Profile Photo: Scott Morris, Ph.D.

Morris, Ph.D.

Phone: 903.233.3362

  • Associate Professor of Chemistry


  • Ph.D., Chemistry, University of Arkansas
  • B.S., Biochemistry - Biology Minor, Stephen F. Austin State University


  • Associate Professor of Chemistry, LeTourneau University (2022 - present)
  • Assistant Professor of Chemistry, East Texas Baptist University (2018 - 2022)
  • Online Adjunct Instructor, University of New England (2017)
  • Process Development Chemist, WeylChem US (2016 - 2017)


I grew up in the Houston area, where my life typically consisted of school, baseball, and simply being outside.  I chose to study Biochemistry at Stephen F. Austin State University because I enjoyed to coursework and many of the concepts came naturally to me.  Being a first-generation college student, earning a bachelor’s degree was an incredible milestone in my life.  I decided to study organic chemistry at the University of Arkansas, which I enjoyed because of the complexity and creativity of the subject.  I also enjoyed the hands-on nature of laboratory work.  Though I enjoyed my graduate work, my life was completely changed when I became born again during my second year.  This transformation and shift in worldview changed everything about me.  I still enjoyed chemistry, but now knew the Creator who stood behind everything I was studying.  I later became involved in a mobile children’s ministry, bringing the Gospel to at-risk communities.  By the Lord’s leading, I have also traveled to different countries, engaging in baseball ministry, village evangelism, and orphans and widows ministry.  After working in industry for a year, I felt called to devote my life to teaching in Christian higher education.  I am thankful for this calling, as I now get to serve students by teaching them chemistry from a Christian worldview and working diligently to help them achieve their career goals.  Titus 3:3-7 accurately describes my testimony and how my life has been impacted as a result: “For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”

Personal Statement

I will never forget an activity I was tasked with in 5th grade: select an element from the periodic table and present your findings to the class (I chose nitrogen, by the way, because I like the number 7).  From that moment forward, I was hooked!  Chemistry as a subject has always fascinated me.  The idea that biological information is stored in a macromolecule known as DNA.  The amazing trends and organization of the periodic table of elements.  The way slight differences in the arrangement of atoms can give way to entirely different outcomes.  More than that, I enjoy the way chemistry builds critical thinking skills as a subject, technical and observational skills in the laboratory, and encourages creativity in order to solve complex issues facing various civilizations.  Chemistry is an absolutely wonderful subject!  However, I did not fully recognize its beauty until I became a follower of Jesus during my second year of graduate school.  Knowing there is a Creator that stands behind these magnificent processes completely left me in awe.  The complexity of life, the incredible patterns and organization of the periodic table, and the innumerable ways atoms can be bonded together should give us pause, challenging us to stop and think about the One behind it all.  The more I studied chemistry, be it as a graduate student, a process development chemist, or a faculty member, my faith has only been strengthened.  Professor James Tour at Rice University captures this sentiment well when he stated the following: “I build molecules for a living.  I can’t begin to tell you how difficult that job is.  I stand in awe of God because of what he has done through his creation.  My faith has been increased by my research… if you really study science, it will bring you closer to God.”

Why Chemistry?

Chemistry is the study of matter.  Though it is a challenging major, it is a worthwhile endeavor and can lead to a satisfying career.  Studying chemistry opens the door to a variety of career paths, including research and development, pharmaceuticals, forensics, quality control specialist, professional school (medical, dental, pharmacy, veterinary, physician’s assistant, etc.), patent law, teaching, sales representative, and consulting work.  At LeTourneau University, students benefit from small class sizes, personal interactions with professors, research opportunities with faculty mentors, ability to be employed as a laboratory assistant, supplemental instruction (SI) leader, and/or a tutor, frequent science seminars, learning how to use sophisticated instrumentation, and, most importantly, learn course content from a Christian worldview.  The opportunities abound here at LeTourneau University.  We are all eager to teach you the amazing aspects of chemistry while keeping Christ at the center.  Please consider joining what God is doing here at LeTourneau!

Other Interests

Wife and children, baseball, fellowship, racquetball, hiking, woodworking, traveling, outdoor cooking, exercising, Bible studies, apologetics, and coffee.

Research Interests

  • Coding to automate chemistry experiments
  • Integrating 3-D printing applications to organic molecule syntheses
  • Visible light photoredox catalysis
  • Synthesis of substituted 2-aminobenzothiazoles 
  • Cascade reaction development to access synthetically challenging molecules


  • Zheng, N. and Morris, S.A., New Reactivity of Amine Radical Cations and their Related Species (Applications in Organic Synthesis, Chapter 51). In: Bahnemann, D.W. and Patrocinio, A.O.T., ed., Springer Handbook of Inorganic Photochemistry. Springer, 2022, pp.1509-1535.
    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-63713-2. ISBN: 978-3-030-63712-5.
  • Jana, S., Sarkar, S., and Morris, S.A., Recent Developments Towards the Synthesis of Paroxetine: A 3,4-Disubstituted Piperidine, Tetrahedron, 2020, 76, article 131215.
    DOI: 10.1016/j.tet.2020.131215.
  • Morris, S.A., Nguyen, T. and Zheng, N., Visible Light Mediated Cycloaddition Reactions (Chapter 5). In: C. Stephenson, MacMillan, D.W.C. and Yoon, T. ed., Visible Light Photocatalysis in Organic Chemistry, 1st ed. Wiley-VCH, 2018, pp.129-158. DOI: 10.1002/9783527674145.
    ISBN: 978-3-527-33560-2.
  • Morris, S.A., Wang J., and Zheng, N., The Prowess of Photogenerated Amine Radical Cations in Cascade Reactions: From Carbocycles to Heterocycles, Accounts of Chemical Research, 2016, 49, 1957-1968. DOI: 10.1021/acs.accounts.6b00263.
  • Morris, S.A., Nguyen, T.H., and Zheng, N., Diastereoselective C-N/C-O and C-N/C-N Bond Formation Tandems Initiated by Visible Light: Synthesis of Fused N-Arylindolines, Advanced Synthesis and Catalysis, 2015, 357, 2311-2316. DOI: 10.1002/adsc.201500317.
  • Nguyen, T.H., Morris, S.A., and Zheng, N., Intermolecular [3+2] Annulation of Cyclopropylanilines with Alkynes, Enynes, and Diynes via Visible Light Photocatalysis, Advanced Synthesis and Catalysis, 2014, 356, 2831-2837. DOI: 10.1002/adsc.201400742. 

Programs in Chemistry and Physics

Chemistry and Physics Faculty

Click here to access the schedule for science seminars.