Arbor Day Foundation Honors Hollins with 2020 Tree Campus Higher Education® Recognition

Accolades and Awards, Sustainability

February 16, 2021

single-paper-background Tree Campus Higher Education

For its commitment to effective urban forest management, Hollins University has been honored with Tree Campus Higher Education® recognition for 2020 by the Arbor Day Foundation.

“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 Hollins’ participation, air will be purer, water cleaner, and students and faculty will be surrounded by the shade and beauty trees provide.”

The Tree Campus Higher Education program honors colleges and universities for effective campus forest management and for engaging staff and students in conservation goals. Hollins achieved the title by meeting Tree Campus Higher Education’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 a student service-learning project. Currently there are 403 campuses across the United States with this recognition.

“This is our fifth year receiving the Tree Campus Higher Education designation, which really speaks to Hollins’ commitment to responsibly managing and caring for trees while also engaging students in that work,” said Assistant Professor of Biology and Environmental Studies Elizabeth Gleim ’06. Over the past several years, students in Gleim’s Conservation Biology course have completed a full inventory of trees on campus and quantified the ecosystem services that provide, such as the amount of carbon these trees sequester.

“Through service projects, students have also planted over 100 trees on campus over the past several years in an effort to mitigate the impact of the invasive emerald ash borer, which is currently killing many of our ash trees on campus,” Gleim added.

This spring, Hollins will be celebrating both Arbor Day and Earth Day on Friday, April 23, as Gleim will conduct a Hollins Tree Tour for students, faculty, and staff. “I’ll share some cool facts about the services trees provide, some of their medicinal properties, and how to identify these trees.”

The Arbor Day Foundation is a million-member nonprofit conservation and education organization with the mission to inspire people to plant, nurture, and celebrate trees. It has helped campuses throughout the country plant thousands of trees, and Tree Campus Higher Education 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 five million tree planters by 2022. Last year, Tree Campus Higher Education schools collectively planted 39,178 trees and engaged 81,535 tree planters — helping the foundation work toward these critical goals.