Students are staff at Hull University have been left “devastated” by the death of Libby Squire, according to the vice chancellor and the president of the students’ union.
They said extra measures have been put in place to support students trying to cope with the news and more safety measures have been put in place, including organising students who want to walk in groups or with security staff, if requested.
Union president Osaro Otobo said: “The student community are absolutely devastated by this news but now we want to pull together and support each other to make sure we’re all during this time.”
Ms Otobo was speaking with vice-chancellor Susan Lea in front of floral tributes which have been laid in memory of Ms Squire around a tree on the campus.
She said: “The student body would like to pay their respects to Libby and her family. So, as a students’ union, we have a Remembrance Tree on our ground floor where students can write a note for Libby and her family which will be passed on to them.
“They just want to show their respects. You can see from the tree, all of the flowers and the tributes.
“That’s what want to do just show how much we care.”
Asked whether students were worried about their own security, Ms Otobo said: “There’ll be some concerns about safety but I want to highlight that this is such a rare occurrence, so now, as a students’ union, we highlight all the measures that you can take to be safe on a night out, including how to prepare your journey, make sure you book a taxi on a night out.”
Professor Lea said: “It has been a difficult time. Students and staff are devastated by the situation and way it has unfolded. But I think we’ve pulled together as a community.
“This a really close-knit community and we’ve been really heartened and moved by the way in which staff and students, the local community and the police have come together at a difficult time both in the search for Libby but, also, to support one another.”
She said safety was an “absolute priority” for staff and students.
“We are absolutely committed to providing all the support we can to our staff and our students,” the professor said.
“We are doing that in a variety of ways and I have an extremely strong team leading that.
“So we have extra assistance available to our students through advisers.
“But we also have schemes available so security will walk with them if they would like somebody to walk with them. And students have got together to form groups so they can walk in pairs.
“So there’s a variety of initiatives to provide that support.”
Prof Lea also said mental health support for students had been “augmented”.