Dear WVU Faculty and Instructors:
As was shared in the recent Community Notice, University officials have been made aware of a letter that described content related to a suicide taking place on campus. Regional and federal public safety officials are involved, as well as mental health experts. The University is taking several additional security measures to ensure the safety of our campus.
While the decision was made to keep campus open tomorrow, please know that each of you has the option to move your instruction online if you have concerns about your personal safety. Should you choose to switch to online, please communicate your plans with your students and department chair or dean as soon as possible. Should you choose to hold class in person, we also ask that you be lenient with students who may also not feel safe coming to campus.
In light of recent events coupled with the stress of the ongoing pandemic, please continue to be mindful of both your students’ and your own mental health and wellbeing. This is always a stressful time of year, and we have asked a lot of you since the onset of the pandemic. But perhaps now more than ever is an opportunity to show grace and take extra steps to show your compassion and to engage in self-care.
The Community Notice lists a number of tips and resources for WVU community members. A few tips to keep in mind include:
- Be alert. Pay attention to your surroundings.
- Unplug from earbuds and earphones when walking outdoors and in public areas. Keep your head up and be aware.
- If you see something suspicious, say something. Call 911 or message the University through the LiveSafe app.
- If you are concerned about your personal safety or the safety of others, call 911.
- If you are not signed up for WVU Alert, you can do so to receive urgent messages from the University.
- Follow the WVU Safety and Wellness Facebook page and @WVUsafety on Twitter.
- You also can get updates from the University at the Emergency website during emergency situations ( https://emergency.wvu.edu/).
Also, mentalhealth.wvu.edu shares various resources and information if you or someone you know is struggling with mental health issues. In addition to the Carruth Center, students can access free, confidential assistance through the Crisis Text Line by calling 304-293-4431 and selecting option 1 or by texting “WVU” to 741741. There is an online therapy service called Talkspace that provides a secure, free platform for counseling. If you need assistance, please talk with someone.
University officials will continue to monitor the situation and will provide updates as necessary. In the meantime, please reach out to your academic leaders should you need further guidance.