The University of Arizona

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Arizona's Greenspace Honored
Thursday, April 26, 2012
University Communications

For the third consecutive year, the UA has been selected as a "Tree Campus USA" school.

The Nebraska-based Arbor Day Foundation has named the University of Arizona a 2011 Tree Campus USA school in honor of the UA's "commitment to effective community forestry management."

The UA has garned the award for three straight years.

Tanya Quist, an assistant professor of practice in the School of Plant Sciences and director of the UA Campus Arboretum, will receive the award, which is sponsored by Toyota.

The Arbor Day Foundation said the UA achieved the designation by meeting its five core standards required for sustainable campus forestry: a tree advisory committee, a campus tree-care plan, dedicated annual expenditures for its campus tree program, an Arbor Day observance and the sponsorship of student service-learning projects.

"Students throughout the country are passionate about sustainability and community improvement, which makes the University of Arizona's emphasis on well-maintained and healthy trees so important," said John Rosenow, chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation.

"By achieving Tree Campus USA recognition for the third year in a row, Arizona will continue to set an example for other colleges and universities and give students a chance to give back to both their campus community and the community at-large," Rosenow said.

The UA, in fact, is the oldest continually managed green space in Arizona, and is one of more than 100 college and university campuses around the country with a Tree Campus USA designation. The Campus Arboretum, has cataloged and manages several thousand trees across the University grounds in central Tucson.

Some of them include the olives and other trees brought to campus more than a century ago by Robert Forbes, the first dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

Tree Campus USA, a national program launched in 2008 by the Arbor Day Foundation, honors colleges and universities and their leaders for promoting healthy trees and engaging students and staff in the spirit of conservation. Tree Campus USA is supported by a generous grant from Toyota.

"The award recognizes evidence of exceptional programs involving students and the community as well as high standards for landscape management and campus development," Quist said.

"Since, the Campus Arboretum must reapply each year, this certification provides an opportunity to measure our continuing progress toward more sustainable landscape management, greater community engagement and a healthier environment," Quist said.

"This certification recognizes the efforts of many campus units who support the Campus Arboretum in its landscape stewardship mission," she added.

Based in historic Herring Hall, the Campus Arboretum serves as a resource for the School of Natural Resources and the Environment, the School of Plant Sciences, the College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture and others.

During 2011, the Arbor Day Foundation and Toyota helped campuses throughout the country plant 30,000 trees, and Tree Campus USA colleges and universities have invested more than $22 million in campus forest management.

The Arbor Day Foundation is a nonprofit conservation and education organization of nearly one million members, with the mission to inspire people to plant, nurture, and celebrate trees.