Coaches & Staff


Ryan Byrnes

I earned my BS in Kinesiology from California State University Long Beach and my MS in Kinesiology from California State University Fullerton.  I have been professionally involved in many areas of the fitness and human performance field.  My professional experience includes working with the general population as a personal trainer and Crossfit coach, coaching a competitive weightlifting club, working with athletes at the middle school, high school, collegiate, and professional levels, and training tactical athletes during my time in the Marine Corps.

Fitness and human performance are not only professional passions of mine, but personal ones as well.  When I’m not coaching individuals to achieve their goals in the weight room, I can often be found pursuing goals of my own in the same place.  Previously those goals have included training for competitive endeavors such as weightlifting competitions, rugby.  Although I’m not currently training for any competitive events, I still spend much of my free time in the gym challenging myself and reaping the therapeutic benefits of a good day’s work out.  When I’m not working out I can typically be found surfing at the beach, wandering around outside with my dogs, or staying in with my nose in a book.

Matthew Prado

Matt is a long time Whittier native who is now working as the Fitness Marketing Coordinator for the Fitness and Human Performance Center. Matt received a Bachelor of Arts from Whittier College in 2016 where he played on the Men’s Lacrosse team for the Poets. Matt continues to follow his love of the game by coaching the Varsity Men’s Lacrosse team at Servite High School in Anaheim as well as plays on the Newport Men’s Club Lacrosse team on the weekends. Matt loves a solid high five as well as puppies so if you’re ever looking to cheer him up either one of those things will work. Matt is excited to be a part of the SCU family and looks forward to the opportunity to help grow the SCU name within the community.

Cassie Ammen

Cassie joins SCU as a Fitness Marketing Coordinator for the Fitness and Human Performance Center. She has an MS in Conflict Analysis and spent several years in Communications and Events Management at George Mason University, trying to help spread alternative ways of solving conflicts to the DC area.  As a long time athlete, Cassie switched careers to focus exclusively on fitness as a Personal Trainer and Kettlebell Instructor.   Working at SCU allows her to combine her skill-set and passion to help grow the fitness community and make a positive difference in people’s lives through movement and access to holistic health.

Currently she competes in powerlifting and hopes to get more women involved in strength sports here on campus; but has also trained in a variety of sports as a capoeirista, triathlete and ultrarunner.  When not at work, she can be found hiking with her adorable dog, lifting heavy things, or testing out new flavors of ice cream.

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