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Art school suicide • Brooklyn Paper

Art school suicide

Too soon: Pratt Institute student Mareena Jacob aparently took her own life on Oct. 15 when she jumped from the ninth-floor balcony of her dorm on the Clinton Hill campus.
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A Pratt Institute student jumped to her death from a dorm balcony last Wednesday, according to police.

A friend of Mareena Jacob told the authorities she saw the 20-year-old student leap from the ninth-floor balcony of her room at 6 pm. Officers arrived at the Clinton Hill campus, on Willoughby Street between Hall Street and Classon Avenue, shortly afterward, police said. Emergency personnel rushed her to Brooklyn Hospital Center where she was pronounced dead, the authorities reported.

Jacob grew up in a suburb in the San Francisco Bay Area and was a senior majoring in graphic design, a childhood friend said.

“She’s been a fierce and loyal friend, talented, brilliant designer, a hero among friends, someone who cared more about others than herself,” said Julia Park.

Park said she had known Jacob since middle school and last saw her in California in August before the school year started. Park “thought [Jacob] was fine,” she said. The two had planned to go out for a drink when Jacob turned 21 in November, Park said.

“I still can’t believe she’s gone,” she said.

Police are investigating the death as a suicide, officials said.

Other friends of Jacob’s mourned her on Facebook.

“There aren’t a lot of people that genuinely care about others like you did. Not many people can turn someone’s day around just by being themselves,” wrote Jessica Nicole Norris in a post accompanying a photo of her with Jacob. “You were sweet, special, and truly unforgettable.”

Another friend, Iris Miao, also posted a photo of her with Jacob, accompanied by this caption:

“I want to go back to this moment and I want to stop time to tell you everything.”

The art school sent its condolences.

“The Pratt community’s thoughts are with Mareena Jacob’s family and friends during this difficult time,” a spokeswoman said.

If someone you know exhibits warning signs of suicide, do not leave the person alone; remove any firearms, alcohol, drugs, or sharp objects that could be used in a suicide attempt; call the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at (800) 273–8255; and take the person to an emergency room or seek help from a medical or mental health professional.

Reach reporter Matthew Perlman at (718) 260–8310. E-mail him at mperl‌man@c‌ngloc‌al.com. Follow him on Twitter @matthewjperlman.
Mourning: Tragedy struck the Pratt Institute campus on Oct. 15 when a 20-year-old killed herself.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

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