Monday, April 22, 2019

Honors Students Plant Tree to Recognize Professors

Just in time for Earth Day 2019, Honors students planted a Cherokee Brave Dogwood tree last week to commemorate the Spring Honors Leadership Development class. The course is taught by professors Julie Morgan and Nancy Blomgren, to whom our Dogwood is dedicated.
“We are doing this because we were asked to try and find a way to leave a mark on campus,” said Honors student Giulia Giordani. “We just wanted to find a way to honor [our instructors Morgan and Blomgren]. We thought, ‘What better way than planting a tree that will just grow with time?’”

Planting a tree on campus isn’t as easy as digging a hole and putting a plant in the ground: There are many puzzle pieces behind the scenes that must come together, including permission forms and consistent communication with Plant Operations management. One stipulation of the class project was that we couldn’t spend a dime of our own; all materials needed to be donated.

An anonymous family friend of mine donated the tree to our group, which came from Scottsville, Kentucky. First Place Trophy in Hendersonville donated the plaque commemorating our professors. 

“I’ve enjoyed every bit of it, every step of the way,” said Honors student, Tony Chioccio. “From meeting Will and planning this out, to actually getting it in the ground, and showing our professors and removing the ribbon and clapping and crying and having a great time. It’s been great, it’s been wonderful.”

“Planting a tree is an act of hope and an investment in the future,” said Dr. Jerry Faulkner. “Most of us will not have the opportunity to harvest the fruit or sit in the shade of a tree we plant today.” Citing Alexander Smith, Dr. Faulkner reflected: “A man does not plant a tree for himself; he plants it for posterity.”
The tree is located in a high traffic area, across from the overflow parking lot, which faces Loop Road. The location will hopefully keep animals away, adding to the tree’s lifespan. Dogwoods are known to be hardy, tough trees by nature, so we’re keeping our fingers crossed for a long life for our “Blomgan Tree,” as our group has coined it. -By Rachel Keyes

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