BOSTON (CBS) – A Northeastern University freshman from Wakefield has died of bacterial meningitis.

Ryan Shaw, 18, died Sunday. Meningitis is highly contagious, but Northeastern told students that he became sick after leaving campus at the end of the spring semester.

The university and Boston public health officials have reached out to his known close contacts to offer medication and immunization.

Shaw graduated last year from St. John’s Prep in Danvers. Headmaster Edward Hardiman told WBZ NewsRadio 1030 that Shaw was “a very loyal friend with a great sense of humor.”

The freshman had volunteered in Jamaica with disabled children, and Northeastern called his death “an incredible loss.”

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