The big question on campus has been "Did you hear about Steve Jobs?" On Oct. 5, 2011 Steve Jobs, the revolutionary co-founder of Apple, passed away from complications of pancreatic cancer.
His loss has hit the world of technology, and Apple consumers, hard. Many are left wondering how the company will continue to thrive with the loss of such a unique figurehead as Jobs.
For years, Fordham University classrooms have been lit by the glowing apples on MacBooks. With the prevalence of Apple's technology on campus, Jobs has had an inevitable impact on the students and professors alike.
"My MacBook is my life," Noelle Bohlen, FCRH '12, said. "I work on it, which brings me income. I write computer programs on it for school and design posters or build Web sites."
Apple products have proven to be more than just a fad used for solely entertainment purposes. They are serious machines built for serious workers. According to Dr. Lance Strate, an associate professor in the communications and media studies department, Mac computers have been used on Fordham's campus throughout his two decades as a professor here at Fordham.
"Mac users are known for their loyalty despite all the trouble that went along for the first 10 years or so of the product [Mac computers]," Strate said.
This period of "trouble" was due to Job's resignation as CEO of Apple in 1985, when he left to work for a hardware and software company, NeXt. In 1997, Apple bought NeXt and Steve Jobs returned to his position as CEO; thus, the revival of Apple began.
For Apple customers, Jobs' products are popular because of their advanced and innovative technology, which maintains usability.
"He understood early on that computers are not merely tools or appliances but tools for communication that culminate into a compelling experience with pleasurable aesthetic," Strate said. "Steve Jobs was one of us – super representative. Being a leader isn't be[ing] separated from everyone else, but being a part of everyone else."
Jobs' determination was a large portion of what made him a success and inspiration to budding entrepreneurs, inventors and even the average Joe.
"It is one thing to have a dream, and another to make it happen," Dr. Paul Levinson, an associate professor of communications and media studies, said.
Jobs clearly made his dreams happen. He moved from building computers in his garage to becoming CEO of the world's second richest company.
While Jobs was a college dropout, he still serves as inspiration to college students.
"As students at Fordham University, it is understood that college betters the students," Levinson said. "However, even without a degree, Jobs has provided a lesson that everyone, including students, must follow their inner most powerful dreams [...] But every student must evaluate what they really want [...] and if they have a real dream to peruse then they do what they must."
"If I had never dropped in on that single calligraphy course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts," Jobs once said.
It seems as though Jobs and Apple are so iconic that everyone looks up to him, and that the only people without Apple products are Bill Gates and his family.
When MacBook Pro owner, Amy Gembara, FCRH '14, was asked how she felt about the loss of Jobs, however, her innocent response was "Who's that?"
Besides those who simply are not aware of Jobs, anti-Apple students exist.
"[Jobs] was incredibly rude and insensitive in business relationships. I own no Apple products. Their history with DRM, closed source and standards non-compliance leave me ideologically opposed to the company," Jeff Lockhart, FCRH '13, said.
Regardless of one's personal opinions, Apple and their products will never be quite the same.
"Jobs was unique and quite possibly irreplaceable," Levinson said.
While some fear that Apple will face a downfall, loyal customers have faith in the legacy Jobs built. Others doubt the quality of products to come.
Jobs was diagnosed with cancer in 2005, and planned his business in direct response to that diagnosis. The Apple University was formed in 2009 to train future employees. In addition, Jobs resigned from Apple in Aug. 2011, due to the progression of his illness. While Apple will not be the same, it will be well equipped with Tim Cook as the new CEO.
Ultimately, Jobs' death came as shock, especially since the iPhone 4s was released one day before his death. The Upper West Side Apple store, a few blocks from the Lincoln Center campus, was decorated with flowers, sticky notes and real apples with a single bite taken out of them. Jobs may be gone, but he still lives in the legacy of Apple and hearts of consumers, including students and professors of the Fordham community.