I have read coverage in The Tech of Elizabeth Shin’s suicide and her family’s lawsuit. I work at a small private university in Seattle, Washington. Besides my general interest in academia, I am the parent of a daughter who completed her bachelor’s degree at Columbia in 1994.
I am very sorry for the Shin family’s loss, and for the terrible impact the suicide must have had on Ms. Shin’s floor-mates and other acquaintances.
I agree with the editorial position that the Shin family would do well to share any settlement with MIT. Even more strongly, I feel that their case is weak. Surely they knew that their daughter was a very troubled person. There is a moral limit to the amount of responsibility anyone can assign to “others” when a family member is in trouble, and I hope the court finds that there is also a legal limit.