TCU hosts first ever Arbor Day

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TCU hosted its first Arbor Day event on Friday at the newly completed intramural fields near Worth Hills.

The event consisted of a short presentation on “mulching,” or placing mulch around a tree, and the opportunity for students to go around and mulch trees themselves.

The event is part of Tree Campus USA, a program that helps colleges and universities around the country establish and sustain healthy community forests, according to its website. This encourages the sustainable growth and preservation of trees by fostering productive dialogue.

Justin Jung, a junior sociology major and student member of Tree Campus USA, said TCU joining the movement is “another step towards achieving its goal in sustainability.”

“Until the concept of the importance of tree planting, conservation and sustainability of the environment becomes part of our colloquial dialogue and in the conscious of the goodwill of the people, TCU Tree Campus USA will try hard to bring the community together,” Jung said.

Numerous TCU trucks parked along the intramural fields were filled with dozens of bags of mulch prepared for students to mulch about 30 trees around the perimeter of the area.

“The reason we mulch the trees is not only because it’s aesthetically pleasing, but it cuts down on water loss, it protects the trees and it keeps the weeds down, which all aid in the trees’ growth,” Assistant Director of Landscaping & Grounds Robert Sulak said.

The president of the Arbor Day Foundation reached out to Chancellor Boschini in hopes of getting TCU involved with the program.

Richard Bryan, TCU Physical Plant director of operations, has been coordinating the establishment of the committee that has overseen the TCU Tree Campus USA effort.

“Our first job was to determine what was required to be a part of the program,” Bryan said. “There are five standards that have to be met and one of those is recognizing Arbor Day and having a student involvement learning program.”

The additional requirements are deterring the annual expenditures for the Campus Tree care program, establishing a Campus Tree advisory committee and creating a Campus Tree care plan.

Bryan says, in the near future, TCU will apply for the designation of Tree Campus USA.
“If we meet all of the requirements, which I believe we will, then sometime in February or March we’ll get a certificate that says TCU will be recognized as a Tree Campus USA,” Bryan said.