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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Everyone Has a Story: J. Christopher Maloney

Erich Healy / Arizona Daily Wildcat

Professor of Philosophy and Department of Philosophy Head, J. Christopher Maloney, enjoys running and cycling as a way to experience ones surroundings. The TRAD 104 professor hopes to have as as large an impact on his students as a former professor had on him.
Erich Healy
Erich Healy / Arizona Daily Wildcat Professor of Philosophy and Department of Philosophy Head, J. Christopher Maloney, enjoys running and cycling as a way to experience one’s surroundings. The TRAD 104 professor hopes to have as as large an impact on his students as a former professor had on him.

“”Everyone Has a Story”” is a semiweekly segment in the Arizona Daily Wildcat that aims to tell the story of an interesting person on the UA campus. This week, the Daily Wildcat interviewed J. Christopher Maloney, the head of the department of philosophy and the professor for traditions and cultures 104, Mind, Matter and God.

Maloney could not be any happier with his decision to enter the teaching profession.

“”When I was an undergraduate, I was thinking bank robbery or something else,”” he said. “”This seemed like such a better alternative.””

It wasn’t until Maloney entered college that he became inspired by his history professor freshman year. The class had about 500 students, but Maloney made it a point to get to know him.

“”He was just the most engaging lecturer I had ever heard, and there was a group of students sitting around having lunch with him and so I just shoehorned my way into the table and started listening, and the discussion was wonderful,”” Maloney said. “”I thought to myself, God, what a great way to spend your life. It wasn’t that it seemed like it was fun. It just struck me as fulfilling and rewarding and just filling your mind with what you wanted to be there.””

Although Maloney teaches philosophy at the UA, he has always found history enticing.

“”History has always been, for me, a really good story — best story there is,”” Maloney said. “”I did discover how deeply rewarding and fulfilling it is to find yourself thinking really hard and really deeply about what’s fascinating. And then it just turned out for me that philosophy was the most fascinating stuff.””

Even at the end of the day, Maloney never finds his job stressful. He spends his days in the moment, enjoying every aspect.

“”I don’t think of work as something to escape from,”” he said. “”One of the wonderful things about being a professor is that I never know what time it is. I have to look sometimes, but I never watch the clock. I never find myself thinking ‘Oh my God, two more hours to go. I got to get through this.’ There is just never enough time to do everything I want to do.””

In addition to his teaching career, Maloney also enjoys spending his time outdoors.

“”I like to run, to cycle, and I love hiking,”” Maloney said. “”Living in Tucson is like waking up and finding yourself in a candy store. What I mostly enjoy about running and cycling is the concentration it takes, so when I find myself cycling, I’m just all there, concentrating on what’s there in that moment.””

Maloney has found his life to be rewarding and completely fulfilling. As for the future, Maloney plans to live day by day and continue to do what he is so passionate about — teaching.

“”I would like to get up tomorrow morning to find out that the sun came up and come back here and do what I like to do so well … I find myself thinking I’ve only got so many more years until retirement. There is so much I want to do. For future endeavors I find myself thinking, ‘Can I have more of the same?’ That would be just fine with me.””

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