electives in High School are not only there to teach you a trade skill. Electives are opportunities to see if that's what you enjoy doing and learning!
"Learn the System!", Cal Poly Chemistry Professor.
This quote definitely had a positive impact in my Chemistry coursework, but it generally applies to most subjects. Most in particular are Math, Physics, and Chemistry, and Genetics. Art has a system when it comes to mixing and matching colors, and Music has a formula of its own! As examples, seek out patterns to help you memorize those Derivatives, Integrals, Trig Functions, the Unit Circle, Krebs Cycle, Protein Codons, the Pentatonic Scale..and so much more. Not everything is logic (left brain). You can exercise your visual side (right brain) to help you learn these patterns and processes which govern the entire "System".
"Calculus is nothing more than complex Algebra", Dr. Anya Kroth.
Simply put. If you succeed through Algebra, you can tackle Calculus. Think of it as a puzzle. You learn one concept the first week, and the next concept the next week. You put them together and you learn another new concept. Repeat and repeat. All you're repeatedly doing is learning new tools to use. By the end you'll see that Integrals are just new ways of calculating the area, surface area, and finally the volume of an algebraic function. That is how and why, today, we can model, simulate, analyze and build many things.
"College doesn't make you smart. College teaches you to be resourceful.", Dr. Roger Conway.
Dr. Conway was the first manager to make a significant impact in my career. Although it was a part-time job in college, it was all new to me; but having the basic knowledge of things and the ability to search for answers, was enough for me to succeed. In general, this statement doesn't just apply to college. It applies to any education at all levels.