Winners Include Virginia Tech, the University of Rochester, the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, the University of Nevada–Las Vegas and American University
Lincoln, Neb. (April 5, 2012) – More than 50,000 online voters selected five Tree Campus USA schools as winners in a contest for $1,000 from the Arbor Day Foundation to plant trees and recruit new volunteers for campus sustainability.
The winning campuses, in order of most votes, were Virginia Tech, the University of Rochester, the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, the University of Nevada–Las Vegas and American University.
The votes were cast on arbordaynow.org, an online resource to promote volunteer opportunities and engage people in tree planting and conservation
A total of 53,747 votes were cast in the contest, which ran from March 22 to April 4. More information on the winners and their events can be found at arbordaynow.org/contest.
Though all five top finishers will receive the prize, the competition for first place was especially coveted by Virginia Tech and the University of Rochester, with Virginia Tech finishing ahead by just 488 votes.
"Students throughout the country are passionate about sustainability and community improvement," said John Rosenow, founder and chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation. "We're delighted to recognize and reward these five campuses for their leadership and commitment to building the next generation of conservation leaders."
The Volunteer Center at arbordaynow.org is being promoted by the Arbor Day Foundation as part of an innovative partnership with Toyota and VolunteerMatch.org to connect potential volunteers with activities in their own community. The Volunteer Center offers Americans in all 50 states a quick and easy way to find tree planting and conservation-focused volunteer opportunities where they live, just in time for Arbor Day and Earth Day later this month.
Tree Campus USA, a national program launched in 2008 by the Arbor Day Foundation, honors colleges and universities and their leaders for promoting healthy trees and engaging students and staff in the spirit of environmental stewardship. Tree Campus USA is supported by a generous grant from Toyota.
During 2011, the Arbor Day Foundation and Toyota helped campuses throughout the country plant 30,000 trees, and Tree Campus USA colleges and universities have invested more than $22 million in campus forest management. More information about the Tree Campus USA program and a complete list of 2011 campuses is available at arborday.org/TreeCampusUSA.
About the Arbor Day Foundation: The Arbor Day Foundation is a nonprofit conservation and education organization of one million members, with the mission to inspire people to plant, nurture and celebrate trees. More information can be found on the Arbor Day Foundation Blog, or by visiting us on Facebook or Twitter.
About Toyota: Toyota (NYSE: TM) established operations in the United States in 1957 and currently operates 10 manufacturing plants. Toyota directly employs nearly 30,000 in the U.S. and its investment here is currently valued at more than $18 billion, including sales and manufacturing operations, research and development, financial services and design. Toyota is committed to being a good corporate citizen in the communities where it does business and believes in supporting programs with long-term sustainable results. Toyota supports numerous organizations across the country, focusing on education, the environment and safety. Since 1991, Toyota has contributed over half a billion dollars to philanthropic programs in the U.S. For more information on Toyota's commitment to improving communities nationwide, visit toyota.com/philanthropy.