Greene, Earnest S. (1903-1989)


Greene, Earnest S. (1903-1989)

Date Updated




Academic Rank


Year Retired from SJSU


Educational Background

Stanford University, 1939 Ph.D.

Stanford University, 1930 MA

San Jose State, 1927 AB

Teaching Experience

San Jose State University, 1927-1968

Employee Classes for Eitel‑McCullough, 1950

Army Classes at Stanford, WWII

Administrative and Professional Experience

Jennings Radio, WWII.

Selected Publications

Principles of Physics, Prentice‑Hall.

Lab Manual, General Physics.

Lab Manual, Physics of Sound.

Personal Commentary

Prepared by Dorothy Givens Greene

Two years at Stanford depleted Earnest's lifelong‑savings‑for‑college. He stayed out of school for a year, but you've heard of the GREAT DEPRESSION? So he earned his AB at San Jose State Teachers' College, and since it was a teachers' college, he was obliged to do student teaching. Luckily for Earnest, the science department needed an instructor for a Saturday morning chemistry lab; so that was given to him for his practice teaching assignment. Voila! Career goal changed from research chemist to college professor. I'm sure he was never sorry, because he lived

to see that light of comprehension in a student's eyes. I shall quote from his textbook, Principles of Physics, to show his idea of education.

"A mind open in the sense of a tube or tunnel is no help. Neither should your mind be open in the sense that the door to a warehouse may be open. It should be open in the sense that the receiving door to a factory is open: open to accept raw materials for use in fabricating various products which may be far more useful, beautiful, and valuable than the materials from which they were made ...."

As for me, his wife for 53 years, I'm sure that, of the thousands who passed through his classes in 41 years, several hundred learned to think.

Date Completed: 3/97

Adapted from: Biographies of Retired Faculty San Jose State University 1997: A Project of the Emeritus Faculty Association of San Jose State University. San Jose, CA: The University, 1997.


Greene, Earnest S. (1903-1989)