Tree Plantings to Highlight Earth Week Events

The Office of Student Volunteerism is hosting a campuswide initiative to make UT Dallas greener and more sustainable.  Earth Week, which lasts from from April 16 to 22, will include the planting of 20 trees near the Visitor Center.

Turner Construction Company is donating the new trees with the help of the Texas Trees Foundation. Both will be present on Wednesday, April 18, at 10 a.m. to help UT Dallas students plant the Caddo maples. 

“This project is particularly exciting because it combines two of our main ideals: green practices and commitment to the community.”

Matt Papenfus,
senior vice president, Turner Construction Company

“This project is particularly exciting because it combines two of our main ideals: green practices and commitment to the community,” said Matt Papenfus, senior vice president, Turner Construction Company. “As the leader in green buildings, we are very happy to partner with UT Dallas in their efforts to provide a green, sustainable campus for students.”

Texas Trees Foundation calls planting more trees important because the state has lost more than 500 million trees to the heat and drought of 2011.  

“This project is about more than putting trees in the ground. Tree planting is an investment that will pay dividends in the improvement of the air, water and quality of life in our communities,” said Texas Trees Foundation President & CEO Janette Monear. “We’re proud to partner with Turner and UT Dallas to plant these trees for all of the UT Dallas community to enjoy.”

Monalisa Amidar, assistant director of the Office of Student Volunteerism, said the tree planting is just one way the University is doing its part.

“In collaboration with student groups and sustainability programs, we are offering ways to raise awareness and learn about how we can better care for our planet,” said Amidar. “Also, it’s going to be a fun week – we have a number of great events, so anyone can be involved.”

Founded in 1902, Turner specializes in general construction, construction management, design-build, green building and Building Information Modeling (BIM).

“The positive transformation of UT Dallas continues to generate great enthusiasm and energy as reflected in this partnership to expand our green infrastructure,” said Dr. Calvin D. Jamison, vice president for administration.

The University of Texas Sysem recognized Turner in 2010 for its employment of historically underutilized business in the firm’s work on the refurbished Founders Building. Turner also has underwritten a grandmaster invitational chess tournament held at UT Dallas for the last two springs.


Earth Week Events

Monday, April 16, 10-2 p.m.

Bring soda cans and bottles to the Coca-Cola Recycling Truck in front of the Activities Center.

Tuesday, April 17, 12-2 p.m.

UT Dallas Earth Fair will explore all the planet-friendly projects and exhibits of student groups and UT Dallas departments. Booths will be set up in the Student Union mall and Chess Plaza.

Wednesday, April 18, 10 a.m.

Partake in the tree-planting dedication, made possible by donor Turner Construction. The event will be held at the Visitors Center entrance to the Student Union mall.

Thursday, April 19

The UT Dallas Community Garden is celebrating Re-Build 2012 and kicking off the spring planting season with a picnic.  The garden has been moved to a new location on campus to accommodate the construction of Loop Road.  Students can find out more information about joining the student gardeners on the Student Volunteerism website.

Saturday and Sunday, April 21-22, 10 a.m-6 p.m.

Show your Comet pride by attending Earth Day Dallas in Fair Park. Support various UT Dallas departments over the weekend as they showcase all things sustainable.

Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].