Western Michigan University was one of 29 campuses to earn the designation of "Tree Campus USA" by the Arbor Day Foundation in 2008, the first year of this award. WMU has been re-certified every year since 2008. We are one of only two colleges in Michigan to receive this certification. The program is modeled on the foundation's popular Tree City USA program, which began in 1976.
"These schools have made a major commitment to protecting, caring for, and adding to their campus forest. The results of this commitment will have a lasting, positive impact, not only on campus but in the overall community." —John Rosenow, founder of the Arbor Day Foundation
Arbor Day is a nationally-celebrated observance that encourages tree planting and care. Founded by J. Sterling Morgon in 1872, it's celebrated on the last Friday in April. WMU Landscape Services has participated in Arbor Day celebrations since 2006. Activities include the planting and dedication of one or more trees on campus, poem readings and a history of Arbor Day. In 2013,our Arbor Day celebration included the planting of a bald cypress at the east end of Goldsworth Valley Pond. In 2015, WMU celebrated Arbor Day by planting an eastern white pine—Michigan's state tree. In addition, the University held a dedication for the new 17-foot icon near Sangren Hall. In 2016 two Oak Trees ( a Burr Oak and a Red Oak) were planted during Arbor Day. In a collaboration with Western Student Association and Students for a Sustainable Earth many varieties of trees were planted at Goldsworth Pond as part of a grant during the 2017 festivities. This year's Arbor Day Celebration is scheduled for April 27, 2018 - 10 am at Heritage Hall. Students, Faculty, Staff and the Community are invited to attend.
TREE CAMPUS USA CRITERIA
In order to be certified as a Tree Campus USA, a college must meet five criteria:
- Must have a Tree Advisory Committee.
- Must develop and implement a Campus Tree Care Plan.
- Must have a Campus Tree Care Program with dedicated annual tree expenditures.
- Must observe Arbor Day.
- Must have a tree-related service-learning project.