Shooting for $1 million

Lowell Whiteman students seek to establish endowment

Danie Harrelson

— On the 45th anniversary of its foundation, the Lowell Whiteman School will make a commitment to preserving its tradition for another 45 years and more.

The private high school will publicly launch its campaign to establish a $1 million endowment fund Feb. 2 at Perry-Mansfield’s Steinberg Pavilion.

An endowment ensures the independent high school can continue to offer its students a quality education and provide increasing support for each generation of students, said Whiteman Head Walt Daub.

“The wonderful thing about an endowment is that it will be around forever,” he said.

An endowment allows the school to invest the money in stocks and bonds and use only a percentage of its earnings.

The school commits to spending less than what the endowment earns, Daub said, thereby perpetuating its growth.

The endowment currently stands at 35 percent of the $1 million goal, thanks to $275,000 pledged by the school’s trustees and several parents since last year.

Daub said the school plans to fully fund the endowment by 2003 by targeting its extended family, which includes parents, alumni, parents of alumni, grandparents and friends.

The 6 p.m. kickoff dinner will highlight several donors, with the help of some Olympic fanfare.

The Olympic theme format will feature a traditional Olympic podium and medals ceremony, in which donors receive gold, silver and bronze medals based on their contributions.

The school intends to fund four initiatives with the endowment, in addition to an unrestricted category for the general operation of the school.

The four areas touch on financial aid, faculty support, technology and library resources and intercultural and international study.

The school doled out $235,000 in financial aid last year, or about 12 percent of its total operating budget.

Development Director Ralph Phillips said the school wants to offer more financial aid to deserving families and students, depending on assessments of their merit and need.

About 30 to 45 percent of the overall goal would go toward financial aid.

A second initiative would use 20 to 30 percent of the overall goal to increase teacher salaries and fund faculty development.

About 15 to 20 percent of the overall goal would fund a third initiative to provide students with new computers and new library online and print resources.

A fourth initiative aims to put 10 to 15 percent of the overall goal toward stipends for foreign travel.

The school’s trustees intended to build an endowment a long time ago, Phillips said, but pressing needs always delayed those intentions.

Phillips and Daub agreed the goal can be met and built upon in the future.

“It is part of our culture to give back, and those closest to our school know what a good investment it is,” Phillips said. “We hope that that’s just the beginning.”

Those interested in attending the kickoff dinner should call the Lowell Whiteman School at

879-1350 to make a reservation.

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