Washtenaw Community College named a bee-friendly campus for third consecutive year

A bee searches for pollen on a flower during a sunny spring day in Belgrade, Serbia, Friday, April 8, 2022. A study published in the journal Nature on Wednesday, April 20, 2022 says habitat loss from big agriculture and climate change are combining to threaten the world's insects. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic) (Darko Vojinovic, Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

ANN ARBOR – Washtenaw Community College has been recognized as a Bee Campus USA affiliate for the third year in a row for educating the community and enhancing pollinator habitats.

In 2021, WCC led service-learning projects for nearly 250 people and enhanced or created nearly 29,000 square feet of pollinator habitats on its campus.

First recognized in 2019 by the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, WCC was the third Bee Campus USA to be named in Michigan and 88th in the nation.

Various pollinators visit the campus’ landscaped beds with thousands of annual flowers and perennials. Many buildings also feature bee-friendly rooftop gardens.

“WCC is fortunate to have a large natural area surrounding the campus, as well as a robust biology/environmental science curriculum,” biology faculty member and WCC Bee Campus USA Committee member Dave Wooten said in a statement. “Both work well together to make our Bee Campus initiatives effective and successful.”

Bees are critical pollinators of flowers, fruits, vegetables and other crops, one-third of which depend on bee pollination globally, according to Wooten.

As bee populations decline, WCC has also incorporated pollinator education into its curriculum, offering five credit courses in environmental science and biology and nine personal enrichment courses which cover the topic.

This fall, staff plan to plant a new perennial flower garden on campus to attract bees.

For more information, visit WCC’s Bee Campus website.

About the Author:

Meredith has worked for WDIV since August 2017 and was voted one of Washtenaw County's best journalists in 2019 by eCurrent's readers. She covers the community of Ann Arbor and has a Master's degree in International Broadcast Journalism from City University London, UK.