The beauty of Butler University’s campus has been recognized by two organizations, and a third—the NCAA—will be helping to beautify it even more by donating three trees that were planted near Schwitzer Hall on March 31 to commemorate the beginning of Earth Month.

For the third consecutive year, Butler has earned Tree Campus USA recognition. The national program, launched in 2008 by the Arbor Day Foundation and Toyota, honors colleges and universities and their leaders for promoting healthy trees and engaging students and staff in the spirit of conservation.
Sophomore Marisa Heiling and James Conner, Grounds Supervisor, planted trees outside Schwitzer Hall on March 31 to kick off Earth Month.

To obtain this distinction, Butler University met the five core standards for effective campus forest management: a tree advisory committee; a campus tree-care plan; dedicated annual expenditures for its campus tree program; an Arbor Day observance; and student service-learning project.

Butler’s 295-acre campus is home to over 100 different species of trees.

“Our campus is a green oasis,” said Rebecca Dolan, Director of the Friesner Herbarium. “These trees provide ecological services that everyone in the community benefits from, including cleaning the air, cooling adjacent buildings in summer, and decreasing storm water runoff. Many members of Butler University’s grounds staff have worked here over 20 years. They know each tree and provide excellent care. Tree Campus USA recognition acknowledges this commitment.”

Butler also is being recognized by the Indiana Wildlife Federation (IWF) as a sustainably landscaped campus. The recognition will be officially announced at an Earth Day celebration on April 22. More about the Butler certification is here.

The IWF noted that schools “do not need to sacrifice aesthetics for sustainability when designing and maintaining campus grounds. Environmental stewardship can reduce campuses’ impacts on Indiana’s ecosystems while enhancing their visual appeal and reducing maintenance costs.”

Butler Sustainability Coordinator McKenzie Beverage said the IWF certification “is a wonderful way to shine a light on the great things our facilities staff is currently doing to conserve resources and improve natural habitats on campus, while also providing a focus and context to think about what we could be doing better.”

Beverage also said the University will be adding three trees—two red maples and a white oak—to the campus landscape. The trees were planted March 31—the two maples between the sidewalk and the street along Hampton Drive, the oak near the walkway to the main entrance of Schwitzer.

The NCAA and Keep Indianapolis Beautiful partnered to plant 26 trees at seven higher education and neighborhood community facilities in the greater Indianapolis area to commemorate the seventh time that Indianapolis has hosted the men’s Final Four.


Media contact:
Marc Allan