08/19/2014 07:36 pm ET Updated Aug 20, 2014

James Foley Speaks To Students About Journalism, Courage And What Inspired Him (VIDEO)

Just two weeks after he was released from a Libyan prison in 2011, American photojournalist James Foley sat before young students at his alma mater, Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism, to share his ordeal and talk about the difficulties and rewards of reporting from dangerous corners of the globe.

"The most amazing thing about any [education] is getting someone who inspires you," Foley told the audience. He also encouraged students to ask tough questions and "talk to as many people as you can on both sides of the spectrum."

After returning to the Middle East to cover the conflict in Syria, Foley was taken hostage in November 2012 while freelancing for the Boston-based international news organization GlobalPost.

On Tuesday, Foley was reported to have been beheaded by the Islamic State, a militant group formerly known as ISIS.