A STUDENT found dead at a Southampton halls of residence committed suicide, an inquest heard.

Alexander Ukwu, originally from Nigeria, was studying MEng Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Southampton.

The 19-year-old’s body was found on April 23 at Hartley Grove halls by after maintenance workers entered his room to change the shower head.

Flatmate Jamie Brooks was also at the scene and called 999. He said that Mr Ukwu “kept himself to himself” and he hadn’t seen him for around two weeks.

“I was in the kitchen. One of them [workers] came in and said ‘can you come and check on your mate?’ and I went in to his room and saw him lying on the floor,” he said.

Helium cannisters were found in the room with a delivery note addressed to the student and a handwritten note partly in another language. A section of it said: “Love you so so so much, see you soon (six days).”

Elekwachi Ukwu told the Winchester inquest that he had not heard from his nephew so attempted to find him at the university campus.

“Alexander was a very private young man,” he said.

“I had not spoken to him for a while and called him a number of times and sent him messages on WhatsApp and texts. he responded initially and then stopped and I got quite concerned.”

Due to data protection issues The university could not give out Mr Ukwu’s room number, but did a welfare check in early April where he was found alive and well.

It is believed he stayed at the halls of residence over the Easter holidays, as his parents live in Nigeria.

Dr Vipul Foria, consultant histopathologist at Southampton General Hospital, said Mr Ukwu’s body had started decomposing, so it is likely he died a number of days before being found.

He said death was caused by asphyxiation - a lack of oxygen.

Senior coroner for central Hampshire Grahame Short ruled a verdict of suicide. He said: “It’s not possible for me to say why he took this action. He may have been struggling with the course and been reluctant to share his problems with others.

“I think his isolation in a foreign country may have been another factor.”

After the inquest a University of Southampton spokesperson said: “Alexander was a valued member of our student community and our thoughts and sympathies continue to be with his family and friends.”

Mr Ukwu’s death came just months after another student jumped to his death from the roof of his halls in the city centre.

Following the two tragedies there were calls for more to be done to support young people studying at the university.