Tue, 07 Dec 2021

CHAPEL HILL, North Carolina: Following a second student suicide during the fall semester, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill canceled classes for two days and declared 12th October a "Wellness Day."

"We are in the middle of a mental health crisis, both on our campus and across our nation, and we are aware that college-aged students carry an increased risk of suicide," said Chancellor Kevin M. Guskiewicz.

"Reach out to a friend, a classmate or colleague and ask them, 'Honestly, how are you doing?'," he added, noting that the university will create a special support network for students and staff this week, and a mental health summit will be held later this month.

A suicide was reported at the university's Forest Theater on 4th September.

Campus police also responded to a suicide on 9th October at the Hinton James Residence Hall, while a call was made on Sunday about an attempted suicide at the Granville Towers South on campus, according to police.

University Media Relations told ABC News that the incidents are under investigation, and student government leaders asked the school to postpone classes on Monday and Tuesday.

In a statement, student representatives said, "We share the pain of our peers, who are now navigating both the grief of losing a friend and simultaneously completing a rigorous curriculum during an already stressful semester."

According to data from the National Institute of Mental Health, suicide is the second-leading cause of death among people between ages 15 and 34.

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