Student researchers map importance of campus trees
Using Geographic Information Systems software and in-person interviews with students, staff, faculty, and alumni, student researchers in the Bears in the Woods project locate an individual’s favorite tree on campus. Researchers then collect information on why this tree is a person’s favorite. In the process, the researchers seek to understand what it is about the tree or wooded area of campus that creates particular significance for that individual. The study is ongoing, with findings providing much needed data to better understand how trees and woodlands contribute to individual and community well-being on campus and with implications for beyond campus. The research project is part of Dr. Patrick Hurley’s People and Urban Forests Research Program.