When it comes to maintaining and enhancing an inventory of over 9,849 living trees on the 900-acre Blacksburg campus, being able to “see the forest through the trees” takes on a whole new meaning.
It’s Virginia Tech’s holistic approach to university forestry — rooted in planning, collaboration, education, and community engagement — that has helped the university earn Tree Campus Higher Education USA recognition for the 13th consecutive year.
Launched in 2008 by the Arbor Day Foundation, Tree Campus Higher Education USA is a national program that honors colleges and universities for effective campus forest management and for engaging students, employees, and visitors in conservation goals.
Virginia Tech achieved Tree Campus Higher Education USA recognition by meeting five national standards: maintaining a tree advisory committee, operating a campus tree-care plan, dedicating annual expenditures toward trees, organizing an Arbor Day observance, and delivering ongoing student learning and engagement opportunities.
Heading up Virginia Tech’s urban forestry efforts is University Arborist Jamie King, who joined the Division of Campus Planning, Infrastructure, and Facilities in 2019.
“Virginia Tech is proud to receive Tree Campus Higher Education USA recognition for the 13th year. Trees play an integral part in maintaining a sustainable campus landscape. They help support air purification, erosion control, and storm water management,” King said. “Not to mention the countless recreational, educational, and community-building opportunities they provide. Just like our storied buildings, cutting-edge research labs, and more, trees are significant university assets.”
Since 2008, more than a thousand trees have been planted on the Blacksburg campus.
Recent tree plantings in the Old-Growth Forest adjacent to Lane Stadium, commonly known as Stadium Woods, during Earth Week and along Alumni Mall are just two examples of the many reforestation efforts underway.