ICES November Student of the Month


We are pleased to congratulate Camilla from Italy for being selected as ICES’s Student of the Month for November!  Camilla was nominated by her host mother, who gave many examples of how Camilla embodies the spirit of youth exchange in her character, academics, service, courage, and ambition.

Camilla is living with the Colburn family in Hamilton, Alabama, where she excels in all academic areas and has made a profound impact on her teachers and peers.  Her dedication is evident, and so is her desire to inspire others to love learning.  She is committed to helping others through tutoring or even quickly explaining how to solve a problem after the bell rings. Her Physics teacher said that some days he feels like there is nothing new to teach Camilla.  Instead, he and the whole class are learning from her.

Artistic endeavors are a major part of Camilla’s life. Drawing, journaling, and singing are hobbies that help her relax and express her creativity. As a good Italian, her natural love for cooking scrumptious food is evident. She loves cooking with her mother and grandmother to learn recipes that have been in her family for generations. She now shares those recipes and cooking tips with the world on her culinary Instagram page. She loves helping her host mom cook and is teaching her many new recipes. She can often be found at her friends’ houses cooking up an entire Italian spread.


camilla9Camilla is also committed to exercising and playing sports daily. To her, being active is a great way to improve one’s quality of life. At Hamilton High School, she is part of the varsity volleyball team.  Her volleyball coach, Mrs. Williams, commented on how well she interacted with and encouraged her teammates. Mrs. Williams also praises her solid focus on the job given at all times.


Community service is a huge part of Camilla’s life. She describes it as a way to put her faith into action and experience the  joy of helping those in need. Since her arrival in Alabama, she has continued to serve others through the local church youth group as well as helping at the elementary school whenever possible.



Camilla does not shy away from a new experience. Being out of her comfort zone is exactly where she wants to be this year! She has made many friends and experienced so many great things America has to offer. She has become a football enthusiast and a proud member of the “Dawg Pound”, Hamilton High School’s student section. Last month she decided to be compete in a beauty pageant and now holds the title of Miss January 2020. She is beautiful and certainly worthy of this honor.




Her host mother says she is always willing to help with chores and usually does way more than is asked of her. She is a great big sister to her host brothers, always ready to play and draw with them. She and one host brother are currently doing a 30-day drawing challenge. He aspires to be an artist and Camilla undoubtedly helps him dream big and believe it is possible.


camilla8Camilla is in a double placement with another ICES student, to whom she has grown extremely close. The girls are truly like sisters, and the host mother says watching them love and care for one another has been empowering. Girls are not all about drama- they can and do support each other!


Camilla wants to attend college in Milan, Italy and earn a degree in Nutrition. She aspires to treat and educate young people struggling with eating disorders. She will later continue her education and focus on collaborating with oncologists on interdisciplinary research. Camilla beat cancer at the very young age of four and wants to dedicate her career to helping find a cure for this horrible disease. Camilla’s host mom says, “It is exciting and overwhelming to think that the cure to cancer could be living right under my roof!”

"I am not sure what I did to deserve the honor of hosting her, but I am so glad that I get to watch her accomplish all her goals and make the world a better place.” 

-Ana, host mom of Camilla


Camilla’s host mom has many wonderful things to say about Camilla, but believes that her kindness is certainly her most striking quality. Her host mother says, “She is a friend to all and the most genuinely kind human being I have ever met. To know Camilla, is to love Camilla. I am not sure what I did to deserve the honor of hosting her, but I am so glad that I get to watch her accomplish all her goals and make the world a better place.”


All of us at ICES are proud to have Camilla on program and want to give her our most profound thanks for her outstanding job of representing the program and her home country of Italy. Her kindness, diligence, and commitment to excellence beautifully exemplify the spirit of ICES by bringing people together and making the world a better place.


As student of the month, Camilla will receive a $100 gift card, an ICES t-shirt, and a letter of recognition from ICES President, John Crist.


Do you know an ICES student who embodies the spirit of ICES by being an awesome exchange student?

Perhaps they have done a beautiful job of integrating into their host family and culture, found creative ways to share their culture, or given back to the host community by volunteering.  There are many ways ICES students excel, and this program is not limited to specific criteria.  If you feel your student is awesome, nominate them!

Guidelines for Nominating a Student

  1. Tell us why your student is outstanding, including specific examples.  If you wish, you may also include statements from school staff, the host family, or others in the community.
  2. Include the student’s full name, home country, and host city/state.
  3. Include at least one (but preferably more) photos of the student.
  4. Email submissions to


Tags: Exchange Student, Student of the Month

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