The building was renamed the Bob and Barbara Ellis Education Building in honor of the two former university professors who donated $1.4 million to create a scholarship endowment for credential students.
“I think having a building named for us is kind of overwhelming,” Barbara Ellis said at the ceremony. “It was certainly not anything that we had thought about, but we’re very excited. I have to admit that I’ve been driving by this building, looking at those letters up there and feeling so proud that we’re making a difference.”
CSULB President Jane Close Conoley said at the ceremony that the donation from the Ellises touches on the core mission of access in the university’s Declare fundraising campaign. Conoley also noted that the donation will help students focus on their studies.
“There’s no amount of money that we could give in return that makes up for what [a CSULB] education has meant,” Barbara said.
College of Education Dean Marquita Grenot-Scheyer said that CSULB prepares the largest number of elementary teachers and second-largest number of secondary teachers across the California State University system.
“As you may know, educator preparation is central to the mission of the Cal State system and it’s at the heart of what we do at our university,” Grenot-Scheyer said.
Barbara and Bob both earned their teaching credentials at CSULB, where Bob also earned a Master of Arts in secondary education and Barbara received a Bachelor of Arts in social science.