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Message from the President: Student Death on the Hattiesburg Campus

Fri, 09/29/2023 - 09:15am

This morning, I am deeply saddened to share news of the death of a Southern Miss student following last night’s tragedy at the parking garage. Full details are still emerging as University Police complete their death investigation, but no criminal activity is suspected. 

To the student’s family and friends, I share in your grief. To the entire Southern Miss community, know that I and many, many others care for you.

Today, Student Counseling Services (SCS) is proactively reaching out to friends and others close to the student to offer their assistance. Should you need immediate assistance, walk-ins are welcome at SCS’s office in Bond Hall. SCS can also be reached at 601-266-4829 during regular business hours and at 988 after 5 p.m. and on weekends. In addition, counselors will also be available today from 9:30 a.m. to Noon, and again from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. for individual crisis support in Union Room 227.

Faculty are encouraged to allow for flexibility for students who may have been affected.

Additional resources include:

  • The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, which can be reached by calling 988
  • If you are concerned about a friend, classmate, or anyone who is part of the Southern Miss community, you may anonymously complete a CARES report. If your concern requires immediate assistance, call University Police at 601-266-4986.
  • The University also offers an Employee Assistance Program for faculty and staff. Through the EAP, trained clinicians will listen to concerns and help you or your family members with any issues, including anxiety, depression, and stress.

Again, I am terribly saddened to deliver you this news this morning. The University will continue to do all we can to best support you throughout your time at Southern Miss. 

Joseph S. Paul