Salford students plant over 200 trees to encourage biodiversity in the University

Categories: School of Arts, Media and Creative Technology

As an opportunity to enhance our local green spaces, Fashion Image Making and Styling (FIMS) students planted 210 trees in three hours last month.

The tree planting event took place on Friday 21 January on David Lewis Playing Fields, where the FIMS students planted the trees with hopes of watching them grow during the next two and a half years of their degree.

Claudia Divito, a FIMS student who took part, said: “It was such a fulfilling day to have planted ten trees personally, and being away from computer screens was a rewarding and peaceful opportunity.”

Planting the trees gave the students an opportunity to work together, to get to know each other and the campus, and feel like part of the community by contributing towards enhancing our local green spaces in a tangible way. It was also a chance for them to spend time in nature which has been shown to have numerous benefits for both physical and mental health.

It was organised for the students in a collaboration between academics on the FIMS course – Christine Ratcliff (course founder, pathway leader and practising photographer) and Dan Szor (lecturer and practising artist), the University’s Environmental Sustainability Team, and the City of Trees (Beth, Rosie, Shannon and Emily) – an Environmental Conservation Organisation working to restore and reinvigorate Greater Manchester’s landscape.

Final year student, Paulina Mytych, said: “We promoted the day as a form of green activism and the importance of how important it is to plant more trees. It was an incredible experience for us all! I was able to see and experience the joy of both staff and my fellow students who wanted to do something for the environment. 

“The City of Trees and the University of Salford Green Team took detailed steps in supporting the process, and I was extremely happy to participate in this initiative!”

In addition to giving the students a chance to socialise, the tree planting also contributed towards the University’s objectives around encouraging biodiversity and enhancing wildlife habitats, as well as extending the woodland area around David Lewis Playing Fields.

FIMS is an innovative, creative, and dynamic undergraduate course, with sustainability at its core. It aims to prepare students for their future careers as successful and responsible creators. FIMS staff and students have shown their dedication to sustainability through many projects in recent years.

As well as working closely with the Environmental Sustainability Team and showcasing their efforts within the University, they have also been recognised externally. In 2021, one of their projects was Highly Commended in the Next Generation Learning and Skills category at the prestigious Green Gown Awards.

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