Off the field, Chris Scott trains to be a Marine officer
Sports | Michael Urch
Apart from his role on the soccer team, senior goalkeeper Chris Scott is preparing to be a Marine officer through training in the Marine Platoon Leaders Class (PLC). | Photo for The Clarion courtesy of Sports Information
Standing at six feet and weighing 175 pounds, men’s soccer goalkeeper Chris Scott relishes his role as net minder because of how it brings a unique excitement to the sport. Scott craves the challenge and thrill provided in goal, but his quest for adrenaline doesn’t stop when he exits the pitch.
Before the start of this year’s season, Scott spent six weeks of his summer being challenged physically and mentally in Quantico, Virg. at officer candidate school. He has been preparing to become a Marine officer through training in the Marine Platoon Leaders Class (PLC).
“Every little kid wants to be either a cop or in the military. I still want to be a cop or in the military, so I guess I never grew up,” he said.
The combination of motivation and humor is something that Scott implements into every aspect of his life, and it is noticed by his peers and his coaches alike.
“He’s pretty intense [and] pretty fun,” said coach Jeremy Iwaszkowiec.
According to his teammate Ryan Thompson Scott leads by example and has a very high level of motivation.
“Chris is a role model for me,” Thompson said. “He is motivated and he has a goal.”
Through the PLC program, Scott committed to two 6-week summer training camps. The first was a few summers ago, and he has now completed two summers of training.
“It’s a tough program [to go through] to be an officer in the Marines…it’s insane physically what he has to do.” Thompson said. “He can run a sub-18 three-mile and do 20 pull-ups.”
The program is similar to ROTC, but the candidates have a completely normal school year. It is only during the summers that those in the PLC program have to commit time to the military, and Scott has no regrets about this training.
“When I was there I said, ‘man I can’t wait to get home,’ but getting to know the guys is the best part of [the training] and now I miss it,” he said.
There are numerous parallels between being in the PLC program and playing collegiate soccer, namely the team dynamic. The brotherly bond is what Scott misses most about his time in Virginia, and it is also what he enjoys most about being a student-athlete at Bethel.
“Being on the team is the best part,” Scott said. “The soccer part can come and go, but the team makes it all worth it.”
Scott is looking forward to building relationships with fellow Marines and being a solid Christian in a different environment.
“Chris comes across as a tough, hardcore Marine,” Iwaszkowiec said. “But he’s got a heart and some wisdom in there that people don’t get to know and see.”
After graduating in May, Scott will be commissioned for four and a half years of service with the Marines. This will be followed by an additional four years of service in the reserve.
“Chris is really excited and ready to leave Bethel and tackle what’s next in his life,” Iwaszkowiec said. “I’m excited to see where he goes in the next ten years.”