Cal State Long Beach student Nohemi Gonzalez, 23, brought ''joy, happiness, laughter to everybody she worked with'' says Professor Michael LaForte during a news conference announcing her death in the Paris attacks. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) A student from a university just south of Los Angeles who was studying design in France has been killed in the Paris attacks, a spokesman for the university said on Saturday. Nohemi Gonzalez, 23, was a junior at California State University, Long Beach, and she was studying for a semester at the Strate College of Design in a suburb of Paris, said CSULB spokesman Michael Uhlenkamp. She was from El Monte in Southern California, he said. "She brought joy, happiness, laughter to everybody she worked with. And her students, her classmates -- she functioned as a bit of a mentor to younger students," said Professor Michael LaForte during a news conference. "Nohemi was in Paris participating in a study aboard program. She was at a restaurant with other students, including Long Beach State students, when she was wounded," said university President Jane Close Conoley. On Friday, several sites around Paris were targeted in a coordinated assault by gunmen and bombers in what the Paris public prosecutor said killed 129 people and wounded 352, of whom 99 remain in critical condition. Islamic State on Saturday claimed responsibility for the attacks. Conoley said the school has nearly 80 foreign exchange students from France and is offering counseling support as they cope with the aftermath. The school said it has 17 students, including Gonzalez, who were participating in international exchange programs in Paris, but no others were hurt. It had originally counted 18 abroad, but an accounting of all the students found one did not go overseas as planned, a spokeswoman said. One friend of Gonzalez on Facebook posted messages about the loss. "Rest in paradise my lil Mimi," wrote Miraya Cervantes. "I swear this is a sick joke. Nohemi Gonzalez. I love you sunshine. You always seem to find the bright side of everything."