8 Great Benefits of Becoming a Tree Campus USA – Straight from the mouths of other campuses

Earning Tree Campus USA certification provides multiple benefits, both to the school that receives it and the community that supports it. But don’t take our word for it. Below are insights from students, faculty and employees whose campuses are currently part of the program.

1 | Penn State University – Behrend

“Penn State Behrend is a beautiful wooded campus, and I am very proud of the Tree Campus USA designation. Over the past three years, we have added approximately 150 trees to our campus and 100 more in Harborcreek Township, and this designation will allow us to apply for grant funds to plant even more trees.” – Ann Quinn, Director of Greener Behrend, an outreach effort of the college’s School of Science

2 | SUNY – Cortland

“For the campus, it shows a commitment to creating an urban forest that is healthy, and it recognizes the urban forest as being important for human health, energy conservation, pollution mitigation and water conservation too.” – Steven Broyles, Professor of Biological Sciences

One of Prof. Broyles’ students, Elizabeth Fabozzi, also stated, “Being recognized as a tree campus is a huge honor in the tree conserving and preserving community. It demonstrates how the College cares about all of its biotic components, especially the trees.”

3 | Vasser University

“Applying for Tree Campus USA designation through the Arbor Day Foundation was a great way to give legitimacy to our sustainable landscaping efforts and support the historic legacy of our trees.” – Alistair Hall, Assistant for Sustainability Activities

4 | Appalachian State University

“This certification demonstrates Appalachian’s commitment to environmental aspects of sustainability.” – Mike Madritich, Associate Professor of Biology and member of the university’s certification team

5 | Stetson University

“The landscape is much more than a welcome mat for Stetson. It also provides places suitable for informal gatherings, outdoor class sessions, play and quiet reflection. Additionally, because the campus landscape is the only part of the university that some local citizens and visitors see, it should be one that reflects the mission and values we promote.” – Cynthia Bennington, Ph.D., Professor of Biology

6 | Georgia Tech University

“The Tree Campus USA certification highlights all the things we are doing that otherwise people would not know about. A beautiful tree canopy helps in recruiting students and faculty. Once they see the peaceful environment, they want to come in and know more about what we have [on campus].” – Hyacinth Ide, Associate Director of Landscape Services

7 | Clayton State University

“You don’t have to spend more than five seconds on this campus to know that trees are who we are. Trees define us. We want to make sure this campus is not just beautiful today, but beautiful forever.” – Dr. Thomas Hynes, Clayton State President

8 | California State University – Channel Islands

“This recognition reflects the commitment of CI’s entire campus community, which cares about making our environment stunning and sustainable. Not only do our outdoor spaces make CI a desirable place to live, learn, work and play, but they also provide a valuable opportunity for learning about conserving and replenishing the resources we use.” – Dave Chakraborty, Associate Vice President for Operations, Planning & Construction

Learn more about the Tree Campus USA program here or check out the full list of certified schools. Did your school make the list?

New How-To Guide for Sustainable Landscapes on College Campuses

When the topic of sustainability comes up on college and university campuses, the conversation often shifts to the indoors, such as, recycling or energy
Tree Campus USA conservation.  However, the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) took another big step in acknowledging the importance of the outdoors in a campus sustainability plan by releasing the How-To Guide, “Promoting Sustainable Campus Landscapes.”

The publication, created in partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation, is intended for a diverse audience including students, grounds and landscape staff, campus landscape architects, campus facilities management, sustainability officers, and campus environmental or sustainability committees. This audience includes both non-technical and technical individuals – anyone on campus interested in developing and delivering landscape programs to the public and who might stand to benefit from guidance on communications, events, and engaging others.

“I can unequivocally say that this guide is a ‘must have’ instructional tool that will be beneficial for any person, group or organization that values the role of trees and natural systems and views them as integral elements for sustainable campus landscapes,” shared Joe Jackson, past president for the Professional Grounds Management Society.

We are excited to note that Arbor Day Foundation Tree Campus USA program manager, Mary Sweeney, played a vital role in the creation of this guide.

Download your copy of the guide today.

Celebrating Global Tiger Day: July 29

Today – July 29 – is Global Tiger Day, a day for appreciating and celebrating all species of tigers worldwide. Unfortunately, this also means realizing their great decline in numbers due to poaching, habitat loss, and conflicts.

Tigers recline in their natural habitat. Image via National Geographic; photo credit: Steve Winter.

Tigers recline in their natural habitat. Image via National Geographic; photo credit: Steve Winter.

Did you know…trees and tigers go hand-in-hand. A majority of tigers’ natural habitats are made up of forests. Tropical, evergreen, temperate and snow-covered hardwood forests, along with mangrove swamps, are all home to various species of tiger.

Celebrate these beautiful creatures on Global Tiger Day — and every day — by raising awareness and supporting the preservation of their habitats.

Five facts about tigers from our friends at the World Wildlife Fund:

Tiger Ranges

This map shows the shrinking global range of tigers. Map copyright World Wildlife Fund.

1. In the last century alone, tigers have lost 93% of their historic range.

2. Continued large-scale habitat destruction and decimation of prey populations are the major long-term threats to the continued existence of tigers in the wild.3. Tiger habitat decreased by 45% in the last 10 years.

4. All tigers need dense vegetation, the presence of large ungulate prey, and access to water to be able to survive.

5. Tigers are found in a wide range of habitats in Asia and the Russian Far East, in increasingly fragmented and isolated populations.

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Coe Roberts is an Electronic Communication Specialist at the Arbor Day Foundation.