A Minute With...Chris Morton

By Catherine Amoriello ’17

It’s safe to say Lt. Col. Chris Morton, professor of military science, is one of the most well-traveled people on Ship’s campus. 

Having a father serving in the US Army, Morton got an early taste of military life as a self-proclaimed Army brat. He later graduated from the United States Military Academy in 2000. The Oklahoma native’s military career took him to places such as Alabama, Kentucky, Texas, Washington, DC, South Korea, Iraq, and Afghanistan. In 2016, Morton settled down in Pennsylvania as the chair of the Military Science Department at Ship. 

What is your favorite part about working at Ship? 

I think my favorite part of the job is interacting with the students. ...I get the opportunity to sort of give back because you get all these opportunities and you just want to be able to give them back to someone else so that they will do a better job than you did. I think because of how important it is, the things we do, it’s really important for us to get it right. So, if I have a little bit of opportunity in my little corner of the world to influence a couple students who are going to be lieutenants to do better than I did, then that’s just a fantastic opportunity. 

What do you do in your free time?

I’m married with two kids, so I love hanging out with family. My kids do sports... my oldest does cross country, both of them swim, (and) they do track and field, so hanging out and doing stuff with the boys. I’m into country music. ...I like to hunt, so I’m in the right state, obviously. Although, I am a rabid Oklahoma Sooners football fan, so if the Sooners are on TV, that’s usually where I am, in front of the TV watching them.

If you could meet anyone, who would it be?

I think I would go meet Bobby Stoops. He just retired as the head football coach of the Sooners and I would just love to sit and talk with him about football. That would be really cool.

What was the last movie you saw in a movie theater?

The last movie I saw in a movie theater was Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. I was born in the year the first Star Wars came out, and my dad is a big sci-fi fan, so I’ve kind of always been a sci-fi (fan). I think Star Wars is best viewed in a movie theater. And my kids love it. They think it’s cool, so we took them to the movie.

What’s your biggest pet peeve?

It seems like a lot of times these days people can’t just have a discussion without it turning into a really angry disagreement. It’s OK to have a talk about something. I’m like, “Man, did you really have to turn this into something bigger than it is?”

What’s your current favorite television series?

I started watching The Good Doctor. It’s pretty neat because I think it’s interesting to see how, on the one hand, he’s got some disabilities, but he’s really good at medicine, so he’s able to overcome those things because he’s so good at everything else. 

Can you speak a foreign language?

I speak a little bit of German. I’m not like Angela Merkel, but I can have a conversation about what we’re having for dinner and things like that. I lived there when I was a kid. My dad was stationed in Germany, so I guess I lived there for about three years. I took it there, obviously, and took it in high school and in college. I know enough to make my kids think I’m fluent.

Sheetz or Wawa?

Oh, Wawa for sure. I’ve had Sheetz sandwiches but (when we go to our ROTC headquarters in New Jersey) I will not eat until I get to Jersey so I can eat a Wawa hoagie. Gotta get the chicken salad with bacon.

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

I would fly. (My son) claims that super speed is better than flying, and it’s not. It’s just not.

Where is the coolest place you’ve been?

Have you ever been to Disney World? You know the princess’ castle, right? Well that castle was modeled after a palace in southern Germany called Neuschwanstein. So, there’s actually a palace that the princess castle is modeled after, and it’s absolutely gorgeous in the Bavarian Alps. 

Catherine Amoriello ’17 is an intern for SU Magazine.