Greening UToledo Through Service Learning (GUTS)

About GUTS

Greening UToledo through Service Learning (GUTS) is an on-campus student project funded by the Student Green Fund. Student employees and faculty advisors focus on three main areas: native plantings and garden projects, greenhouse cultivation and service learning opportunities. Through these projects, GUTS works to increase biodiversity and water filtration to the Ottawa River on campus by reducing turf grass plantings and replacing them with native plants.

Numerous projects have been completed on campus since GUTS’ inception in 2016. Completed projects include the Bowman Oddy South Courtyard and Wall plantings, as well as the Native Nursery which occupies the North Bowman Oddy Courtyard. We also installed the Center for Performing Arts rain garden, the Lot 3 Arena Bioswale, the Flatlands Watering Hole and the Carlson Library main prairie. GUTS is currently working on the Lot 10 Memorial Rain Garden and additional Carlson Library prairies, as well as supplemental native plantings located in the University Hall courtyards. GUTS also provides hands-on support and native plants to a variety of projects including the Academic House Prairie and the UToledo Outdoor Classroom Garden. With these current projects underway, plans to complete additional native plantings on campus are always in the works.

The third focus area of GUTS is creating and running service learning opportunities for students of all majors taking courses offered in the Department of Environmental Sciences. While partaking in a service learning event, students will experience real-life applications of what they have learned in class while gaining marketable skills and increased networking. The student volunteers work with seed harvesting, cleaning, outplanting and a variety of other greenhouse tasks. On a yearly basis, GUTS has over 200 student volunteer 800 hours of work!

Working on these focus areas and working to develop native plantings, Greening UToledo Through Service Learning is excited for future increases in sustainability and biodiversity on campus.


The mission of Greening UToledo Through Service Learning (GUTS) is to create native landscapes at The University of Toledo which increases sustainability, conservation and biodiversity through the work of students and undergraduate service learning volunteers.  

Our vision is to decrease the reliance on fossil fuels needed to maintain turf grasses, increase the water filtration heading into the Ottawa River and restore local habitat for native wildlife.

GUTS graphic created by Sarah Knauf, BGSU graphic design student.
Last Updated: 6/27/22