Why do people keep dying at the University of Warwick?
Midlands University is officially one of Britain’s deadliest campuses
Going to University can be stressful enough without the ever-present threat of death hanging over your head, but recently it has emerged that almost ninety Warwick students have met their end on university property since 2004.
If you are wondering why all these grisly deaths have passed you by during your time at Warwick, try not to fret.
The good people at Senate House have become experts at quelling any gossip surrounding the latest death.
Your ignorance regarding this high propensity of on-campus fatalities is less to do with your out-of-touch-ness and more to do with Nigel Thrift’s understandable desire not to have regular Tab headlines about another fatality in Cryfield.
It’s uncomfortable knowing that this information could be hidden from students at Warwick, but it’s also hard to argue with the University’s position that it’s ultimately for their own good.
A steady catalogue of deaths at Warwick appearing on everybody’s newsfeed isn’t conducive towards a calm working environment, and when Tab editors requested these figures from Senate House, they very quickly complied.
This isn’t some shady cover-up the Uni is conducting here – they would just rather that as few people knew about Warwick’s weirdly high mortality rate as possible.
As for the causes of death on campus,? Well, according to the World Health Organisation, one of the most customary modes of departure among young people is suicide, and suicide rates at Warwick may have received a boost in recent history from the economic recession.
Guardian journalist Nancy Groves reports that times of austerity can enforce a barren outlook among students that will dramatically affect the temperament of those who have invested so heavily in their future careers.
A tragic side effect of this, she reports, will be a spike in occurrences of students taking their own lives at University.
This report is compounded by a recent announcement from the Samaritans identifying money as the hottest new source of anxiety among young people in the UK, claiming that this fear affects as many as 1 in 2.
The year 2008-2009, just after the crash, has been recorded as Warwick’s grisliest yet; with thirteen on-campus deaths taking place in that time. That’s almost two students a month.
Counsellors at Senate House believe that Warwick’s proximity to the top end of University league tables may also have contributed to this number.
Warwick and universities like it are a magnet for high-maintenance students, prone to perfectionism, whose lives are narratives of achievement, upward mobility and success.
Deviation from these norms can mean an absolute derailment for many students and sometimes lead to suicide.
The good news is that if this number of deaths is more to do with suicide and not just that fucking dangerous road on the way to Tesco, then the University is in a good position to do something about it.
In top-level Universities have been taking an increasing number of pre-emptive measures to keep their death toll as low as possible.
Cambridge, for example, claimed to have been anticipating roughly 60 suicide attempts from its student population this year but with successful attempts accounting for as little as 2 per cent of that.
For now, the cause of these 88 deaths remains a mystery. Albeit a mystery about which Warwick Students seem quite justifiably unsettled.
When asked what she made of these figures, PPE second year Bethany Meban simply responded; “Fuck that.”
Fuck that indeed, Beth. Fuck that indeed.