The Monroe County medical examiner said Sunday Alexandra Kogut, 18, of New Hartford died of blunt force trauma, the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle reported.
Clayton Whittemore, a Utica College student who also is from New Hartford, was arrested at a rest stop near Syracuse several hours after Kogut's body was found, the newspaper said.
The family of the slain communications major said in a statement Sunday night that Kogut had been "thrilled to be beginning her college education."
"Her lovely and sweet demeanor was truly infectious and she will forever be missed," the statement said. "Her family is very grateful for the tremendous outpouring of love and support that they have received from so many friends and neighbors."
College President John Halstead, in a statement, offered condolences to Kogut's family and friends on behalf of the campus community.
"Our thoughts and prayers go out to her loved ones at this difficult time," he said. "These are trying times for our campus but I know we will pull together and support each other."