NC State University officials in SHOCK after losing four students to suicide during fall semester
RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA: The North Carolina State University is taking active steps to prevent suicide after four students took their life this semester. Grieving university officials revealed how they lost another student to suicide on Thursday, November 10. The male sophomore was found dead in a residence hall room at the Wolf Village Apartments.
A university spokesperson confirmed that the institute had lost five students in total this semester — four to suicide and one in an off-campus car accident. The unprecedented spate of deaths has shocked the school's student body, who were in mourning once again after the latest incident was reported Friday morning, November 11.
“When I heard about the first one, it really hit. Another one happened. Then another happened and one happened yesterday. I don’t know what to do anymore,” Jodie Horne, a senior at the university, told WTVD.
The university hosted a campus-wide Wellness Day for students about a week ago. Classes were reportedly canceled and students were instead told to focus on their mental health and talk to their families. The university offered students a range of calming activities, including yoga, crafts, video games, and guided walks. “Words can’t express how sad and difficult this is for our students and campus,” NC State said in a statement. “The university is pouring every resource we have available into reaching our students in need and providing them support and guidance. Our staff and medical professionals are working around the clock to help steer students to the many resources currently available, and we’ve asked our new student mental health task force to develop additional short-term and long-term strategies to help our students.”
Vice Chancellor and Dean for @NCStateDASA Doneka Scott announces a new group to address the mental health and well-being of the Pack.— NC State University (@NCState) November 11, 2022
Read more about the university-wide Student Mental Health Task Force, including how you can share your feedback: https://t.co/0Z6OzuE5SE pic.twitter.com/VngMvRa6Es
Some students admitted they were under significant academic pressure that could be affecting their mental health. “I know that’s one of the things that bothers me a lot. So I understand where that struggle comes from. The need to succeed is big pressure,” chemical engineering major Alessandro Dal Pra told WTVD. Many are trying to beat the stress by turning to activities as a reprieve. “I just keep going. Try not to stay stagnated. I go to the gym or find something to do,” computer science major Aaron Hills told the outlet.
In 2019, suicide was the second leading cause of death for people aged 10 to 18, and the third leading cause of death for those in the 19-34 range, according to the NC State Center for Health and Statistics. Kamala Uzzell, a local psychotherapist who is familiar with the university's counseling center, said officials are doing everything they can to support students. However, it still needs more doing considering the sprawling college has an undergraduate enrollment of over 26,000 students per annum. “If there is any failing, it’s that we need to have more focus, more attention, and more money put toward mental health resources,” Uzzell told WRAL.
If you or anyone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts or undergoing a mental health crisis, you are urged to call the 24/7 National Suicide Prevention hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or go to SuicidePreventionLifeline.org