2024 Saints Spotlight Sean Green '21

2024 Saints Spotlight Sean Green ’21

In this edition of Saints Spotlight, we sit down with Sean Green ’21 and hear about his experience at Thomas More University and his journey into publishing his first children’s book.

David Klenk: Hello and welcome back to another edition of Saint Spotlight today I’m joined by Sean Green class of 2021. Thank you so much for joining us today Sean!

Sean Green: Well thank you for having me.

 DK: So starting off, would you mind sharing with us what led you to choose Thomas More University?

SG: So my dad along with his mother and my grandmother came here. It was a cheap way to get there because you get a discount when there’s family that had been at Thomas More, so in a way I kind of took the easy way around there. But also it’s because  I wanted to kind of really just go out into the world and go discover new things and everything.

DK: Would you mind telling us about your experience here at Thomas More as a student with autism?

SG: It was very hard until the second semester of my first year. It got a little bit easier because thankfully the Institute of Learning Differences, ILD for short came thanks to Amy Osborne the first director that was there. She along with everyone else who worked in ILD was very helpful to me because they helped me get organized. Not that I wasn’t, but I was able to understand more with the tutors, and when they elaborated on it more even if it was vague or I just couldn’t understand. It got easier with each year basically.

DK: That’s the way it should be, with experience and knowledge building off of each other, and the ILD has been a tremendous success and proof with you. 

So what were some of the obstacles you had to overcome and what were some of the tools you used to become successful? 

SG: I learned a lot about why I need to take things a lot more seriously such as my studies and just basically study harder than I had before. With the help of the tutors in the ILD it helped a lot. I could get my work done and not forget, they were able to remind me if I had forgotten which rarely happened.

DK: right on. Now about your book Dwayne, can you talk a little bit about your inspiration for it and your process of writing and illustrating the book?

SG: Dwayne was basically my imaginary friend when I was a kid. The name Dwayne just came out of nowhere, you don’t really hear a lot of people except for the Rock and Dwayne Wade but now you have Dwayne The Abominable Snowman! At first, I didn’t really think I was going to ever write about this character until Sherry Cook Stanforth who is a professor at Thomas More University. She told me that I really needed to get into children’s literature which I did and it just kind of happened. We had a class assignment where she said “Oh you should do a children’s story” and I did Dwayne. Now I will say that I didn’t really get anything published until after I was out of college, I tried doing it while I was in college but it just life got busy. The process at first was very hard, it was very stressful. Mainly because I’m a first-time author, it got easier later on but I had to learn technology like how to illustrate on a computer instead of like a notepad. It was just like with college, it just got easier with the process and everything.

DK: What was your favorite part of the story to write or if you don’t mind us spoiling the book, do you have a favorite page or or illustration that you worked on? 

SG: I will say that I like all the pages don’t get me wrong, but if I had to choose one it would definitely be the dance party. That’s a lot of people’s favorite, just having a party and having a good time. 

DK: Do you plan on writing any other additional books?

SG: Yes, I’m actually in the process of working on my second book. I’m almost done with it and really hoping to get it released this summer. This will be the first time I actually reveal the title but it’ll be called Camp Fuzzyfazoo. It is about a boy that goes to summer camp and learns how to just basically have fun and just go out in the world and travel instead of just staying home and doing nothing.

DK: That sounds like a lot of fun and a lot more fun to create. 

Lastly, do you have any advice for current students?

SG: Advice for current students, I would say just don’t give up on your dreams. If you have a dream just work on it, it might be hard but you’ll realize that it is a part of the journey. If you work hard you’re going to get there eventually.

DK: Right on well it has been a pleasure to listen to you thank you for the the world reveal of your next book and thank you again so much for sitting down and talking with us. Thank you all back home for joining us for another edition of Saint Spotlight be sure to tune in the next one.