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make (one's) mark
To do something that will be remembered or that makes one famous or successful; to do something that is very important or meaningful. The actress first made her mark with her incredible performance as Lady Macbeth on Broadway. I chose to pursue a career in medical research so that I might someday make my mark in the world with a groundbreaking discovery.
make one's mark
to do something that allows one to receive appropriate recognition. Perry made his mark by inventing a special kind of holder for a cell phone.