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Ginkgo tree will ensure Stephens remembers Class of 2015

April 22, 2015

Student Government Association and Susies Organized for Service (SOS) today planted a ginkgo biloba tree on campus in honor of this year’s graduating seniors.

“The organizations are big on environmental issues, so it seemed like a great way to recognize the senior class,” said Aja Depass, a member of SGA. “We’re hoping this starts a tradition that can continue in the future—kind of like a send off to seniors.”

A group of graduating seniors, along with members of SGA, SOS and the Stephens community, celebrated the planting with a lunch hour groundbreaking ceremony. Seniors each had the opportunity to shovel a bit of dirt over the trunk.

A plaque will mark the tree with a quote from senior class president Lesta NewBerry. It will read: “Believe in yourself and all of your dreams, and never forget all that you’ve learned at Stephens.”

Ginkgo biloba is one of the oldest species of trees on the planet, and its extract is known for therapeutic properties, including boosting memory. It will eventually grow to be some 40-50 feet high with branches extending 45 feet, said Greg Mankey, director of facilities.

The tree is located on the historic senior quad. That’s an area that tends to hold water after significant rainfall, so the root system will help keep the surrounding ground dry, he added.

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