Frostburg State University has been honored as a Tree Campus USA, a national program of the Arbor Day Foundation and Toyota Motor North America Inc., which honors colleges and universities and their leaders for promoting healthy trees and engaging students and staff in the spirit of conservation.
To obtain this distinction, FSU met five core standards for sustainable campus forestry required by Tree Campus USA, including establishing a tree advisory committee, evidence of a campus tree-care plan, dedicated annual expenditures for its campus tree program, an Arbor Day observance and the sponsorship of student service-learning projects.
“We are honored by the Tree Campus USA recognition,” said FSU President Jonathan Gibralter. “Providing hands-on learning opportunities for our campus community to support environmental stewardship by beautifying our campus with native trees is a huge part of how we’re working to make sustainability a part of our institutional culture. I know our students, faculty, staff and community members and partners will continue making great strides in supporting sustainability at Frostburg.”
FSU is the only campus in Maryland that has adopted a standard of planting native trees and shrubs, according to Dr. Sunshine Brosi, an assistant professor in the FSU Department of Biology and chair of the Campus Tree Advisory Committee.
Other members of the Campus Tree Advisory Committee include Greg Partsch from the Facilities Department, Safety and Sustainability Coordinator Lawrence Gingerich, Assistant Professor of Biology David Puthoff, Becky Wilson from the Maryland Department of Resources and community member Liz McDowell.
FSU students Laura G. Smith, an undergraduate ethnobotany major, and Mitch Hall, an ethnobotany graduate and student in the Applied Ecology and Conservation Biology master’s program, played a large part in achieving the recognition. Smith, of LaVale, worked on completing the application, and Hall, of Accident, assisted in developing the tree care plan. Both are also members of the Campus Tree Advisory Committee.
Dr. Joseph Hoffman, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Science, praised Brosi’s role in bringing this Tree Campus USA designation to FSU. “Dr. Brosi’s tireless and effective leadership was instrumental in FSU receiving this honor and distinction as a Tree Campus USA,” Hoffman said. “This award is still another example of FSU’s institutional dedication to improving our regional environment.”
Part of Brosi’s contribution to the regional environment beyond the FSU campus is her work with the city of Frostburg to develop a Shade Tree Commission, with the aim of a Tree City USA designation, and assisting Allegany College of Maryland in its efforts to be the second Western Maryland campus to be named a Tree Campus USA.
To learn more about FSU’s focus on sustainability, visit www.frostburg.edu/lglg or email
, or become a fan of the “Learning Green, Living Green at FSU (LGLG)” Facebook page at facebook.com/frostburglglg.
Situated in the mountains of Allegany County, Frostburg State University is one of the 12 institutions of the University System of Maryland. FSU is a comprehensive, residential regional university and serves as an educational and cultural center for Western Maryland. For more information, visit www.frostburg.edu or facebook.com/frostburgstateuniversity. Follow FSU on Twitter @frostburgstate.