University student death response plans using a structural management approach provide effective coordinated institutional action
Student death is an inevitable event in the long life of university communities. Although student death is uncommon, universities need to be able respond in a timely and appropriate way to bring the relationship with a deceased student to a dignified close. This article presents a review of factors previously identified in higher education and death studies literature to be useful inclusions in any university=college death response plan. It proposes that management frameworks underpin effective institutional responses to student death as they provide the organizational context for coherent multi-disciplinary action within complex policy, campus and departmental arrangements. The article reports on the development of a university death response plan that took a ‘‘structural’’ approach derived from the discipline of management, to the mobilizing, coordination and monitoring of resources relevant to student death in a multi-campus multidisciplinary environment.