Rowan University students demand more mental health services after recent suicides

Suicides on college campuses is a major public health concern that’s impacting our local communities. Rowan University students say more needs to be done to address the mental health crisis after recent suicides.

"I’m angry, frustrated, upset that this stuff has been going on," Gregory Nekrasovas told FOX 29.

Gregory Nekrasovas is one of many Rowan University students feeling a range of difficult emotions.  Last week, Nekrasovas says his friend and campus fraternity brother died by suicide. On Thursday, another Rowan University student fell from a campus parking garage. The student remains in critical condition.

"We as a university need to come together a bit more to support each other and best efforts to make sure Rowan is a safe and happy place to be," he said.

In light of the recent tragedies, the school and parking garage owner are working together erecting fencing along the tops of campus garages.

"That parking garage shouldn’t be a place where students decide to end their lives just because they can’t get help," senior Arianne Valderrama said.


Valderrama feels that the university needs to dedicate more resources to mental health. The university says three students have died by suicide this semester. 

"One of my friends was going through a lot and he was put on the waiting list. He had to search for help on his own elsewhere," she said.

Rowan University spokesperson Joe Cardona says the school nixed the waiting lists for counselors this semester. Instead, a mental health professional assesses every student looking for help and then recommends a tailored treatment plan depending on the degree of crisis.  

"If there’s a student in high crisis, they’re going to get the help they need. No one gets turned away," Cardona said.

Students plan to address their concerns at a meeting in the Chamberlain Student Center Eynon Ballroom beginning at 7 p.m. Monday. 


If you or a loved one is feeling distressed, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. The crisis center provides free and confidential emotional support 24 hours a day, seven days a week to civilians and veterans. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. Or text 741-741.


For the latest local news, sports and weather, download the FOX 29 News app.