From the Sea to CBU: Meet Peer Success Mentor Pretty Philip

From a life at sea to a fresh start at Cape Breton University, Pretty Philip has had an interesting journey over the past year. A former sailor, Pretty left her home in South India in 2022 to pursue a Bachelor of Business Administration at CBU. Having spent so much of her time on the water, Pretty wanted to remain close to the sea while studying something she had always been passionate about – business. When she discovered CBU and learned about the program offerings on the Island, Pretty knew it would be the right fit for her. 

Now, more than a year into her academic journey, Pretty has become embedded into the campus community at CBU, taking on the role of a Peer Success Mentor at the University. With a new Week of Welcome around the corner in January, Pretty says she is more than happy to help new students begin their own journeys at CBU. “I am super-excited and eager to connect with new students,” says Pretty. “Supporting new students and witnessing them embark on their academic journey smoothly is fulfilling. I see myself in the face of every student during Week of Welcome, a reminder of my own first day.” 

What Pretty has enjoyed most about CBU so far is the willingness of others to offer help when asked. “I often remember my first day at CBU. I felt unsure and was a bit lost as I walked around the campus,” says Pretty. “However; when I asked for assistance, people were friendly, welcoming and supportive. That’s when I realized I shouldn’t stress too much – if I need something, I can simply ask for it.”  nts to check out the Advising Centre, Writing Centre and Math and Science Centre. These resources offer students success coaching and help with university-level writing, along with tutoring for basic math, science and business courses. 

Peer Success Mentors are also available to assist new students in any way they can. Pretty feels that interactions between students and Peer Success Mentors like herself can set first-year students up for success in their CBU journeys. “When new students are adjusting to a new place, they usually have lots of questions,” Pretty explains. “Our role is to assist students by guiding them on where to find the right academic information and making them aware of CBU’s online programs, such as Start Smart, which will guide them to begin their journey with confidence.” 

Pretty feels she is a perfect fit for the role, as her time at the University has prepared her well. “My experience at CBU has been transformative, providing skills and valuable insights that I believe make me a good fit to help other students as a peer success mentor,” she says. Throughout her time at CBU, Pretty has overcome many different obstacles, ranging from anxiety to mental health struggles. “These difficulties taught me to be strong, find solutions and not hesitate to ask for help,” she says. “I’ve actively used CBU’s academic resources and other support services. This has helped me understand what the University offers and how it can help other students too.”

Pretty plans to use her own experiences to help guide new students, get them started on the right foot and keep them on the right path. She wants students arriving at CBU for the first time to know they can reach out to PSMs with any questions or concerns, or even just to chat. “We can provide guidance and resources to navigate the challenges of university life,” she says. “As fellow students who have experienced the ups and downs of university life, we can offer insights from our own journeys. We can share stories of overcoming obstacles, finding balance and making the most of the opportunities CBU has to offer. Most of all, we are excited to stand by your side and be a part of your experience.”

To connect with a Peer Success Mentor, contact or stop by the Advising Centre.