A FIRST-year university student has died after falling off a balcony at a Halloween party.
Joia Simpson, 19, plummeted 10 stories from a student apartment building in what was described as a tragic accident.
The teenager was at the top floor apartment for a party on Wednesday night when she fell over two side-by-side railing, emergency services said.
She was pronounced dead at the scene.
Joia — a student at the University of St Thomas in Minneapolis, Minnesota, was interested in studying business, the university said.
In a statement, the private Catholic university said: “Her family most wants people to remember her beautiful smile.”
St Thomas also said counselling and psychological services would be available for all students and staff.
The exact circumstances behind Joia’s death are still being investigated.
Minneapolis Fire Department Assistant Chief Bryan Tyner said authorities were called to the Bridges Apartments building close to the university campus just before 1am.
“Her family most wants people to remember her beautiful smile”
University of St Thomas statement
Police say they spoke to at least seven young people between the ages of 18 and 20 after the fall.
Originally from Bayside, California, Joia was only two months into her degree.
Lawrence Blake, the university’s chaplain, told US media: “As a community, we’re always deeply saddened with an event like this.”
He went on: “We think about a life cut short. It’s very, very tragic.”
Blake added: “This is a very difficult time for the students. They’re devastated.”
The death is not being treated as suspicious by police.
It comes just two weeks after another young student was found dead in her dorm room at the same university.
Katherine Mullen, 19, was found unresponsive in her room on October 19, in circumstances which police say aren’t suspicious.