Meet Camille Marsan
Meet Camille Marsan, a fifth-year Hospitality studies student at ESSEC Business School in France. With a background in operational roles across various hotel departments, including F&B and reception, Camille is currently working in the finance department of the “OKKO” hotel group. As she eyes more strategic positions, she’s gearing up for an audit mission to gain a broad understanding of different hotels and their operations. Camille brings a hands-on approach and a strategic mindset, poised to make her mark in the hospitality industry.
Q: Why did you choose to study Hospitality Management?
After high school, I had no idea what I wanted to do ‘for life,’ as they asked. I went to work in China (Yunan) at a hotel managed by a former monk. He employed people from ethnic minorities who found themselves face to face with Western expatriate customers on ‘city breaks.’ It was fascinating to see all these different backgrounds coming together. The strength of sharing and passing on the knowledge of this profession captivated me. After this experience, it was clear: hospitality is meant for me
Q: Why are you passionate about hospitality? What makes this industry unique?
My passion for hospitality is fueled by its ability to take me ‘anywhere,’ its demand for creative problem-solving ‘anyhow,’ and its commitment to serving others ‘whenever.’ The uniqueness of this industry lies in its dynamic nature, from the hands-on interactions directly serving customers, to the strategic positions that shape the broader hospitality landscape.
Q: What are the biggest challenges as a student in hospitality?
Hospitality is a people business so one thing important to me is to motivate people to enter into the hospitality industry and to find passion in it. Then, second challenge as a student: How I am going to breakthrough in this industry? What will make the difference? We want the industry to evolve and its on us. Big pressure!
Q: The hospitality industry – as many others – faces the challenge of attracting and retaining talent. Do you have any thoughts on this that you would like to share with us?
We are experiencing a real crisis since Covid. I am certain of one thing: a crisis does not create problems; it highlights and reinforces them. We all have the feeling that the recruitment system is outdated. Changing the pace of work, restoring the feeling that one’s job has meaning? Making work a true living space? The possibilities are numerous, and gradually, stakeholders are taking the plunge and daring to shake things up. We, students in hospitality management, must instigate change and propose fresh and innovative ideas.
Q: Why did you decide to join the HSMAI Europe Student Council?
Last year, along with 2 colleagues, we won the student challenge for the annual MKG hospitality awards. This experience allowed us to forge strong connections with various industry stakeholders through interviews, exchanges, and debates.
I saw an opportunity through the HSMAI Europe Student Council to engage with other students, actively contribute to shaping the school environment, fostering leadership skills, and representing the diverse interests and concerns of the student body
Q: How is HSMAI Europe Student Council helping your studies/students?
The student council is deeply committed to providing a rich array of events, tools, and programs tailored to students across Europe. I am confident that, over time, the council will evolve into a reference point for students pursuing studies in hospitality. By consistently offering valuable resources and fostering a sense of community, it has the potential to significantly enhance the educational journey for aspiring professionals in the field.
Q: What is your dream job when you graduate?
I believe I have gained a comprehensive understanding of hospitality (working in hotels). I have delved into sales, and for the past 2 years, I’ve been involved in finance. At the end of my master’s degree, I am eager to transition into internal audit. I see this as an opportunity to deepen my knowledge in key areas such as finance, quality, and processes, across various hotel profiles and management styles. This will equip me with the necessary skills to, in the medium term, attain leadership positions within hotels.