Penn Recognized by Tree Campus USA for Third Consecutive Year

May 16, 2012

The University of Pennsylvania has earned its third consecutive Tree Campus USA designation from the Arbor Day Foundation. Tree Campus USA is a national program the foundation launched in 2008, sponsored by Toyota Motor North America Inc., to honor colleges and universities for promoting healthy trees and engaging students and staff in the spirit of conservation.

Penn was recognized for several campus tree initiatives, including:

Creating Canopy: A tree giveaway program for Penn faculty and staff homeowners that was established in the spring of 2011 in partnership with the Philadelphia Parks and Recreation Department.

Upgraded and revised tree inventory: Penn plans to install radio frequency Identification chips into every tree on campus so an inventory can be updated with a quick scan.

Comprehensive tree map: All collected tree information will be used to develop campus tree maps, including fall and spring color displays, tree age, true canopy widths and native and non-native tree canopy.

Sustainable Sites initiative: Penn’s Shoemaker Green project is a pilot for a program for landscaping certification similar to the LEED accreditation system for buildings. This allows Penn to ensure that all future projects with a landscape component comply with SITES goals.

Penn Class Tree Program: The University is striving to create projects and opportunities for collaboration between as many relevant campus groups as possible, including the Penn Environmental Group, the Student Sustainability Association at Penn and Eco-Reps, as well as local groups like UC Green and the Morris Arboretum. 

Outreach and Communication: Publicity of Penn’s Tree Care Plan showcases established guidelines in campus development planning and sustainability efforts to the University community so that all members can be informed stewards of campus trees. A Tree Care Plan will be produced and disseminated through print and online publication sources of the staff and students.


There are approximately 7,000 trees on Penn’s campus—568 of which are in Penn Park.

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