Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Susan Koch: UIS landscape team keeps campus beautiful

The following is a portion of a column written by Chancellor Susan J. Koch. It was published in The State Journal-Register on June 8, 2014.

"I often ask students what the deciding factors were in their choice of the University of Illinois’s Springfield campus as the place where they would pursue their college degrees.

Though academic reputation, small class size and reasonable cost are often mentioned, students also tell me that they fell in love with the campus itself when they made their first visit. I guess that’s proof that you never get a second chance to make a first impression. In fact, research shows that a beautiful and functional campus is often a deciding factor in a prospective student’s college choice.

The University of Illinois Springfield campus consists of 750 acres, and it is, indeed, beautiful.

About half of the property is still Class A prime agricultural land—deep (and valuable) Ipava soil that rotates, like most active farmland in central Illinois, between crops of corn and soybeans.

A talented and dedicated crew of 12 landscape professionals and grounds workers maintains the other 350 or so acres of the campus. That includes 6.5 miles of streets and roads (13 of which are named after Illinois authors), 7 miles of sidewalks, over 400 different types of trees and shrubs, about 2,000 perennial and annual plants, a pond and acres of lawn and sports fields."

Read the full column online