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Go West(and North), Alums!

utside the lower 48 and far from the Boro, two alums hail from Alaska. Four days after completing Rowan’s Master of Science in Teaching program last August, Loren Chassels ’95 began teaching math and science at Barrow High School. Once a resident of Cherry Hill, his new neighbors include Innupiat Eskimos, caribou and polar bears.

For Chassels, the road north to the wilderness started with his interest in teaching his love of the outdoors. Settling on a biology major in college, he indeed to become a forest ranger, so he bolstered his credentials b working as EMT. But the teaching profession still beckoned, so Chassels enrolled at Rowan for graduate study that would lead to the classroom in Alaska.

He says life is “tough up here, but there are some tremendous rewards. The environment is magnificent. I truly believe I am working with some of the best educators in the country and I will never view the sun the same way again.”

Chassels can be reached by e-mail at lchassels@arctic.nsbsd.k12.ak.us or at P.O. Box 960, Barrow, AK 99723-0960.

Susan Littley-Friedman Wiren ’83 lives in Chicken, a gold mining town about 200 miles from the Fairbanks with her husband Greg, and sons. The mail is her only link to life outside town because there is no phone service.

Winter in Chicken means the population drops to 14, down from 27 in the warmer months. In a town so small, the couple has multiple job titles. They are owners and operators of Downtown Chicken, a saloon, café, and souvenir shop—and the only commercial activity in Chicken. Greg is a bush pilot as well and is often called the town’s taxidriver because there are so few roads. Susan home-school their two children, 7-year-old Wolfgang and 4-year-old Maximilian, and Greg also serves as the town’s gold cashier.

In 1995, the Pitman native and her husband received some media attention. They were featured on the Travel Channel’s “Lonely Planets Travel Guide” and were mentioned in a Philadelphia Inquirer article about Alaska.

Letters to Wiren should be sent to Box 48, Airport Rd., Chicken, AK 99732.


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