Tragic news for the entire Columbia community today: Rachel Swett, a rising senior in CC, died after a skiing accident in New Zealand, where she was studying abroad this semester.
Dean Shollenberger has just sent out the official notification of Rachel’s death. In his email, he noted Rachel’s commitment to her sorority, Alpha Chi Omega, her passion for photography and travel, and her prowess at French and psychology.
The University encourages you, even if you are far from campus, to use Columbia resources for support. Contact the Center for Student Advising at 212-854-6378, Counseling and Psychological Services at 212-854-2878, the Office of the University Chaplain at 212-854-1493, or Residential Programs at at 212-854-6805.
Bwog was made aware of Rachel’s passing yesterday, and did not post at the request of University officials hoping to reach all of Rachel’s friends and family.
We send our deepest condolences to Rachel’s family and friends. We encourage everyone to share memories of Rachel in the comments so we can remember her together.
Shollenberger’s email after the jump.
It is with deep regret that I write to inform you of the recent death of one of our students.
Rachel Swett, a rising senior in Columbia College, passed away yesterday as a result of injuries sustained in a skiing accident in New Zealand, where she had been studying abroad. We wish to express our deepest condolences to Rachel’s family, sorority sisters, and friends, and ask that you keep them in your thoughts in the days and weeks ahead.
With the passing of Rachel, we have lost a friend, a remarkable scholar, and a member of the Columbia community who demonstrated special promise. On campus, she was an active member of the Alpha Chi Omega sorority. Rachel studied psychology and French, and her passion for the latter led her to study at Reid Hall in Paris last fall. She loved photography and travel, and had most recently participated in a program through the Institute for Study Abroad at Butler University in New Zealand. I hope as you mourn the loss of Rachel, you will remember her for the way in which she pursued her passions and inspired those around her to do the same.
Whenever there is a death such as this, we are all struck by a wide range of emotions and a deep sense of loss. Especially during this difficult time, please rely on one another, your family, and University offices for support. Even if you are not on or near campus, Columbia resources remain available to you. I encourage you to seek guidance from professional staff by calling the Center for Student Advising (212-854-6378), Counseling and Psychological Services (212-854-2878), or the Office of the University Chaplain (212-854-1493). Residential Programs staff is available to provide support in the residence halls and may be reached by calling 212-854-6805.
In this time of great sadness, I know we are united in grieving the loss of such a spirited member of our community.