Saplings Planted to Celebrate ‘Tree Campus USA’ Designation

Trees were planted on East Campus to mark the occasion

Duke students and staff gathered Wednesday morning to celebrate a sixth-straight designation of Duke as a "Tree Campus USA" location by the Arbor Day Foundation.

Tree Campus USA schools are selected for promoting healthy management of campus forests and engaging the community in environmental stewardship.

As part of the event, students from Duke's Alpha Phi Omega co-ed community service fraternity joined Facilities Management to plant 17 oak, elm, cherry and black gum trees. Above, sophomores Luxi Wan, left, Katie Lin and Monica Choe, right, add soil to a freshly dug hole as Gary Atkins, a tree pruner with Facilities, steadies the plant.

"Few things can bring people together like trees," said Katie Rose Levin, natural resource manager with Facilities Management. "Our grounds crews work behind the scenes so much, this is a good event to get them out and in front of the Duke community."

Below, Chris Hirni, ranger for Orange and Durham counties with the North Carolina Forest Service, prepares a black gum tree to be planted. Hirni was joined by Caleb Ferrell, the Forest Service’s assistant county ranger for Durham County, to help Duke celebrate the Tree Campus USA designation.