Western Courier

Mathis humbled by collegiate experiences

Mathis succeeds at Western with his pleasant and outgoing personality, despite his hardships he faced in his past.

Mathis succeeds at Western with his pleasant and outgoing personality, despite his hardships he faced in his past.

File Photo

File Photo

Mathis succeeds at Western with his pleasant and outgoing personality, despite his hardships he faced in his past.

Isaiah Herard, News Editor

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Western Illinois University senior Sean Mathis, 21, of Chicago, Ill. is notorious for his headstrong, fearless and gentle personality. Although he is a native of the gritty and impoverished ghettos of Chicago, Mathis still maintains a kind nature and loving spirit.

 “Although many people allow their environment to dictate how they act and associate with others, that has never stopped me from wanting to be better than where I come from,” Mathis said. “The stigma that comes from living in the city is an awful one and I’ve never wanted to associate myself with that. I strive to maintain a kind nature in order to never have assumptions made of me due to where I come from.”

 Mathis said enrolling in Western in 2014 was the most epiphanic moment in his life because it allowed a fresh start and enhancement for his life.

 “My personal goals and ambition keeps me going every day. The most impactful moment that helped me shape me into the person I am today was when I finally stepped onto Western Illinois Campus. That day I decided to reinvent myself into someone much more than who I was previously.”

 Mathis’ parents are a major reason that he is the wholesome young man he is today. Like his mother, who worked for Chicago Transit Authority for 23 years, he hopes to one day surpass her work ethic and become like his father, who assumed entrepreneurship at an early age and worked solely for himself before serving as the Assistant Vice President in City Group’s IT department.

 “My parents have influenced me to be the most generous individual that I can be through my consistent actions,” Mathis said. “The main lesson I’ve learned from my parents is to be respectful to everyone I encounter. Being respectful is a character trait that has been instilled in me from the beginning of my life.”

 According to Mathis, failure is a natural facet of life. Without it, he wouldn’t understand the trials and tribulations that must be endured to be successful.

 “The biggest obstacle that I’ve had to overcome in life is understanding that it’s okay to not be the best at something all the time,” Mathis said. I’ve had to learn that on occasion, it’s okay to fail. Failure gives you an opportunity to learn and grow.”

 During his leisure time, Mathis enjoys the soothing, jazzy keys of the piano, enjoying quality time with his friends and engaging in extracurricular activities such as basketball and baseball. Although he is a novice on the piano, he has mastered nearly three songs in a short time span.

 “I can be described as ambitious, motivating, giving, and caring. I enjoy hanging out with friends, playing basketball, playing baseball and watching ted talks,” Mathis said. I am currently working on improving my piano skills. I’ve been practicing for a little under 7 months now and I’ve learned about three songs.”

 Despite life’s unpredictable circumstances, Mathis strives to be successful and believes proper preparation will prevent poor performance.

 “A personal philosophy that I live by is that success only happens to those individuals who properly prepare for it,” Mathis said. “In 10 years, I see myself as a well-known and respected computer scientist and businessman by my colleagues.”

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The independent student newspaper of Western Illinois University. Serving Macomb since 1905.
Mathis humbled by collegiate experiences