If you talk to any successful person they’ll almost always credit one or more books as major contributors to their success. Some of these books may have inspired or motivated them while others gave them the technical knowledge they needed for advancement.
As a college student, now is the perfect time to gain as many perspectives from people of all walks of life. Like you, many of these authors had to overcome obstacles to achieve their goals so it’s inspiring to hear their stories and advice. Admittedly, with so many great books that have a positive impact on college students, it was hard for me to narrow the list down to just five. Nonetheless, I believe the books below will help provide a solid foundation for personal and professional success throughout your life.
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey – Written over 25 years ago, this book has been hailed as “one of the most inspiring and impactful books ever written.” Millions of people from all walks of life, including Presidents and CEOs, have been captivated by its transforming message. Students will find timeless wisdom and advice for pursuing their goals, whatever they may be.
The Start-up of You: Adapt to the Future, Invest in Yourself, and Transform Your Career – by Reid Hoffman and Ben Casnocha – Written by LinkedIn cofounder and Chairman Reid Hoffman, The Start-up of You is “A blueprint for thriving in your job and building a career by applying the lessons of Silicon Valley's most innovative entrepreneurs.” The book dispenses invaluable advice for building a sustainable career in a quickly evolving job market. A must for any student who wants to learn the essentials of thriving in the modern workforce.
Who Moved My Cheese by Spencer Johnson – This book is essential reading to help you embrace the changes that you’ll encounter as you pursue your degree, graduate, and advance your career. The author believes that change can be good or bad, depending on perspective and teaches you how to transform change into opportunity.
This Is Water: Some Thoughts, Delivered on a Significant Occasion, about Living a Compassionate Life by David Foster Wallace – Probably the best and most important graduation speech ever given, This is Water has now been reprinted as an essay in book form. The speech was originally delivered during the commencement ceremonies at Kenyon College on May 21, 2005. Its message will help students of all ages understand the impact of education on their personal lives; that the true freedom acquired through education is the ability to be adjusted, conscious, and sympathetic.
I am Malala by Malala Yousafzai – Written by the youngest nominee ever for the Nobel Peace Prize, I Am Malala reminds us of how precious education is and how much of a difference one willful, rebellious person can make. Gunned down in 2012 by Taliban for fighting for her right to an education, she has since become a global activist for education rights. This is her inspiring story told in her own words.
We’re always eager to hear your book suggestions. What books would you add to the list that have inspired you or helped you to achieve success?