Purdue students: "We are crying out for help but our plea is falling on deaf ears."

More than a dozen Purdue students are accusing university officials of ignoring their cries for help and guidance during a difficult school year.

Posted: Nov 20, 2020 11:25 AM
Updated: Nov 20, 2020 6:47 PM

PURDUE UNIVERSITY, Ind. (WLFI)—During an unprecedented year for students regardless of educational stage emotions are high. More than a dozen Purdue students are expressing their dismay, accusing university officials of ignoring their cries for help and guidance during a difficult school year.

On Friday morning during one of many sit-ins on Purdue University's campus at Hovde Hall students told News 18 that Purdue administration is not properly fighting nor advocating for students. 

Where did this all start? Organizers of the student gathering, Purdue Junior Noah Smith and  Sophomore Brian Lee, said there are a myriad number of concerns however a particular incident took students over the edge. 

Lee said on Monday evening students found out another Purdue student took their life the past weekend. Lee said because of a really stressful year many students decided to look further into the issue by looking at data the university provided.

This data is most commonly provided through the Purdue University Police Department's website through APRA (Indiana Access to Public Records Act) and Clery Logs (Formerly the Student Right to Know and Campus Security Act of 1990).

Lee said to his and other students' knowledge the data provided on the PUPD indicated that there have been 3 suicides from the start of July 2020 through October 2020 and one most recently in the month of November. After students blasted the university on social media it gained traction from university officials. 

A Purdue spokesperson released this statement: 

"The monthly stat sheet referenced in many social media posts was produced by PUPD voluntarily and in addition to state and federally mandated APRA and Clery logs. It listed information received in the call to dispatch, not the actual outcome of the call.

To avoid confusion, moving forward, only the APRA and Clery logs, which list the outcome of the call, will be kept. They are publicly available for viewing."

Despite Purdue's statements students said it highlights a bigger issue that the university isn't being transparent, working to provide guidance and help to those struggling with mental illness during a difficult school year and only caring about the university's image during the pandemic. 

However, the university has also responded to those claims in the statement below: 

"There are few areas of campus in which we have increased the budget and staffing more than Counseling and Psychological Services. Since 2013, we have doubled both, and every year, vastly more individual clinical appointments, group counseling sessions, and programs have been offered.

The Office of the Dean of Students also has help and services available and offers assistance or simply someone to talk to. We urge all those who may be in need, or those who know someone who needs help, to reach out."

Students said student leaders have had meetings with Purdue officials but says those meetings have carried no substance for change.

Students list of demands, #OccupyHovde Demands:

We demand academic support for the student body.
Including but not limited to: enabling pass/no pass with the same standards as the spring and allowing students to choose an all-online option for spring 2021.

We demand higher accountability for the professors.
Including but not limited to: grading in a timely manner; providing leniency for deadlines; respecting reading days by giving no assignments, labs, or quizzes; and being cognizant of the world’s current condition, adjusting student workloads accordingly.

We demand improvements to the way in which mental health is handled.
Including but not limited to ensuring everyone receives help even if CAPS says they’re “too severe” or “not severe enough”, making CAPS more accessible to everyone, and preventing PUPD from dealing with mental health crises especially in uniform.

We demand accountability for Purdue’s reporting systems and statistics.
Including by not limited to: taking all incident reports with the utmost seriousness, investigating them properly, and handing out the correct punitive measures.

We demand increased transparency from Purdue University.
Including but not limited to: accurately reporting and publicly acknowledging current, future, and previously neglected incidents involving the Purdue community members, regardless if it happened on-campus.

West Lafayette
Clear
85° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 83°
Kokomo
Clear
80° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 55°
Feels Like: 80°
Rensselaer
Clear
77° wxIcon
Hi: 78° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 78°
Fowler
Clear
85° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 83°
Williamsport
Clear
81° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 80°
Crawfordsville
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 79°
Frankfort
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 79°
Delphi
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 79°
Monticello
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 56°
Feels Like: 79°
Logansport
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 79°
Once more pleasant day before we see changes with an increase in heat and humidity, and thunderstorm chances.
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 749835

Reported Deaths: 13752
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1031281779
Lake555181006
Allen41642691
St. Joseph36959564
Hamilton36537416
Elkhart29373459
Tippecanoe22871224
Vanderburgh22544400
Porter19339325
Johnson18412388
Hendricks17594317
Clark13202193
Madison13128344
Vigo12606253
LaPorte12400221
Monroe12175175
Delaware10949198
Howard10270225
Kosciusko9615119
Hancock8556145
Bartholomew8162157
Warrick7854156
Floyd7775180
Grant7230179
Wayne7158201
Boone6922103
Morgan6742141
Dubois6211118
Marshall6208116
Cass5997109
Henry5894108
Dearborn589078
Noble580287
Jackson508774
Shelby500897
Lawrence4735121
Gibson444293
Harrison441073
Clinton440455
DeKalb438985
Montgomery434890
Whitley406042
Huntington402281
Steuben399359
Miami392968
Jasper387054
Knox375790
Putnam372160
Wabash360683
Ripley346570
Adams344955
Jefferson335685
White330853
Daviess3031100
Wells295181
Decatur289992
Greene286685
Fayette284864
Posey273735
LaGrange273072
Scott269955
Clay266048
Washington245034
Randolph244683
Jennings235249
Spencer234231
Starke227858
Fountain219147
Sullivan214043
Owen211258
Fulton202142
Jay200932
Carroll193420
Orange188155
Perry187037
Rush175726
Vermillion174044
Franklin170235
Tipton166046
Parke149016
Pike138134
Blackford136132
Pulaski120347
Newton113036
Brown104043
Crawford102316
Benton101114
Martin91615
Warren83615
Switzerland8108
Union72810
Ohio57811
Unassigned0420

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events