Harvard Student Killed in Car Accident in New Jersey

She was returning from a Mock Trial competition with her classmates.

Photo by Olga Khvan

Photo by Olga Khvan

A Harvard University student was killed, and several others injured, after a van they were traveling in that was returning from a competition in Virginia was involved in an accident in New Jersey early Monday morning.

In an email sent to the student body, interim dean of the undergraduate college, Donald Pfister, said Angela Mathew, a high school seminar director and member of the Harvard Mock Trial Association, died as a result of the crash.

“Our hearts are broken. This is a very sudden and unexpected loss. The news comes as a shock not only to Angela’s friends in Leverett House, but to all of us throughout the college. All of us—those who knew Angela and those of us who did not—are grieving today,” Pfister said in the email.

Mathew was one of six students who were traveling in the van that was involved in the accident. Another student suffered serious injuries, while two others sustained minor injuries as a result of the crash. All of them were sent to Capital Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton, New Jersey, for evaluation.

Pfister asked the student body and faculty to keep the other students in their thoughts as they recovered. “This is a tragedy and I join you all in the feeling of loss Angela’s death brings,” he wrote.

According to NewJersey.com, the crash occurred around 12:30 a.m., after the Chrysler Town and Country minivan that the students were traveling in crossed the northbound lane, struck a guardrail, and swerved back into the center lane. The van was then struck by a tractor-trailer. The report said Mathew, 20, was ejected from the vehicle.

In an online profile, Mathew, president of the Harvard College Science Club for Girls, said she was concentrating in neurobiology, and wanted to encourage young girls to break into the science sector by dismissing the stereotype that women can’t excel in STEM research. “Encouraging young girls at an early age to love science, be curious, and take chances is the first step to making this stereotype obsolete,” she wrote in her profile. Mathew was a member of the class of 2015.