As any sports enthusiast knows, inspiration creates motivation for success. On a personal level, you don’t have to be inspired to get up at six in the morning to jog before work (you just need a desire to stay healthy), but if you are, you will not only notice that the sky is blue and the way the gravel crunches nicely under your shoes as you run; you will also look forward to getting up the next morning and run again. And at work you don’t have to be inspired to perform your duties, but if you are, you will see new ways to solve problems otherwise daunting, and inspire your colleagues in turn through your enthusiasm and passion.
When it comes to studies, inspiration doesn’t come easy. To succeed throughout all of your years in primary school, high school, and possibly during university and PhD-studies, you need curiosity and interest in your chosen subject. This curiosity can be increased, maintained, or erased by the people you meet throughout your life. The Berzelius days in Stockholm for High School final-year students are aimed to increase it, and I have had the privilege both to be inspired (I especially remember Professor Göran Rämme and his soap bubbles), and then later come back to try to inspire in my turn. I believe it is of utmost importance that we all take the time and make the effort to inspire students so that they increase their natural curiosity and bring it into their studies. Then they can excel through their own motivation and drive, and later become the inventors of revolutionary new products, writers of stirring novels or discoverers of life-saving medicines.