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Ricks Center for Gifted Children Records

 Collection
Identifier: U338
Ricks Center at the University of Denver was founded in 1984 and was then known as the University Center for Gifted Young Children. The program has grown into a school serving approximately 250 children from three years of age through the eighth grade. The collection consists of historical records, photographs, and other memorabilia related to the founding and operation of the school.

Dates

  • 1984 - 2010

Creator

Extent

28.75 Linear Feet (14 record boxes, 1 flat box, 2 custom crates, 1 custom box.)

Scope and Contents

This series has been separated currently into nine (9) series and two (2) sub-series: Series 1 Administrative Papers, Sub-Series 1 College of Education, Sub-Series 2 Other Gifted/Talented Programs; Series 2 Lectures, Presentations, and Speakers; Series 3 Professional Associations and Conferences; Series 4 Norma Lu Hafenstein; Series 5 Audio-Visual Materials; Series 6 was transferred to M454; Series 7 Photographs; Series 8 Memorabilia; Series 9 Scrapbooks

Biographical / Historical

Ricks Center at the University of Denver was founded in 1984 and was then known as the University Center for Gifted Young Children. In the summer of 1984, 24 four and five- year old children gathered for a month-long session of enriched, thematic activities designed to bring gifted children together in a supportive learning environment. Following an exciting summer project, parents expressed enthusiasm for continuing the program into the school year. With support and guidance of many people, the University Center for Gifted Young Children was founded in the fall of 1984 by Dr. Norma Lu Hafenstein. The program has grown into a school serving approximately 250 children from three years of age through the eighth grade. Faculty at the school has changed from graduate students to full-time, experienced, certified classroom teachers, specialists in content area, and administrators. The University of Denver continues to provide faculty consultants, fundraising support, mentorships, and classroom opportunities for Ricks Center students. The leadership and support of Chancellor Daniel L. Ritchie provided the foundation and inspiration for continued growth and the pursuit of excellence. Chancellor Robert Coombe provided and Chancellor Rebecca Chopp continues to provide support for Ricks Center as an integral part of the University of Denver. A major fundraising drive in 1990 resulted in funding for a new facility. The Temple Hoyne Buell Foundation, Mrs. Ruth O.W. Johnson, current families, and several anonymous major donors were essential to the success of the drive. In November 1991, Ricks Center for Gifted Children was dedicated and named after Alta Merle Ricks, the major benefactress. A new addition was completed in 1996, adding ten classrooms. The new facility was designed by architects who encouraged the children to contribute their ideas, and today it stands as a reflection of the unique learning needs of its students. The school now enjoys a building designed specifically for educating gifted young people. Classrooms, a science and visual arts laboratory, library, foreign language labs, a multi-purpose room (for physical education, drama, music), and administrative office space are all housed in one building. Outdoor playgrounds are located on the site, and students also have access to many University of Denver facilities.

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections and Archives Repository

Contact:
2150 East Evans Avenue
Denver CO 80208
(303) 871-3428