Shirley A. Beck

Shirley A. Beck

Shirley A. Beck 1942-2018

“Right from the start, from her being a protective and supportive sibling, who taught me how to tie my shoes, to my tying hers as caregiver and advocate, my beloved sister Shirley and I had a genuine bond. From playing “school” as children to both choosing education as our professions, we forged another bond. My “big sister” was also my best friend and perfect travel companion (she shopped while I roamed the terrain and museums).

Having had an unsatisfactory kindergarten experience herself, Shirley vowed to provide a nurturing, positive classroom of her own one day. She started early during our childhood in Buffalo, New York, “teaching” at the blackboard in the basement of our neighbor friend. Not only was it a cool site in the hot, humid summer and cozy during freezing winter days, she made it fun! Shirley delighted and instructed us with songs, stories and colorful art projects.

A second generation American, she became the first in our peer group of cousins to graduate from college, Long Beach State in 1964. She then embarked on 33 fulfilling years as a kindergarten teacher in the Cypress School District. True to her East Coast and parochial school upbringing, she prioritized organization, good manners and style. Always a lady, she set and modeled standards of behavior and performance. She loved her charges and they (and their parents) loved her! In fact, she received (at least!) one marriage proposal from a young pupil, maybe from one of those in the photo. Retirement in 1997 took Shirley and her husband to the Paso Robles area for a bucolic life, complete with grape cultivating, before she relocated to San Clemente." – Carol Beck

The College of Education (CED) expresses gratitude to all scholarship donors who continue to enhance the quality of education students experience at CSULB.


This Early Childhood Education Scholarship in Memory of Shirley A. Beck was established by her sister, Carol Beck, a CSULB alum (1968 BA Spanish, French, History) and USF (1978 MA Education) and a teacher for 34 years at Los Alamitos H.S. This Scholarship is intended to foster other early childhood educators in their pursuit of guiding our most precious citizens, our children.