A "Grand Slam" Celebration!

Classified Service Awards 2011Congratulations to all staff members honored at the annual Classified Service Awards celebration on November 17. The festivities in the Student Activities Center centered on a fun sports theme and featured a snack bar and “athletic” skills challenges that made for a “grand slam” celebration! Click here to see the all-star lineup of staff members honored for their years of service.

35 Years - Kathy Oswald and Rebecca Wilson


35 Years - Kathy Oswald and Rebecca Wilson


30 Years - Kim Ashley, Neal Bennett, Lois Hernandez, Donna Pantaleo, Lois Peck, Yotam Ravid, Tony Solano, and Avis Wilson


25 Years - Benny Cedano, Marjorie Hall, Carol Kubota, Perfecto Micu, Carol Quiroz, David Stovall, and Valerie Wagner


20 Years - Rita Bruce, Celia Kang, Christie Killduff, Hinh Pham, Dean Starkey, Ngoc Tran, and Cat Uebele


15 Years - Michael Carter, Francisco Esqueda, Lisa George, Beverly Gilmore, Karen Lam, Anhdao Pham, Albert Romero, Fernando Vicente, and Shobhana Warrier


10 Years - Julio Arias, Francis Baylen, Capri Blount, Daniel Cahill, Judy Castillo, Martha Cisneros, Cheri Farrier, Elizabeth Flores, Myron Gooch, Patrick Grant, Anthony Gruppetta, Melvin Harris, Carmelo Juarez, Kahea Kamahele, Russell Leckey, Silvia Martinez, Willie McGee, Abetta McQueen, Monica Morrison, Susan Pickens, Christopher Sowers, Marie Tate-Green, Gary Turner, Kathy Valot, Kimberly Wilkinson, and Marie Yatman


5 Years - Maria Barajas, Luis Bonilla, Jason Haddix, Ruben Lopez, Lori Taniguchi, Mayra Thrush, and Tosh Tipton 

ECC Helping Others for the Holidays

Adopt a FamilyMany outreach activities are planned throughout campus to help others this holiday season. To start the season of giving, students in the Inter-Club Council will host a holiday party for area youngsters on December 9. In addition, everyone is invited to “adopt” one or more children of CARE/CalWORKs students for the 13th Annual CARE/CalWORKs Holiday Retention Celebration set for December 16. During the holidays, many CARE/CalWORKs students cannot afford to purchase gifts for their children. Donors may choose to “Adopt a Family” with one child or up to five children, or make a general contribution such as non-gender specific toys, books, gift certificates, or monetary donations to help purchase toys for the children. For more information, contact Lorena Perez at lrperez@ elcamino.edu or click here.

Here are some ways you can help our students:
1. You or your office can Adopt a Family or a child.

2. You can make a donation to El Camino College Foundation (in the memo put “Adopt a Family) Federal Tax ID is offered.

3. You can donate general toys, gift boxes, bags, wrapping paper, gift cards, movie tickets, or clothes.

4. Forward the information to your friends who may be interested in adopting a family.

5. All gifts can be delivered to the Student Services Center room 205-B CARE/CalWORKs office. We can also pick them up.

Any and all help is greatly appreciated!

Faculty Art Show

Be sure to visit the El Camino College Art Gallery’s newest exhibit: FACULTY SHOW 2011: Works by El Camino College Art Department Faculty through December 15. This annual exhibit features works from the college’s art instructors, showcasing an interesting mix of styles, media, and genre, while also highlighting the skills, talents, and interests of faculty members. An opening reception is scheduled for 7-9 p.m. December 1, with a gallery walk-through with Joyce Dallal at 1 p.m. December 6.

The exhibit provides a look at the aesthetic and educational philosophies advocated by the El Camino College Art Department and demonstrates an array of concepts and techniques currently characteristic of the art world. More…

Veteran Center Grand Opening

VA Panel
A grand opening for the new El Camino College Veterans Resource Center celebrated the new facility at the Student Activities Center designed to serve those students who have served our country. The new Veterans Center offers a welcoming place where students may gather and access the many services available at the college. The program opened with a rousing rendition of the National Anthem, sung by ECC music student Lord Byron Scott. In addition, student veteran Scott Hookey offered opening remarks, and the keynote address was delivered by one of the original Tuskegee Airmen, Lt. Col. Robert Friend, a member of the elite World War II African American Red Tail Squadron. The celebration closed with a tour and the unveiling of artwork donated to the Veterans Center. More...

The work “Tribute to our Troops” consists of six artwork panels each representing a branch of the U.S. Military, created and donated by the South Bay Folk Artists, a chapter of the Society of Decorative Painters. Twelve volunteers, including a few chapter artists who are also El Camino College employees, worked on the canvas panels that cover a large wall in the Veterans Center.

Support services available at the Veterans Center include access to computers, computer assistance, a study area, workshops, and referrals to a variety of resources, both at the college and in the community. Staff can help students with paperwork regarding their educational benefits, as well as assist them in becoming successful in the college environment.

Our El Camino College Distinguished Alumni Awards honorees for 2011 include: David Benoit, Musician/Composer; Donald Brann, El Segundo Councilman and Vice President of the Da Vinci Schools’ Board of Trustees; Pat Furey, Los Angeles County Principal Deputy County Counsel; Michael Montoya, Director, Southern California Edison; and Cinna Toy-Wohlmuth, Doctor of Medicine. Several past Distinguished Alumni honorees were also in attendance, including Dennis Frandey (1970- 73), James Ferreira (1983-85), James Hill (1960- 62), Nils Johnson (1956-58), Kathryn Joiner (1952-54), Jack Ledbetter (1952-54), Russ Lesser (1960-62), Cliff Meidl (1989), Wayne Overbeck (1960-62), Virginia Pfiffner (1948-50), James Russell (1958- 60), Ian Teague (1961-63), Donna Toy-Chen (1975- 77), and Hope Witkowsky (1980).

Architectural History    

Mary DrobnyLongtime art history instructor Mary Drobny recently returned from an international conference in Cuba where she was invited as a guest lecturer for the second year in a row. Drobny presented a lecture on the history of archeology in Mesoamerica at the fourth annual International Symposium of Architectural History. Her lecture mainly focused on Central America, Guatemala, and Honduras and she discussed recent excavations around Tikal, Guatemala and Copan, Honduras. Drobny also spoke about her trip this past summer to China, where she saw the famed Terracotta Warriors. For the past 10 years, Drobny has worked with the Archaeology Department of Havana, Cuba and has worked with staff members on digs throughout the city and underwater on shipwrecks. She has a master’s degree and a bachelor’s degree from California State University, Long Beach.

Photo Exhibits   

Have CompassionCongratulations to ECC advanced photography student Gloria Plascencia who was accepted into the juried show “South Bay Focus 2011” at the Torrance Art Museum. Gloria’s work will be presented in the exhibit from November 29 through December 16, with a reception set for 6:00-9:00 p.m.  December 3. The exhibition is in conjunction with the Torrance Artists Guild and the South Bay Watercolor Society. In other photo news, don’t miss the ECC fall photography exhibit at Paul's Photo in Torrance, which continues through November. Approximately 36 digital and film, black and white and color photographic images will be on display. Paul's is located at 23845 Hawthorne Boulevard in Torrance and is open Monday-Thursday and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Friday 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Facebook > Like!   

ECC Facebook ScreenshotFollow us on Facebook! More than two years ago, based on research and the ongoing trend in social networks, we found it necessary for El Camino College to have an active social networking presence to reach prospective students and communicate with current students on a daily, and sometimes hourly, basis. In this past year, our Facebook followers have grown from 2,600 in June 2010 to a whopping 6,850 in October 2011 – a 163% percent increase. That's an average of 250 new followers per month! In addition, monthly active users on our Facebook page have increased from 811 to 6,400 (a 689% increase) in the same time period.

English Honors

Congrats to English Professor Sara Blake who recently received the 2011 Nina Theiss Award for Outstanding Service to the Teaching of English. The award was presented at the biennial conference of the English Council of California Two-Year Colleges (ECCTYC) in Burlingame, California. Blake joined the El Camino College faculty in 1986 and currently serves as the division’s faculty coordinator for the college’s Basic Skills Initiative. She has a master’s and bachelor’s degree from San Diego State University and an associate degree from Palomar College. Also on the conference program were English faculty member Pete Marcoux and First Year Experience’s Cynthia Mosqueda, who highlighted ECC’s innovative pilot program of accelerated learning in reading and writing to improve student success and retention. More...

The ECCTYC is one of the chief professional organizations in California for community college instructors of English, and its membership includes departments of English and their faculty in all public and private two-year colleges in the state, including the 112 California Community Colleges. The ECCTYC also represents California two-year college English faculty at the national level as the Pacific Coast Region in the Two-Year College English Association. TYCA is part of the College Section of the National Council of Teachers of English.

Recycling Week Recap   

recycleCongratulations to the ASO, along with ECC’s “Green Team,” for sponsoring a successful Recycling Week on campus from November 7- 10. Information on recycling and items El Camino College typically recycles was available at an information table all week and a display in the Schauerman Library showed how various bottles and cans are recycled and the types of items that are recycled at ECC. The Recycling Week finale featured the Inter-Club Council Recycling Competition, which culminated at the Homecoming Rally. More...

For this program, clubs were sponsored by different departments and areas to collect recyclables. The Women in Technology Program (supported by the Industry & Technology Division) won this friendly competition for rounding up about 1,200 bottles and cans. A trophy was created completely out of recyclable materials by ECC student Nathan Wofford and presented to the I.D.E.A.S. Art Club for winning “best decorated recycling bin.” Kudos to students Jasmine Hormati and Joshua Casper, co-chairs of the ASO Sustainability Committee, and group organizer, Director of Research Irene Graff, for coordinating this event. Do your part – recycle! For more information about recycling, visit: http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/PublicEd/

Cash for College!

The El Camino College Online Scholarship Application is now open! Students with a 2.0 GPA or better and have completed, or will be in the process of completing, a minimum of six graded credit units at ECC are encouraged to apply. Scholarships range from $500 to $2,000! Scholarships may be used to help pay for tuition, books and fees. Some scholarships require a completed FAFSA, which should be completed before submitting the online scholarship application. This past May, approximately $350,000 in scholarships was awarded to about 325 El Camino College students at the annual Scholarship Awards Ceremony and Reception. Students can apply online via MyECC and click on “Scholarship Application.” For more information, refer to the Scholarship User Guide. The scholarship application deadline is February 29, 2012. Applicants must also submit a letter of recommendation and a personal essay. For more information, please contact: El Camino College Scholarship Office, 310-660-6541; or El Camino College Compton Center Scholarship Office, 310-900-1600, Ext. 2935.

Student Success: Scholar-Ballers   

Scholar Baller GroupEl Camino College student-athletes excel both on the courts and fields and in the classroom. Congratulations to the 40 Warrior student-athletes who were recently honored as Scholar-Ballers for the Fall 2011 season. The Scholar-Baller organization recognizes academic success and those athletes who excel in academics by achieving a 3.0 GPA or higher. Click here to view a complete list of Fall 2011 Scholar-Ballers. More...

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The Art of Translation 

En Marcha Hacia La LibertadECC Spanish language instructor and artist Claudia Prada recently translated “March to Freedom, A Holocaust Memoir” by Edith Singer into Spanish. The book is available via amazon.com, and is also currently available for purchase at the Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles. Claudia has master’s degrees from UCLA in Spanish-American literature and theater, and film and television. In 1995, she was awarded the UCLA Film and Television Graduate Woman of the Year Award, as well as the Edward James Olmos Award in film and television.

Physician Honors   

Congratulations to our team orthopedic surgeon and his group for being named “Top Doctors” by Our South Bay. Dr. William Mealer, of Beach Cities Orthopedics & Sports Medicine, is an alumnus of El Camino College, where he has served as athletic team physician for more than 20 years. Mealer earned a bachelor’s degree from USC and then graduated from the University of Miami Medical School where he also completed his orthopedic surgery residency. In his spare time, Mealer enjoys sailing with his wife and three daughters.

El Camino College Compton Center Hires Four New Faculty Members

Four new full-time faculty members joined the El Camino College Compton Center community this fall. We are happy to welcome: Karla Coti, chemistry instructor; Brent Kooiman, auto collision and repair instructor; Dale Ueda, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) instructor; and Cassandra Washington, child development instructor. For bios on our newest instructors, Click Here.

Karla Coti
Karla CotiChemistry instructor. After graduating Magna Cum Laude in 2004 from California State University, Los Angeles with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry, Coti went on to earn a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) in March 2010 where she was awarded a Dissertation Year Fellowship. She has served as a teaching assistant for UCLA’s Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, and as a student research advisor at Northwestern University, UCLA and CSU Los Angeles. Coti most recently was an adjunct chemistry instructor at both Glendale Community College and El Camino College Compton Center.

Brent Kooiman
Brent KooimanAuto Collision and Repair instructor. Kooiman brings 30 years of experience in the auto collision repair and refinishing industry. He has worked in every aspect of the field including estimator, technician, and collision repair shop owner, as well as serving as an instructor. He earned his associate degree in automotive collision repair from Cerritos College. Kooiman has also served as an adjunct instructor at both Cerritos College and El Camino College.

Dale Ueda
Dale UedaHeating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) instructor. After earning a bachelor's degree in business administration from California State University, Dominguez Hills, and an initial career with the United Parcel Service, Ueda completed the HVAC apprenticeship program through the state of California. He is now a certified journeyman with more than 11 years in HVAC and refrigeration fitting experience. Since 1999, Ueda has served as an adjunct instructor at El Camino College and joined the adjunct faculty at ECC Compton Center in 2009, where he has contributed to program review and Student Learning Outcome statement development for the HVAC programs at both locations. Ueda has also served as an adjunct faculty member at Long Beach City College and Orange Coast College.

Cassandra Washington
Cassandra WashingtonChild Development instructor. An alumna of El Camino College, Washington received a bachelor’s degree in liberal studies from California State University, Dominguez Hills and a master’s degree in education at California State University, Los Angeles with a minor in early childhood education.

She has served as an adjunct instructor at ECC Compton Center since 2009 and has more than 12 years experience in early childhood care and education. Since 1995, she has worked at the Los Angeles County Office of Education as an educator and tutor helping to prepare students for the CAHSSE. Since 2006, Washington has also served as a youth counselor at the Starview Adolescent Treatment Center in Torrance.

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