Several years ago, the late Mrs. Ricks and her advisor William Collister established the Ricks Endowment fund. Many Ricks Center families and friends have continued to support this particular fund, and recent policy has called for reinvestment of all proceeds. Ricks Center's primary financial goal continues to be the growth of this endowment. Over the years, Ricks Center has continued to receive support from families, foundations and friends of the school. Most often this support is directed toward a particular purpose, such as the Charles and Thalia Considine Endowment for Educational Excellence at Ricks Center, a $1 million endowment gift received in 2001 to support teaching excellence. Ricks Center and University administrators work closely with the Considine family, which includes three Ricks Center alumni, to clearly delineate the spending policy for the proceeds of this generous gift. Periodically, Ricks Center faculty members are honored with an award from this endowment. Selection criteria include overall exceptional performance, demonstrated commitment to Ricks Center and promotion of the "how to think" philosophy.
Providing for the future is the responsibility of us all. Each year faculty and families commit to making a difference in the lives of gifted young students. These young people come from a wide variety of social and economic backgrounds. The future of many of these young students is dependent upon what can be provided for them now. All faculty, staff, and families are encouraged to donate whatever they can to the annual campaign each year. Monies from this campaign are directed to a specifically named purpose, such as technology, the arts, the endowment, or to other areas as needed.
Ricks Center's Advisory Board was created in 1994 to strengthen Ricks Center, to support its mission, and to ensure its longevity. In this role, the Board provides tangible support to Ricks Center, offers directional advice and counsel, calls on outside experts as needed, and advocates for Ricks Center within a variety of communities. The Board works with the director of the school to provide this support.
The Family School Organization was formed in 1991 and is comprised of the parents and/or guardians of Ricks Center students and all teachers, administrators and staff at Ricks Center. Its mission is to foster and encourage participation in the school community. The FSO sponsors parent education nights and community events. These provide opportunities to engage in topics on a wide variety of issues related to parenting gifted children. Subjects include such focus areas as psychological aspects of giftedness; implementing an integrated curriculum model; parenting a gifted child; and general, topical parenting questions viewed through the lens of gifted characteristics. The FSO organizes an annual fundraiser to support special projects and purchases for the school. Family members are encouraged to take an active role in the FSO.