The has university increased investment in student support services by 250,000 pounds following the death of a first-year student yesterday.

The death marked the fourth student death on campus at UEA in the last 10 months.

The student support service budget has risen across the last three years, from £368,000 in 2016/17 to £450,000 in 2017/18.

The latest investment will increase the budget for 2018/19 budget to £700,000, a 90.22 percent increase from 2016.

Vice-Chancellor Professor David Richardson said: “At UEA we have recognised the significant increase in demand in wellbeing and mental health services and have been planning for additional investment.

“What we can do, what we must do, what we are focused on doing is responding to give the students and staff in our community the support and assistance they need on a whole-institution basis.  As a parent myself, I know how much anxiety and worry this causes for everyone.

“At UEA we take our responsibilities very seriously. We are investing an additional half a million pounds over the next five months because we know demand is growing. We have fast-tracked additional funding into our services both for the remainder of this financial year and the budgets for future years.

“We will be immediately investing an additional £250,000 now for this year and from the start of August we will spend £1.4m in mental health and wellbeing services, a 63% increase in budget compared to this year.

“We will be using this money to improve access to services, recruiting specially trained wellbeing staff to offer more support and interventions to students. This includes a further Cognitive Behavioural Therapist and a Senior Wellbeing Advisor with links to local NHS services.

“The number of advisors who are on hand to offer guidance around a range of worries and challenges will also be boosted. This includes a Mental Health Advisor, Disability Advisor and two Student Life Advisors.

“Training for academic and support staff will also receive additional funding, with three extra staff trainers being recruited to offer Mental Health First Aid training and suicide prevention awareness.

“We are improving our services. We are investing more. But it’s not just about money. We will need a whole community response on these issues and I will be leading a VC Taskforce on mental health and well-being at UEA. We do need to look out for each other and support each other through this.”

On March 13, Alison Donnell named the latest student to die on campus as Theo Brennan Hulme, a literature and creative writing student.

She said Mr Brennan Hulme’s death was “the very worst news”.

In a statement, Professor Donnell added: “Theo was a warm and personable young man and highly regarded by his lecturers, tutors and classmates as a talented writer with a huge amount of promise. He had quickly established himself as a much-loved member of our first year cohort and he will be greatly missed by all of us.

The news came weeks after the police confirmed that a body recovered from the UEA lake on February 19 was 25-year-old Film and Televisions Studies student Nick Sadler. 

Nick Sadler had been missing since Thursday 7 February.

In a statement, uea(su) said they will hold an event on March 15 in the square. Uea(su) said: “From 1pm, students will be able to collect an item from the Hive, add their name to it, and bring it to the square to be with other students and show solidarity.”

You can contact SSS, by calling 01603 592761 or emailing studentsupport@uea.ac.uk. A full list of support services available can be found here.

Alternatively you can contact Samaritans on 116 123 24-hours a day or email jo@samaritans.org