January's Student of the Month: Camille Bou

Camille Bou
Monday, February 6, 2017 - 12:42pm

Our Student of the Month for January is Camille Bou. Camille is a fourth year international student from France, studying Psychology and Biology for Health Sciences. She works on residence as a Peer Academic Leader for the Biology Living Learning Community.  This month Camille dedicated her time to promoting mental health and engaging students in open conversations about mental health in order to reduce stigma. She participated in a series of 3 vlogs to promote Bell Let’s Talk, which included topics such as researched information about mental health, ways to challenge stigma, and how to cope with stress to avoid burnout, a problem, many students face.


She was also selected to be a part of the Healthy Campus Crew’s UTMental vloggers, continuing on the route to reducing stigma by openly talking about mental health. “My role is to release 4 vlogs in the month of February, with the goal of connecting students with the resources they might need, as well as engage them in the fight against mental health stigma”


What are some of your goals for the future?


1) I'm planning to graduate at the end of this school year and I hope to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology in the UK or Australia. I want to help people suffering from a mental illness by having my own practice or practicing in hospitals. I also hope to pursue research about mental illnesses so as to contribute to reducing the stigma and legitimizing mental illnesses. 


What Motivates you?


2) What motivates me is my thirst for knowledge. It continuously motivates me to seek out new experiences to learn from. I believe that every opportunity in life is a chance for you to learn and grow. Another motivator for me is my fear of regret - therefore, I try to join as many opportunities as I can and I always try my best in all of them! 


How has providing for various students on and off campus impacted your life?


3) Providing for students on and off campus has impacted my undergraduate experience immensely. Through my involvement, I found meaning in my time as a student. It has made my four years fruitful because through every experience I was able to connect with people and build skills, which enhanced my personal growth outside of the classroom. As an international student with no relatives or family friends in Ontario, it really enabled me to call UTM my home.



Here are Camille's Top 5 Tip for the Campus Community


1) Step out of your comfort zone! 

Outside of that comfort zone is where the magic happens. If you're feeling scared to take a chance on something, ask yourself "What's the worse that could happen?" - and you'll usually find that the main obstacle in your way is your own self


2) You come first

In order to perform at your best (and that includes helping other people), you need to feel your best physically and mentally. You can't pour from an empty cup - so know your limits and when it's time for you to indulge in some self-care. The people you are helping and the tasks you are undertaking will thank you


3) Bounce Back

Change the way you think about failure. This one is especially challenging for me because I'm very hard on myself and I put a lot of pressure on myself to succeed (I'm sure you can relate!). But I always try to think of failure as a learning experience for the next time something big happens!


4) Surround yourself with positive individuals

Find mentors, and build healthy relationships with other students. Trust your gut - if a friendship/romantic relationship feels strange, maybe that's a conversation you want to have with that friend/partner - or maybe it's a relationship you need to re-evaluate


5) Let go of what you can't control

This is another aspect of building resilience and reduce over-worrying/thinking. The only thing you are responsible for are the variables you can control - your feelings, your performance at work or on a test for example. The variables you can't control - the feelings of others, the marking of that test - you shouldn't be over-stressing about them. If you tried your best, according to your standards, then you should be proud.