West Virginia State University Designated a Tree Campus USA® by National Arbor Day Foundation

Contact: Jack Bailey
(304) 766-4109
Feb. 11, 2020
West Virginia State University Designated a Tree Campus USA® by National Arbor Day Foundation
University plans to establish on-campus arboretum and smartphone app in 2020
            INSTITUTE, West Virginia – West Virginia State University (WVSU) has received its sixth consecutive designation as a Tree Campus USA® from the National Arbor Day Foundation for its commitment to effective urban forest management in 2019. The University plans to build upon the designation by launching a campus arboretum later this year.

“We are proud of our beautiful campus and our designation as a Tree Campus USA,” said WVSU President Anthony L. Jenkins. “This acknowledgement is a reflection of the importance we place on conservation and sustainability, and I applaud our Extension Service and academic leaders who are working hard to establish a campus arboretum in the coming months.”

As part of its ongoing tree care efforts, the University is working to establish an on-campus arboretum in 2020.

“An arboretum is like a living museum where different species of trees are grown for educational, research and ornamental purposes,” said WVSU Urban Forestry Extension Agent Elizabeth Moss. “Educational purposes include informing students and the public on the many benefits of community trees, identifying species on campus and providing fun facts related to history and biology.”

The goal, Moss said, is to create an outdoor learning environment that can be visited and utilized by both students and the public. Currently in the planning stages, the University hopes to launch a “Tree Tour” smartphone app by fall 2020, to include information about species identification, the challenges that community trees face and the benefits that they provide, and historical details about the WVSU campus.

The University is working with the West Virginia Division of Forestry’s Community and Urban Forestry program to develop the arboretum project. 

The Tree Campus USA® program honors colleges and universities for effective campus forest management and for engaging staff and students in conservation goals. WVSU 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 a student service-learning project. 
WVSU became the first institution in the state to receive Tree Campus USA® designation for its tree care efforts in 2014. 

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West Virginia State University is a public, land grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multigenerational institution, located in Institute, W.Va. As a “living laboratory of human relations,” the university is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet the higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.
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