Lander wins a second straight award for promoting healthy trees on its campus

April 15, 2014
Lander University has earned recognition as a Tree Campus USA 2013, the second consecutive year it has received the designation.

The Arbor Day Foundation and Toyota created the national program in 2008 to recognize colleges and universities that promote healthy trees on their campuses, and engage students and staff in conservation.

Program manager Mary Sweeney said, in 2013, Lander again met the five core standards, including having a tree advisory committee and a campus tree-care plan, sponsorship of student service-learning projects and an Arbor Day observance.

Sweeney added that Lander’s diligence in improving the campus environment and quality of life contributes to a healthier, more sustainable world.

Dr. DeWitt Stone, chair of Lander’s Aboretum Committee, said the designation fits right into the committee’s work. “Our goal is to add a greater variety of trees at Lander for educational purposes and to increase the beauty of the campus."

One requirement for the award is involving students in tree planting projects. Last year, members of Lander’s Tri-Beta biology honor society planted saplings on the banks of a stream near Centennial Hall to replace dead trees and other vegetation.

Dr. Austin Trousdale, assistant professor of biology and Tri-Beta’s adviser, said the new vegetation will not only improve the aesthetics of the area, but it was also help stabilize the stream bank and reduce standing water that could become a breeding pool for mosquitoes. He added, “The project is a testament to the cooperation between Lander students and the Arboretum Committee.”

To maintain its Tree Campus USA designation, Lander must submit yearly documentation showing that it is meeting the foundation’s standards for the award.