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Class of 2009 gift symbolizes renewable, sustainable initiatives and education

Posted by Judy Korn on Wednesday, May. 13, 2009

When members of the Class of 2009 return to the University of Minnesota, Morris, they will enjoy the distinct pleasure of witnessing the growth of their Senior Legacy gift: evergreen trees.

Recently, 25 seniors, with the help of Plant Services, planted 30 trees near the entrance of Big Cat Stadium. In addition to enhancing the outdoor space and serving as a windbreak, the trees symbolize the growth the students experienced at Morris, the renewable, sustainable liberal arts degrees they earned, and their support of the campus’s green initiatives.

Shares Patrick Chester ’09, Cass Lake, Senior Legacy Committee president: “The idea of planting trees was brought to us by a member of our senior class, and then we voted on the idea. We wanted to leave a legacy that was representative of our entire class and time spent at Morris, and planting trees was in line with our campus’s sustainable culture.”

The Class of 2009 voted on their Senior Legacy gift at the Senior Banquet in December 2008 and raised funds for the project throughout the academic year. The tree planting project was announced this spring. Members of the Senior Legacy Committee were Chester, Tou Pha ’09, St. Paul, Nathan Giles ’09, St. Paul, Christina Osthus ’09, Eagan, Rebecca Hendrickson ’09, Hewitt, Kau Chee Vang ’09, St. Paul, and Shauna Rosen ’09, Plymouth.

Rosen participated in the planting event. She states: "The trees will be a permanent mark I added to the Morris campus. I look forward to returning to the school in the future to see how much they have grown."

The University of Minnesota, Morris Alumni Association sponsors the Senior Legacy Program.

Photo: Nate Giles '09, St. Paul