A University of Calgary student has been killed while trying to climb a volcano in Ecuador.

Danielle Kendall, 22, was struck by a chunk of ice the size of a car on Sunday, according to a South American news website. She was with a guided group scaling the Cotopaxi volcano in Ecuador's central highlands.

Kendall was a member of the University of Calgary's track and field team.

“It’s a pretty tough blow for everybody," said Ben Matchett, the university's assistant athletic director.

“She was not only an outstanding track and field competitor for us, and won medals at the national championship and helped the Dinos actually win the national championship last year, she was set to graduate with her degree in chemical engineering just next week and was an outstanding student.”

News of Kendall's death sparked condolences on Twitter, including a tweet from UofCTrack.

"The team needs each other now more than ever as we mourn the loss of one of our own. Thoughts and prayers to her family and friends," the message said.

The university also issued a statement on Monday.

"A dedicated athlete, Danielle was a member of the 2012-2013 Dinos Women’s Track and Field Team where she earned both personal and team medals. The University of Calgary extends its deepest condolences to the Kendall family and her many friends at the Schulich [school of engineering] and on the Dinos."

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