English Department Pays Tribute to York Student Who Took Her Own Life

PhD student Emily Miller has been described as “an imaginative, kind young woman”.

(Image: Iwan Stone)

An English PhD student at the University of York who took her life in October last year has been remembered as “an extraordinary young woman.” 

Emily Miller, 23, was found by an inquest earlier this month to have died by drowning in York, as reported by YorkMix. 

Professor Helen Smith, Head of the Department of English and Related Literature, said: “Emily was an extraordinary young woman: talented, passionate, and brilliant. She had a gift for bringing people together, and her love of literature was infectious. 

“Emily went from strength to strength academically, never missing a deadline, even an optional one.

“Emily was passionate about justice, equality and freedom of speech, and about writers who gave a voice to the voiceless. 

“An imaginative, kind young woman, Emily was academically gifted. She had a talent for understanding other people, whether in her classes and social interactions or in her detailed, insightful, compelling readings of literary texts.

“We are lucky and proud that Emily chose to study at York, and that we had the chance to share in her talent and extraordinary spirit. Our deepest condolences to all who knew and loved Emily.”

The inquest heard that Emily had been struggling with mental health issues for some time, and had been sectioned several times between March 2019 and her death. 

Any student experiencing psychological or mental health difficulties does not have to struggle alone. Support is available through the University at https://www.york.ac.uk/students/health/help/.

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