Project 1:

  • Research a 'successful' INDIVIDUAL from the past or present (Jesus, Abe Lincoln, Michael Jordon, Oprah, Obama, etc.)
  • Create a list of personal qualities/characteristics that led to that person's success
  • Describe the set of circumstances that led this person's success
  • Describe why you perceive them to be successful
Luke Skywalker: Jedi Master

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  • Was often very stubborn and iron-willed
  • Was driven to find out the truth about his father and to bring an end to the Dark Side
  • Was very naive and untrained, but also incredibly powerful with immense amounts of untapped power from the Force
  • Was often very confrontational and boneheaded, often wanting to just charge into battle instead of thinking out a plan
  • Fell in love with the beautiful Princess Leia

  • Was born on the desert planet of Tatooine, called by his friend Ben Kenobi (Obi-Wan Kenobi) to train as a Jedi
  • Joined the Rebel Alliance that fought against the tyrannical Empire.
  • Was a key figure in one of the greatest wars in the age of intergalactic warfare

Why he is successful:
Luke is successful because he essentially single-handedly took down the Dark Side and destroyed the Death Star. He also killed his father, Darth Vader or Anikan Skywalker, and the fearsome Emperor, the leader of the Dark Side. Luke also succeeds in rescuing Princess Leia from the Death Star, evacuates the Rebel base Hoth because it was discovered by the Empire, becomes and Jedi Master, and saves Han Solo from Jaba the Hutt who had encased him in a block of carbonite. Luke is arguably the most powerful, and definitely the most influential, Jedi of all time.
Ben Folds:
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Qualities / Characteristics:
  • Became attached to a piano at the age of 9 which his father received as payment for work.
  • Played in more than 7 bands before acheiving commercial success with his band Ben Folds Five and his solo career
  • Reportedly spent more than six months working on scales with a metronome
  • Always knew he wanted to be a musician, and it was this incredible drive that made him work as hard as he needed to be as successful as he is
  • Listened to Elton John and Billy Joel, figured out songs by ear, was never trained when he was a child
  • Ended up going to college for drumming at Miami's Frost School of Music, dropped out with one credit left to graduate, broke his hand partying the day before a jury performance, lost his scholarship
  • Incredibly creative and original, always likes to push the envelope and be experimental

Why he is successful:

Ben Folds is successful because he is one of the more well-known pop-artists today. He performs gigs all around the world, with his album Way to Normal reaching the 11th most popular album in 2006. He has released seven solo LP's since 2000, four of which being internet exclusive EP's. He is an excellent pianist in many different genres of play-style, and he is an excellent performer.

Project 3:
  • Create a list of personal qualities/characteristics that were the same for both people in project 1 & 2
  • Were there similarities between each person's set of circumstances that led to their success?

    Similar Personal Qualities / Characteristics:
    • They both began as being very naive, but eventually developed a very mature sense of Music for Folds and the Force for Skywalker.
    • They both had an incredible drive to accomplish their goals. Folds knew that he wanted to be a musician from a very young age, and completely devoted himself to this. Skywalker was driven to find out the truth about his father, as well as to bring an end to the Empire. The incredible determination in these two individuals was tantamount to their success.
    • Both were very untrained individuals who slowly received training from experience and wise individuals. Skywalker was introduced to the force by Obi-Wan Kenobi, which turned into his most powerful weapon, and Folds' only real training was at school in the Frost School of Music, but he learned from observation and listening to other pianists. They were both highly influenced by their peers.
Similar Circumstances:
    • Both Folds and Skywalker came from backgrounds of obscurity. Skywalker lived a destitute life on the desert planet Tatooine, and Folds lived in a rough neighborhood of New York with his father being a house remodeler.
    • Despite their humble backgrounds, both rose to immense success. Skywalker brought an end to the Empire and to the Dark Side at large, and Folds has become an immensely popular musician.
    • Both were very creative in their fields. Skywalker was driven by the force and drew strategies from every Jedi he met, while Folds was always pushing the envelope in his music and attempting to be something new.
Both Skywalker and Folds were incredibly driven to accomplish their goals. They were aided by their peers and mentors, but ultimately what made them successful was their incredible desire to be successful. They had the mindset of success, so they were successful. They worked tirelessly and beleived, above all, that what they were doing had a purpose.