Fordham student critically injured in fall from clock tower

Lamar Ellis
April 16, 2019

A Fordham University student fell to her death after climbing the campus' famed bell tower over the weekend, just two weeks before she was set to graduate.

The 22-year-old journalism student was apparently trying to take a picture as well, according to CBS New York.

Monfries lost her footing and fell about 30 or 40 feet, officials said.

University bosses are now investigating to find out how the group gained access to the tower.

"Fordham will confer a bachelor's degree upon Sydney posthumously, which we will present to her parents at the appropriate time".

In their statement, Fordham University also confirmed that they would be giving Monfries a posthumous degree that will be given to her parents.

Emergency Medical Services rushed the student to the local hospital, where she was placed on life support.

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A student, named only as Dave, who met Sydney and her friends hours before the tragedy, said: "My roommate was with them". "I think a large part of the reason people want to do this so badly is that the school doesn't allow it", said Patrick Burke, Fordham College at Rose Hill '14. Other clips on her Snapchat reportedly showed Monfries' friends stumbling through the darkness using their phones as flashlights to see before sitting on the tower's perch.

Lili Huang, a 21-year-old senior studying communications, told the outlet that climbing the tower has become somewhat of a rite of passage for Fordham students.

Keating Hall and the tower are normally locked at night, according to The New York Times.

According to the university's website, Fordham University is a Jesuit, Catholic institution focused on instilling students with "wisdom, experience, morality, critical thinking and creative problem-solving".

"It's like a senior thing to go on the most popular building on campus", said Priscilla Morales, a psychology student, told the Times.

Other students described climbing the bell tower as a unsafe rite of passage. However, a senior, Anne, who declined to give her last name, said that "the doors aren't always locked".

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