Visiting professor has piece published about death issues

Steven Miller, visiting professor of philosophy, has an opinion piece published in Times Higher Education. In Miller’s piece, he relates that when he talks about death in his classes, for many their own deaths seem “part of the way-off and thus not-real future.”

But then a student on campus killed himself. “Few occurrences rock a small campus quite like suicide. This place prides itself on ‘community’ as something more than a recruitment slogan. … But we didn’t know that one of us was struggling — deeply. We held a candlelit vigil, sang ‘Amazing Grace’ and silently pledged to be more attentive and responsive. …

He says he learned that the student was like others on campus: “many of them also struggle with thoughts of meaninglessness, hopelessness and, in more than a handful of cases, suicide.”

He writes of the extreme pressure students on the Ripon campus and other campuses feel, and over winter break around 15 percent of the first-year students dropped out.

“The reasons students gave for leaving varied, but a significant number referenced emotional turmoil,” Miller writes. “From those who stayed, I continue to hear the same themes: disappointment, loneliness and uncertainty. … These students don’t need to be reminded of their impending deaths: for many, they’re feeling dead already. Maybe that’s what we’ve got in common.”

Miller graduated from Ripon College in 2007.


Related Posts

Erin Bryan

Research by Erin K. Bryan selected for national poster presentation

Research by Erin K. Bryan, assistant professor of music and voice area coordinator, has been selected for a poster paper presentation at the 2022 National […]

Coach Bob Gillespie

Bob Gillespie to be inducted into Lewis University’s Academy of Coaches

Ripon Hall of Fame Coach Bob Gillespie will be inducted into Lewis University’s Academy of Coaches. He will be honored with three others during halftime […]

Seale Doss

Seale Doss publishes two new novels with familiar character

Professor Emeritus of Philosophy Seale Doss has two recent novels that are available on amazon.com. The character of Phillip Dee from Doss’ 2018 novel Blood […]

Andrew prellwitz

Andrew Prellwitz leading library-associated groups

Andrew Prellwitz, associate librarian-user services and director of Lane Library, is serving as the president of the Ripon Public Library Board. The board is launching […]

Steven Miller