The University of Iowa

Tree Campus Higher Education (formerly Tree Campus USA)


Tree Campus Higher Education (formerly Tree Campus USA) is a national program of the Arbor Day Foundation that honors colleges and universities for promoting healthy management of their campus forests and for engaging the community in environmental stewardship. In 2020, the Arbor Day Foundation changed the name of the program from Tree Campus USA to Tree Campus Higher Education to unify the larger family of tree campus recognition programs, which now includes Tree Campus K-12 and Tree Campus Healthcare.

The University of Iowa was designated the state of Iowa's first Tree Campus Higher Education institution in 2009 for its excellence in tree stewardship, as well as student and community involvement in its efforts. The campus has achieved this status each year since.

The Tree Team maintains approximately 8,000 trees on the main campus and the UI Research Park, and typically plants more than 300 trees each year.


The Tree Team launched a Tree Inventory App to catalog trees across campus. Check it out here:    Tree Inventory App

UI Receives Tree Campus Higher Education Designation

The Landscape Services Tree Crew was recently honored with a 2021 Tree Campus Higher Education Award. The UI was the first college in Iowa to win the award in 2009 and is one of only five Tree Campus Higher Education award winners in Iowa. This is the 13th year in a row that the UI Tree Crew has received this honor.

To earn the award, a campus must at a minimum have a campus tree advisory committee, a tree care plan, a tree program with dedicated annual expenditures, an annual Arbor Day observance, and a service learning project to engage the student body.

"Trees not only play a vital role in the environment but also in our daily lives,” said Dan Lambe, chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation. “Having trees on college and university campuses is a great way to show a commitment to students and faculty’s overall wellbeing."

The Facilities Management Tree Crew contributors include:

  • Mike Rhinehart, Supervisor, Landscape Construction, ISA-certified arborist and 2016 Outstanding Professional, Iowa Urban Tree Council
  • Andy Dahl, Urban Forestry Supervisor and Campus Arborist, ISA-certified Arborist/Municipal Specialist and 2014 ISA National “True Professional of Arboriculture” Award Winner
  • Alan Allgood, UI Tree Trimmer and ISA-certified Arborist
  • Micah Berg, Tree Trimmer
  • Grant Raitt, Groundskeeper I

Tree Campus Higher Education Photo Gallery