Randolph Frederick "Randy" Pausch (October 23, 1960 – July 25, 2008) was a college professor at Carnegie Mellon University. He was born in Baltimore, Maryland and grew up in Columbia, Maryland where he enrolled at Oakland Mills High School. He received his bachelor degree in Computer Science at Brown University and in 1997 Pausch became a professor of Computer Science, Human-Computer Interaction, and Design at Carnegie Mellon University. It was at this university where Randy Pausch encouraged students to use their imagination and where he delivered his famous last lecture - “Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams” on September 18, 2007, a year after he was diagnosed with terminal cancer.
Randy Pausch married Jai Glascow in 2000 and had three children: Logan, Chloe, and Dylan. After learning that he had less than six months to live, he decided to deliver his last lecture to leave a legacy for his students, co-workers, family and most importantly, his children. His speech became a New York Times Bestseller, The Last Lecture, co-written with Jeffrey Zaslow, a columnist at The Wall Street Journal. While his speech was meant mainly for his children, it soon became an inspirational book and video, which encouraged people to really chase after their childhood dreams, to always persevere, and to have a positive outlook on life. Randy Pausch passed away on July 25, 2008 due to complications from pancreatic cancer at home in Chesapeake, Virginia.