Meet Our HSE Presenters!
Estella Castillo-Garrison, Ed.D
Dean of Community Education, Emeritus Institute, and K-12 Partnerships
Dr. Estella Castillo-Garrison is responsible for bringing non-credit and not-for-credit high-quality learning opportunities to people of all ages throughout the South Orange County community. She has more than 11 years of program development and management experience at the community college level. She recently directed the launch of Saddleback’s new Adult Education Department, transitioning Adult Education English as a Second Language, Citizenship, Career Technical Education, High School Equivalency and other adult-directed programs from the College’s partner K-12 districts. Dr. Castillo-Garrison's professional background includes work within the K-12 system, as well as community and four-year colleges and universities. She has taught courses in Participatory Action Research and Communication/Information and Scholarly Writing in the Educational Leadership, Administration, and Policy Doctoral Program at Pepperdine University's Graduate School of Education and Psychology. She has also taught undergraduate courses in Psychology and Sociology. Dr. Castillo-Garrison has extensive experience working with diverse populations as she served active duty military personnel and their family members on the Camp Pendleton Marine Base.
Adult Education Project Specialist, HSE
Linda Ambrosini is passionate about working with adult learners to help them reach their personal goals. She finds education key to personal and career success. Her background did not originate in the education field. She earned a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in 1983. She worked for many years as a Manufacturing Engineer in machine shop and assembly environments. Her career path changed as her family grew. In 2007 she entered the education field working with Special Education students. Her passion was found in 2009 when she started working at Capistrano Unified School District Adult School. She obtained a Part-time Adult Education credential from Cal State Long Beach. Needless to say, with her engineering background, her favorite areas to teach are math and science.
Kathryn Hanson earned a B.A. in Psychology from Chapman University, and a Lifetime Elementary Credential from Chapman College. She has had extensive experience teaching learners of all ages in elementary, special education, and adult education settings. These include Lanterman State Hospital, Park Avenue Learning Center, Cleta Harder Developmental School, North Orange County Community College District, and Pomona, Laguna Beach, and Capistrano Unified School Districts. Kathryn joined our Saddleback Adult Education staff in 2016, and now teaches High School Equivalency classes. She especially enjoys working with adults and seeing them reach their goal of earning a diploma.
Jill Hillabrant graduated from Michigan State University with a double major in Education and Human Growth & Development, and minors in English and Social Science. She taught elementary school students in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Connecticut. She earned a Community College teaching credential from Mira Costa Community College where she taught ABE math and English for marines at Camp Pendleton. Prior to joining Saddleback Adult Education, she taught ABE Math and English, as well as GED and HiSET preparation classes for more than 25 years at Capistrano Adult School. She has also been employed by Tilly's Life Center program, a self-esteem program for teens, and teaches the program in various high schools across Orange County.
Wendy Marcot has taught for 18 years in cross-cultural classrooms, including elementary, adult English as a Second Language, Parenting and Adult Basic Education math and language arts. She earned a Master’s in Education degree from Hope International University in Fullerton, California and a Bachelor’s in Human Services from California State University Fullerton. She also holds a Clear Multiple Subject teaching credential and Cross-cultural Language Acquisition Development certification.
J. Edmundo Vargas graduated from the National Autonomous University of Mexico in Mexico City as a Dental Surgeon and also studied Civil Engineering. He earned CBEST certification and also is an A+ Service Technician certified to teach Desktop Publishing, MS Office and Internet, Web Design, and Computer Repair. In addition to teaching Spanish language High School Equivalency Reading, Writing, and Math classes at Saddleback Adult Education MV, Edmundo is also a substitute Saddleback Adult ESL faculty member.
Joy Zembruski earned a master's degree in Psychology from California Southern University. She also earned a bachelor's degree in Communication Studies and Psychology from UCLA, and an Adult Education credential with a specialization in TESL from San Diego University. She has been an Adult Education instructor at Mount San Jacinto College in Temecula, Corona Norco Unified School District, and Riverside County Office of Education, where she taught classes in ESL, Adult Basic Education, General Education Diploma, High School Equivalency, and Citizenship. She is a former director of the Berlitz school in Guadalajara Mexico. Joy is also a substitute AESL faculty member for Saddleback Adult Education.