About Tree Campus Higher Education

No matter where you’re from, trees and green space are an integral part of the college experience. They make campuses more livable, healthy, and beautiful, benefiting students and the environment as a whole.

Tree Campus Higher Education was founded in 2008 to foster that tradition of excellence. The program provides a simple framework for colleges and universities to grow their community forests, achieve national recognition, and create a campus their students and staff are proud of.

Is your campus ready to apply?

Take the quiz to find out

In 2023


Recognized Campuses


Trees Planted


Students Engaged

Why should my school participate?

  • A commitment to trees can significantly reduce the amount of energy your campus, and community, needs to generate.
  • Planting and maintaining trees absorbs carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, mitigating the effects of climate change.
  • Green space provides important mental health benefits to students, faculty, and staff, as well as encourages physical activity.
  • Involving students in tree-related service-learning projects helps educate the next generation about the importance of caring for the environment.

Recognition also builds pride among your campus and the wider community. We make it easy for you to share your designation, sending flags, press releases, logos and graphics, and other materials after your acceptance.

Become a Tree Campus

Your college or university campus can receive annual Tree Campus Higher Education recognition by meeting five overarching standards. They include:

  1. Establishment of a campus tree advisory committee
  2. Evidence of a campus tree care plan
  3. Verification of the plan’s dedicated annual expenditures
  4. Observing Arbor Day
  5. Creating a service-learning project aimed at engaging the student body
Additional Standard Details

Start Your Application

Apply Now


Use the tools below to get buy-in from your campus leaders and collaborators.

Here are some additional resources that may be helpful on your journey to recognition.

Frequently Asked Questions Program Toolkit Sample Tree Care Plan Tree Celebration Toolkit Arbor Day Celebration Tips

Online Store

After being accepted, you can visit our online store to order promotional materials for your campus.

Hear from Participating Institutions

  • Being a Tree Campus Higher Education supports UIC's Climate Commitment-Biodiverse Campus by supporting and enhancing the biodiversity of tree species. It also shows the commitment the university has taken to ensure a robust campus tree population.

    Lisa Sanzenbacher, Assistant Director for Sustainability Programs, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • CU Boulder has met the Tree Campus Higher Education standards for over ten years now. Acquiring and maintaining this status has created many opportunities for our students, staff and faculty to engage with one another…in our efforts to improve, maintain and celebrate the urban forest on our campus.

    Vince Aquino, Facilities Management Arboriculture Supervisor, University of Colorado Boulder
  • [Tree Campus Higher Education] formalizes the tree work we do by shining a light on our innovative initiatives, skilled network of experts, and required resources put forth to accomplish our goals. It encourages us to reach and do better every year, expanding the breadth of tree management on campus and following best practices in the region and beyond.

    Chloe Cerwinka, Landscape Planner, University of Pennsylvania
  • Earning the Tree Campus Higher Education Recognition demonstrates to our students, faculty, staff, and peer institutions that Spelman College values its campus trees for improving our environment through contributing to CO2 reduction, creating shade for the campus community, shading buildings to reduce energy use in building cooling, and contributing to the beautiful aesthetic of the campus landscape.

    Michael Walsh, Grounds Supervisor, Spelman College
  • Earning Tree Campus Higher Education recognition means that all Villanovans can be proud of the work that the facilities and grounds team puts into planting and caring for the trees we have on this beautiful campus.

    Hugh Weldon, Horticultural Manager, Villanova University
  • Arizona State University's commitment to the Tree Campus Higher Education standards involves our students, faculty, staff and the community and gives everyone an opportunity to share ideas, educate and promote the benefits of our diverse collection of trees on our campus.

    Deborah Thirkhill, Program Coordinator, Arizona State University

2023 Recognized Campuses

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Thanks to Our Professional Partner
Bartlett Tree Experts

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