Arbor Day Foundation Honors Northwestern University with 2019 Tree Campus USA® Recognition
Northwestern University was honored with 2019 Tree Campus USA® recognition by the Arbor Day Foundation for its commitment to effective urban forest management.
"Tree Campuses and their students set examples for not only their student bodies but the surrounding communities showcasing how trees create a healthier environment,” said Dan Lambe, president of the Arbor Day Foundation. “Because of Northwestern University’s participation air will be purer, water cleaner and your students and faculty will be surrounded by the shade and beauty the trees provide.”
The Tree Campus USA program honors colleges and universities for effective campus forest management and for engaging staff and students in conservation goals. Northwestern University achieved the title by meeting Tree Campus USA’s five standards, which include maintaining a tree advisory committee, a campus tree-care plan, dedicated annual expenditures for its campus tree program, an Arbor Day observance and student service-learning project. Currently there are 385 campuses across the United States with this recognition.
Each year, Northwestern observes Arbor Day with a service-learning event in partnership with Facilities Landscape shop and sustainNU. In 2019, 34 participants planted nine willow and oak trees during these sessions. These volunteer tree plantings engaged staff and students in hands-on tree stewardship. Facilities staff coordinated the plantings and educated students about the Chicago region’s urban forest and proper tree planting and care.
The Arbor Day Foundation recognized Northwestern University’s exemplary commitments to urban forestry and key accomplishments. Since first earning Tree Campus USA recognition in 2014, Northwestern completed a tree canopy assessment, appraisal, and inventory, which gives Facilities a firmer grasp of the tree canopy percentage and diversity. Northwestern University currently has a 40% tree canopy, slightly higher than Evanston's 38% canopy. In 2019, ground crews added 51 trees to our grounds and Northwestern has set new five-year canopy goals. Through the guidance of Northwestern’s Campus Tree Advisory Committee, Northwestern will continue improving its tree canopy, inventory, green spaces, and education and engagement efforts to advance urban forestry regionally and campus-wide.
The Arbor Day Foundation has helped campuses throughout the country plant thousands of trees, and Tree Campus USA colleges and universities invested more than $51 million in campus forest management last year. This work directly supports the Arbor Day Foundation’s Time for Trees initiative—an unprecedented effort to plant 100 million trees in forests and communities and inspire 5 million tree planters by 2022. Last year, Tree Campus USA schools collectively planted 34,515 trees and engaged 33,432 tree planters—helping work toward these critical goals.