In spring 2018, the BIO 255: Conservation Biology class completed a strategic plan for the university to follow in pursuit of establishing itself as a Level III arboretum.
Jameson Chace, Helen Papp, Allyson Gilbert, Madeline Lark, Kyle McGuire, Krysta Tsangarides, Madisen Archibald, Meghan Beals, Mackenzie Begley, Meagan Clickner, Makayla B. Cormier, Erin H. Donovan, Paige Dostie, Luke A. Gagnon, Micaela Griffin, Dana Johnson, Kunsang C. Lama, Kyle A. Macleod, Shannon A. Miller, Megan Moschetti, Amanda Munoz, Jennifer O'Connell, Erin O'Neill, Emily A. Riley, Alejandro C. Rojas, Ryan T. Senecal, Delaney A. Smith, Nicholas J. Sousa, Karolyne N. Stimpson, Sabrina Vieira, and McKenzie R. Wood
The Salve Regina University Arboretum, located in Newport, Rhode Island is currently registered as a Level II arboretum and is intertwined with the city of Newport Arboretum. The university now has intentions to reach Level III status, as part of a ten-year plan. This plan was developed by the students of the Spring 2018 BIO 255: Conservation Biology course, instructed by Dr. Jameson Chace, Associate Professor of biology at Salve Regina University. As part of a curriculum geared towards civic engagement, the class focused on creating and optimizing strategies that can be applied to the ten-year plan. These strategies were applied to the plan categorically: a team to inventory the current tree collection; a team to develop formal educational programming; a team for informal educational programming; a team to establish goals for conservation initiative related to the arboretum; a team dedicated to research related to arboreta; and a team to develop a list of species of special interest to add to the arboretum in the coming years.
In the following document, each team’s strategies for the ten-year plan are outlined. Each of the components of this plan incorporate means to fulfill the conditions to meet Level III arboretum status so that the arboretum can apply for official registration. The aforementioned teams were tasked with designing a foundation on which to work up from. This includes formal educational programming to be applied to classroom settings and informal educational programming which can be applied to community outreach-based settings. The teams that worked to strengthen the arboretum’s mission of conservation focused on researching trees that can fit into the current landscape while providing some sort of benefit to the surrounding flora/fauna. Further, many of the species of interest, such as the chestnut, hold historical value to the greater Rhode Island region. In all, the Salve Regina Arboretum must achieve a total of 500 unique species of trees and woody plants as part of its efforts to apply for Level III status.
In addition to the programming and research performed so far by the student teams, the arboretum must also hire a curator to manage the programming and to oversee the arboretum as a whole. Additionally, the arboretum must continue to actively collaborate with other arboreta and should encourage scientific research. It is important to recognize that the Salve Regina University Arboretum has already been utilized in the field of microbiology and has gained some attention at the university as a resource for further research and investigation.
This ten year plan, along with resources within in it, is designed to provide a list of potential guidelines and ideas that can be applied for the arboretum’s benefit and growth. The Salve Regina University arboretum is a continually growing and developing part of the greater Newport, Rhode Island community, and will continue to strengthen its mission and that of the university which oversees its success.