Many of you have heard about the sudden passing of an undergraduate student in our university housing community earlier this week. We are deeply saddened by this news and have been working closely with our colleagues to provide support to those most immediately affected. Our hearts go out to the student's family and to everyone who is processing and grieving this loss of a valued member of our campus community.
From our ongoing conversations with students, staff, and faculty who live in the area, we know that this incident has deeply affected many. We want to address some rumors that were brought to our attention and to reassure you that officials have determined no foul play was involved and there is no threat to the safety of the community. We are not sharing further details simply as a matter of respect for the privacy of the student's family. And we write to you today to acknowledge this sad event and provide information about mental health, academic, and community resources available to you. (This message builds upon information and support provided to San Joaquin Village residents by the Residential & Community Living Team.)
Mental Health Support
We all react to news like this differently. You might feel sad, afraid, or even numb. All of those are natural emotional responses. We also differ in how we experience and express our emotions. You might be inclined to talk with friends, seek the support of a counselor or other trusted advisor, or deliberately distance yourself from news and conversation about the incident.
One of the important values of our UC Santa Barbara community is that you do not have to face any challenge or hardship alone. If you are worried about yourself, a friend, or a neighbor, please submit a Support Outreach Form to Student Mental Health Coordination Services so that we can reach out to offer support and personally connect you or another student with campus resources.
Counselors are available remotely if you want to talk with someone, even just to check in about how you are feeling. CAPS (Counseling and Psychological Services) can be reached any time, day or night, at 805-893-4411 (outside business hours, press 2 to be connected to a counselor). You will also find resources on the CAPS website. As always, CAPS services are confidential and free of charge.
Among our greatest strengths as a campus community are our compassion and support for one another. It’s more important than ever that we take care of ourselves and that we reach out to one another.
We understand that this is an academically demanding time of the quarter. If you are concerned about your ability to complete assignments and exams in a timely manner due to this incident, please communicate your concerns as early as possible to your instructors and/or a college academic advisor. College academic advisors can be reached at:
Ongoing Local Support for the Residential Community
Campus counselors will continue to be available for drop-in appointments in Espacio 6 in Santa Catalina near the pool and Portola Dining Commons this Thursday and Friday, March 11-12, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. If you prefer a phone or Zoom call instead, call the main CAPS number (805-893-4411) and press 1 to leave a message. A counselor will call you back. These sessions are confidential, free, and do not require any intake forms.
Additionally, your RA and your Lead Staff in Residential & Community Living are available to support you – please don’t hesitate to reach out.
We wish to express our gratitude to all of the first responders, staff, students, and faculty who have shown great compassion throughout the course of this week.
Yours in community,
Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs
Associate Vice Chancellor for Housing, Dining & Auxiliary Enterprises
Assistant Vice Chancellor & Dean of Student Life