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Sara Di Fiori

Sara Di Fiori

Sara Di Fiori teaches Geology and Oceanography in the Earth Science Department. A Los Angeles native, she discovered her love of Earth Science as a student at Pasadena City College. After transferring to UCLA, she pursed her BS and MS in geology. Much of her field experience comes from months spent traveling, teaching and mapping in Baja California, Mexico.

Outside of geology, Sara's passion is for the arts, as she is especially interested in work that explores the boundaries of Art and Science.

Favorite Quote: "The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious - the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science.". - Albert Einstein


Matt Ebiner

Matt Ebiner

Matt EbinerMatt Ebiner has seen a good portion of the world but has always lived in Southern California. Growing up in the San Gabriel Valley, he attended Bishop Amat High School in the late 1970s, then went on to Mt. San Antonio College as a biology major. "I was planning to become a podiatrist," he recalls, "but the less practical side of me decided to switch to photography." After a brief stint as a photography major, he changed to geology, but eventually discovered geography his junior year. By then he was at UCLA, where he eventually earned a B.A. and M.A. in geography. He started teaching part-time at El Camino in 1986 and was hired full-time in 1991. Matt is very active in regional geographic organizations, having served as president of Los Angeles Geographical Society (1995) and as council member in the California Geographical Society (1997-present).

As a middle child in a family of 15 brothers and sisters (yes, all from the same 2 parents and yes, they are Catholic), a competitive streak developed in Matt at an early age, with several older brothers setting high standards in their endeavors and accomplishments. He became an outstanding distance runner, competing in the U.S. Olympic Trials Marathon in 1988 and 1992 and winning races in Spain, France, Brazil, and Australia. A lover of mountains and trails, he ran the 222-mile John Muir Trail through the Sierra Nevada over the course of 9 days in the summer of 1994, scenery he considers to be the most beautiful in the world. Matt is also the 10-time champion of the Mt. Baldy Race to the Top and one of his goals is to keep winning the race until the year 2001, twenty years after his first victory there.

Matt sees the world as a magnificent and fascinating place, and his travels continually confirm that. He has visited 72 countries as of 1999, and some of his favorites are New Zealand, Chile, Myanmar, India, and the USA. He got his first big taste of travel as a 19-year old when he faced a summer with energy, enthusiasm, and time on his hands. Consequently, he did a 49-day bicycle ride across the USA by himself and considers the 4000-mile trip to be one of his proudest accomplishments. His travels have greatly enhanced the geography classes he teaches at El Camino, and despite living 35 miles from campus, he doesn't mind the commute, especially when he can listen to Dennis Prager on the radio. Besides that, Matt is avidly interested in photography, backpacking, computers, investing, and reading, and he looks forward to many more enjoyable years of teaching geography to El Camino students.


Julienne Gard

Julienne Gard

Julienne Gard teaches Geography in the Earth Science Department. Her favorite courses are Physical Geography, Physical Geography Lab, Meteorology, and Geographic Information Systems (GIS). Born and raised in Los Angeles, her college education was also entirely local: it started at Long Beach City College, after which she transferred to USC for a bachelor’s in geography, then to CSU Long Beach for a master’s in geography, and then back to USC for a Ph.D. in geography.

Most of her inspiration and joy come from a combination of family, travel, and music. She loves international travel, going to coffee shops, listening to music, sewing (counted cross stitch in particular), attending concerts, taking road trips, playing banjo, and spending time with family all the while.

Chuck Herzig

Chuck Herzig

Dr. Chuck Herzig teaches Geology, Geology Lab, and Oceanography in the Earth Science Department.

Chuck Herzig was the oldest of six kids and went to JFK International High School in Berlin, Germany. He received a BS in Geology (philosophy minor) at Dickinson College in Pennsylvania. Chuck got his MS in Geology at SUNY at Stonybrook, N.Y. by researching the rocks in the Sierra foothills near Yosemite. He subsequently received his PhD in Geology at UC Riverside, with studies of volcanic rocks in the Santa Ana Mountains. Dr. Herzig spent a year in Japan doing post-doc studies in geology.

Chuck Herzig has taught at a wide variety of schools, including San Diego State University, Grossmont Community College, and Ramona (Riverside) High School.

Chuck Herzig's hobbies include bicycling and traveling (see photos), including many bicycle trips through Europe. Other hobbies include reading, collect old books, drawing, and hiking.

Favorite Quote: "The art of vision is to see the invisible".

Joe Holliday

Joe Holliday

Joe Holliday is a full time professor in the Earth Science Department. He teaches Oceanography, Geology, and Geology Field Lab during the Fall and Spring semesters.

Joe was raised near the Adirondack Mountains in upstate New York . He received his B.A. degree in Pre-Med and Geology at Hamilton College and his M.S. in Geology at Oregon State University. Joe created geologic maps and performed oil well analysis on offshore oil platforms for Unocal for ten years, before leaving for a more environmentally and socially friendly teaching career.

Joe Holliday likes to travel and has been all over the world. He has visited some of the most exciting earth science locations, such as African waterfalls, Asian coasts, South American Andes, Japanese volcanoes, Iceland geysers, New Zealand mountains and Mexican coral reefs. His favorite places in America are Kilauea volcano in Hawaii, the Sierra Nevada, and the iceberg-filled Alaska fjords (where he lives every July).

Joe is also an avid photographer, gardener, and home restorer. He is also interested in theater and historic preservation and is involved with environmental issues in Los Angeles County.

Favorite Quote: "The person who has lived the most is not the one with the most years, but the one with the richest experiences" - J. Rosseau

Joe Holliday Joe Holliday Joe Holliday
Jim Noyes

Jim Noyes

Jim Noyes teaches Oceanography and the History of Science.

Jim always knew that he wanted to be a scientist. When he was little, he wanted to be a paleontologist, and he loved to read a book on dinosaurs to his Grandmother. (She had read it to him so many times that he had memorized it.) As he got older, though, Jim became more and more interested in the fundamental laws that govern the operation of the universe, and choose to study physics at the University of California, San Diego. After graduating with his B.S. in physics, he was drawn back into the earth sciences for graduate school. Jim received his M.S. and Ph.D. in physical oceanography from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography for his work on wave-driven currents on beaches. In his final years of graduate school and after many years of tutoring (and supervising tutors), Jim decided that teaching was more fun than research, in part because of his abiding interest in epistemology (why we believe what we believe). In addition to teaching oceanography and the history of science, he has also taught physics and statistics at Miramar College and the University of San Diego.

Jim is an avid reader, enjoys partner dancing (his favorite dances include fast waltzes, fox trots, cha cha?s, and west coast swings) and playing board games, and has started taking piano classes at El Camino College.

Favorite Quotes:
"The greatest temptation for a human being is not to be tyrannical, but to be indifferent."
"Have the courage to be ignorant of a great number of things, in order to avoid the calamity of being ignorant of everything." - Sydney Smith
"To the Pope [John Paul II], science and the wonder it evokes in us is not only not an obstacle to belief, but a privileged path to it." - Monsignor Lorenzo Albacete
"The Second Law of Thermodynamics implies that one day everything will be room temperature. It also implies you should dance while you can." - from Arcadia by Tom Stoppard

Last Published 12/21/16