Photo: Alex Pedersen

Arlo Lott Jr., a 41-year-old in his second year of graduate studies in the Master’s of Environmental Management (MEM) program, died after falling approximately 70 feet during a rock climbing trip in Utah on Saturday, April 16.

Lott lived in Steamboat Springs and was completing his master’s degree via the program’s distance option.

He was extricated from Farnsworth Canyon in Emory County, Utah by helicopter after a rescue effort by Emery County Search and Rescue, the sheriff’s office and Goblin Valley State Park staff.

The helicopter’s medical crew attempted to save his life for nearly an hour, but Lott was pronounced dead shortly after being lifted from the canyon.

From Interim President Nancy Chisholm’s April 21 email:

“Arlo was a distance student and came to Western to earn his master’s degree a little later in life. He was 41 years-old and sadly leaves behind a young family. From what I have learned since hearing this tragic news, Arlo touched many lives in the MEM program.” 


Should you need assistance, there are resources available:

The Western community is encouraged to reach out to the 24/7 Crisis Services at 970.252.6220, text TALK to 38255, or call the Western Counseling Center at 970.252.3200 to schedule an appointment. 

TimelyCare also is available to you with counselors ready to talk 24/7. Please take advantage of this free service at

Instructions to access TimelyCare MD: 

  1. Create your free account by visiting or download the TimelyCare app at the App Store or on Google Play.  
  2. Click “Sign in.”
  3. Create your profile using your @western school email address.
  4. Follow the prompts to start your first visit.
  5. Here is a Youtube tutorial video on it:
  6. Please see attachment for more information