Skip to main content

Death of a Student


This policy guides university administrators when responding to the death of an enrolled Brigham Young University–Hawaii ("BYU–Hawaii" or "university") student in a timely, sensitive, and appropriate manner, providing support for an orderly, effective, and caring response. University administrators should be guided by empathy, sensitivity, and support for the bereaved and, in some instances, the need to preserve important evidence.


Notification of an enrolled student’s death, either on or off campus, should be conveyed as soon as possible by university faculty, staff, or students to BYU–Hawaii Campus Safety & Security (808-675-3911). The members of the President’s Council and the Dean of Students should also be notified immediately. In the event the death occurred on university property, Campus Safety & Security will contact, as appropriate, the Honolulu Police Department and emergency medical providers to attend to the body.

At the direction of the President and the Student Life Vice President, the Dean of Students will coordinate the following:

  • Verify death,
  • Identify emergency contact and either provide notification of death after the death has been verified or ensure notification has been provided by law enforcement or other appropriate institution (e.g., The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ),
  • Contact next of kin to provide support, and
  • Coordinate any further notification and communications with University Communications.

The Registrar will update the student record, withdraw the student from classes, and all current term’s tuition, fees, meal plan fees, and residential housing deposits will be refunded to the estate based on university procedure.


3.1 Applicability

This policy applies to currently enrolled, degree-seeking students.

3.2 Coordination of Communications

University Communications will be responsible for collecting and disseminating information about a student death to the external media. University Communications will work with Campus Safety & Security, the Dean of Students, and the Office of the General Counsel to maintain the accuracy and ensure the legality of the information disseminated. Except as requested by law enforcement, other university personnel should not speculate as to the cause of death or make unauthorized statements assigning responsibility for the cause of death. Responses to requests for information regarding the student by the external media or others should be referred to University Communications.

3.3 Foreign Travel

If a student death occurs during university-sponsored foreign travel, the university staff member accompanying the trip should immediately contact local emergency services and the local law enforcement agency, and the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. Once the situation is secured, the university staff member should contact BYU–Hawaii Campus Safety & Security.

3.4 Privacy

Upon the death of a student, notifications must be made to a number of campus units to enable necessary administrative actions to be undertaken in a timely manner. Faculty and staff shall use discretion in the use, access to, and disclosure of information related to the student and the student’s death. Any information provided should be approved by University Communications to ensure accuracy. Use, access to, and disclosure of personal information shall be in accordance with relevant laws and regulations.


Death of a BYU-Hawaii Employee


Policy Owner: Dean of Students

Executive Sponsor: Student Life Vice President

Approved by President’s Council: 12/09/2019

Modified: 02/07/2022

Full revision history maintained by the Office of compliance & Ethics.