Professor Cameron is one of the most accommodating profs I have ever had. Dr. Cameron is very aware of the struggle students go through specifically in high volume work times, constantly asking what we need whether it was more time with assignments or advice on how to structure classes, keeping our mental health in mind. Dr. Cameron creates a judgement-free space for her students. She provides all relevant resources on the OnQ page and her lectures/emails, doesn't shy away from discussing hard topics and reminds us to care for ourselves. Great to see profs who genuinely care about the well-being of their students and want to hear about their successes even outside of her course.
Mental health is an issue about which I care very much. I am still learning about mental health, but I currently understand it to refer to one's mental and emotional well-being, their ability to navigate stressors in work in life as well as their need for support in place to reach desired goals.
I believe in universal course design and support the idea of flexible deadlines to accommodate students' different learning needs as well as unanticipated challenges that may arise and prevent a student from reaching their potential. I also let students' know repeatedly throughout the course that I am available for, and enjoy, help with assignments or general course support. I also check in throughout the course, both through general discussion as well as online forums, to see how the assignment schedule is working and/or if I need to make adjustments to the workload in order to support students during periods of extra stress--to see, for example, if my deadlines conflict with other courses' and/or if there is a way I can better "scaffold" or build upon prior assignments.
We, as educators, have a key role to play in our student's academic success by finding ways to support their mental health. We can transform our courses into places where students feel supported in their efforts to learn while reducing stressors. Of course, this has been vitally important during the pandemic.
Just that mental health is so vitally important now, during this pandemic, which has no doubt exacerbated feelings of anxiety and possibly alienation among our students. I am committed to supporting my students during these difficult learning circumstances.
--- Brooke Cameron