Phase IV of this retrospective collection of director’s messages began a mere 15 years ago – halfway into the 30 years we are commemorating – yet the closer we get to “now” the more nostalgic I feel. This is especially true as I reflect upon this five-year period.
The Belin-Blank Center has always been a part of the College of Education, but our home is in a building named in honor of Myron and Jacqueline Blank, who provided the lead gift for the building. We had a wonderful ribbon-cutting ceremony in the fall of 2003 and moved into the Blank Honors Center on one of the coldest days in January of 2004.
It was joy to have Myron Blank participate in this important milestone. Indeed, we honor our founding families each day through our programs and service for young students and their educators.
What an eventful year 2004 was! In addition to the move into a brand new building, we published the watershed report, A Nation Deceived: How Schools Hold Back America’s Brightest Students, which Time magazine launched with a major story about academic acceleration as the most effective but least used academic intervention.
The momentum from 2004 resulted in the next several years being similarly active. However, one of those years, 2005, was also a year of significant loss. Myron Blank passed away in early 2005. He and Jacqueline left an indelible imprint on gifted education through their generosity and vision.
A few months later, Julian Stanley, founder of the Talent Search Model, passed away. At the 2018 Wallace Research Symposium, we honored Professor Stanley’s legacy. You can learn more about Dr. Stanley’s seven-decade career and the impact on the center and around the world by watching the video created for the occasion.
The Phase IV years, 2003-2008, flew by with special events for students and teachers.
By 2008, we were well on our way to Phases V and VI.