Our Views: Trees big on campus

Visit many of Louisiana’s college campuses, and you quickly realize that much of the charm of these institutions often comes from their canopies of trees. We’re glad that these physical assets are getting some national recognition with the official designation of several state universities as Tree Campus USA institutions by the Arbor Day Foundation.

The nonprofit foundation recently designated LSU’s Baton Rouge and Alexandria campuses for the honor, which recognizes efforts on those campuses to promote and preserve trees at those universities. The University of Louisiana at Lafayette was also honored as a Tree Campus USA institution – the fourth consecutive year it has been given the award.

Among the requirements for the designation are having a campus tree-care plan, dedicating annual expenditures to trees and performing student service-learning projects.

Much remains to be done in growing and preserving the tree canopy at Louisiana’s institutions of higher learning. LSU’s Baton Rouge campus, for example, has been chronically short of funds to adequately maintain its iconic oaks.

We’re glad, though, that students seem to be getting actively involved in efforts to preserve campus trees. In doing so, these students are helping to advance a legacy that could long outlast their time at their alma mater.