By Jim Smith

BOSTON (CBS) – Students and faculty at Emerson College are in shock after the sudden passing of journalism professor Moses Shumow. The 42-year-old husband and father of three children was killed when he was struck by an MBTA commuter train in Beverly while riding his bicycle.

“He was just a gem,” said Journalism Department Chair Janet Kolodzy.

Stunned students say the professor was caring and down to earth

“I found out while I was in class. So you walk out of class. You find out that your advisor is not going to be with you anymore so I don’t know how to deal with that,” explained Emerson student Angel Salcedo.

Professor Shumow got his master’s degree at Emerson, and had just returned there after nearly 10 years at Florida International University. Shumow also produced network documentaries.

Emerson College journalism professor Moses Shumow (Image credit Florida International University)

He will be deeply missed by fellow educators.

“Moses was very cutting edge but he was also very much a down to earth kind of person. He was very positive. One of the things about Moses was if there was a challenge he would stop and say let’s figure out how we can work with it,” said Professor Kolodzy

A student named Hassan said Shumow inspired his class “to be better versions of ourselves.”

“Not a day did he not come to class smiling and welcoming all of us,” Hassan told WBZ-TV’s Kristina Rex. “We felt at home in his class and appreciated.”

Emerson College is making grief counselors available to students. Transit Police say this incident is still under investigation.

Jim Smith