With one of the oldest forestry
programs in the nation, The University of Maine has been instrumental in
the stewardship of the state's woodlands. University research has
affected the health of forests in Maine and around the world. Foresters
and resource management experts have been trained, and partnerships have
developed with constituents ranging from woodlot owners to forest
In the last nine years, that stewardship has taken on a new dimension.
With the establishment of the Green Endowment of Forest Land, the
College of Natural Sciences, Forestry, and Agriculture benefits from
private donations of woodlands to the University of Maine Foundation,
which currently total more than 5,500 acres. Gifts of forestland to the
University of Maine Foundation ensure that the private tracts will be
managed on a sustained-yield basis using the best forestry practices.
Established in 1992, the Green Endowment offers alumni, industry and
friends the opportunity to give woodlots to the University. The
University of Maine Foundation takes title to the gifted woodland on
behalf of the college. The college manages the property and uses it for
research and educational purposes.
The Green Endowment has become yet another way the University
contributes to the management of the natural resources in Maine, which
is 89 percent forestlands and the most heavily forested state in the
"This is such a natural for The University of Maine," says Amos Orcutt,
president/CEO of the University of Maine Foundation, which manages the
endowment. "If landowners want land preserved, why not let the state's
largest university do it, managing the woodlands using the latest
techniques and allowing research to be done that could impact future
forests? It's logical for the state's land-grant institution to be a
repository for lands. It's good for the state."
For years, The University of Maine has been working to increase
productivity of forestlands, in the same way it has affected the potato,
dairy and other natural resource industries in the state, Orcutt says.
The benefit is in gaining a productive and ecologically sound forest,
and in sharing the latest research with other forest owners and managers
on issues ranging from timber harvest to conservation and woodlot
UMaine Today Magazine
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