By the time I was a junior at Ohio State, I knew that a) i was fascinated with personal computers, and that b) despite my electrical engineering education, I did not actually want to be an engineer. So I was wondering what to do post-college, and a very good friend of the family who was CEO of a tech company in Los Gatos hosted me for a week visit. He set up interviews for me with Bob Noyce, Gene Amdahl, Steve Jobs, and several other notables. The trip was an eye-opener for a kid from Ohio — the west coast was an awakening, and these guys were heroes to me. I remember Steve challenging me very directly on my plans — I was a bit conservative and a conformist, I probably seemed pretty dull to him, but I certainly got a lot out of the visit, I was motivated to raise my sights higher.
About the same time I remember reading the “Byte Smalltalk issue”:http://c2.com/cgi/wiki?SmalltalkIssueOfByte and was entranced, my view of computing dramatically expanded.
A few years later I scrimped to buy the first Mac on the first day it was available to students, and was enthralled.
My career took zigs and zags and I never met Steve again or worked at Apple, but my meeting with him and my engagement with his products certainly set my direction.
Wishing him the best.