Estella Rash, a childcare assistant at UMSL, received the 2014 PNC Bank Early Childhood Education Award from The St. Louis American Foundation on Sept. 12. (Photo by August Jennewein)

A child’s love for learning begins at birth, and it’s said that those early years are the most crucial for making young minds thirsty for knowledge and discovery.

It takes a very special educator to guide the inquisitive nature of children and Estella Rash is one of those unique people.

Rash has been a childcare assistant at the University Child Development Center at the University of Missouri–St. Louis since 1981. She has taught hundreds of children, many of who are now adults and credit her as the person who inspired them to learn.

In honor of her outstanding service to children, she received the 2014 PNC Bank Early Childhood Education Award from The St. Louis American Foundation Sept. 12 during the 27th annual Salute to Excellence in Education Gala at the America’s Center in St. Louis.

“She’s the type of person who makes a lifelong connection with children,” said Anne Winkler, professor of economics at UMSL, whose two sons attended the center and had Rash as a teacher. “I could not have been as productive as I have been without the excellent child development center and its staff. I mention UCDC as an important campus resource when recruiting faculty. Stella is a major part of that story. She is in the hearts of so many children, including my sons, and in the hearts of grateful parents, like myself and my husband.”

Rash also received the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Office/Technical at the UMSL State of the University Address at 3 p.m. Sept. 17 in the J.C. Penney Building Auditorium.

The St. Louis American featured Rash in a recent article. Click here to read the article.

Visit www.stlamerican.com to learn more about 27th annual Salute to Excellence in Education Gala.

The UMSL Experience

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Jen Hatton

Jen Hatton

Eye on UMSL: The flavor of homecoming
Eye on UMSL: The flavor of homecoming

Senior business major Jalen Walker-Wright gets a cup of southwest chili from Vanessa Loyd and Erin Schaeffer during last Thursday’s homecoming Chili Feed.

Eye on UMSL: The flavor of homecoming

Senior business major Jalen Walker-Wright gets a cup of southwest chili from Vanessa Loyd and Erin Schaeffer during last Thursday’s homecoming Chili Feed.

Eye on UMSL: The flavor of homecoming

Senior business major Jalen Walker-Wright gets a cup of southwest chili from Vanessa Loyd and Erin Schaeffer during last Thursday’s homecoming Chili Feed.