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Steps to Commencement

Congratulations Class of 2024

Rutgers University–New Brunswick and Rutgers Health Commencement will be held Sunday, May 12, 2024 at SHI Stadium.

Ceremony starts at 10 a.m. 

Review the Day of Instructions for Graduates for detailed information.

Accordion Content

  • Stay in communication with your school. 

    • Rutgers University­–New Brunswick Students: Log in to Degree Navigator, or other degree auditing tools, to ensure you are on track to complete your degree. If you notice any discrepancies, please contact your academic adviser immediately.
    • Rutgers Health Schools Students: Contact your dean’s office directly for graduation requirements.

    Complete the Online Diploma Application and confirm your graduation date. 

    • Rutgers–New Brunswick Students: You must complete an Online Diploma Application with the Office of the Registrar. Confirm the name you would like displayed on your diploma and the correct permanent mailing address is on file so that you receive your diploma after graduation. Diploma's are mailed from the Office of the Registrar two to three months after Commencement.
    • Confirm that you are classified to complete your degree during the correct month and year.

    Mid-year degree recipients can attend the RU–NB & Rutgers Health Commencement ceremony in May.

    Most students who expect to receive degrees in October 2023, January 2024, May 2024, or August 2024 are eligible to participate in the May 2024 school-based convocations and Commencement events. This may vary by school. Contact your school directly with questions.

  • All financial obligations to the university must be cleared before you can receive your diploma.

  • All students who plan to participate on the field at the stadium during the 258th Anniversary Commencement and in school-based Convocation ceremonies must wear academic regalia, consisting of cap, gown, and hood. Academic regalia is provided through Barnes & Noble at Rutgers. Order Regalia here.

    Honor society cords are distributed through the Dean's office of the school from which you are graduating. Information will be sent to students who are eligible for honor cords. Other recognition cords and stoles are available through specific departments or groups. 

    Please note: Academic regalia will NOT be sold at the stadium. Please plan ahead. 

  • Commencement parking hangtags are required for all New Brunswick and Piscataway campus lots on the day of Commencement. Permits issued by Rutgers DoT are not valid on Commencement Day. 

  • No tickets are needed for Commencement! Everyone can come!

  • You've worked hard and it’s time to celebrate your accomplishment! 

    Film Your Shout Out! Say Thank You: Record a shout-out to the people that have supported you throughout your college career—it will appear on the stadium video board at Commencement! 

    • 04/04 Shout Out at Career Exploration & Success. 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
    • 04/17 Shout Out at Hot Dog Day, Graduate Student Lounge. 2-5 p.m.
    • 04/27 Shout Out at Rutgers Day, Scott Hall (Voorhees Mall.) 

    Mother's Day Notes (Submissions are no longer accepted)
    Shout out your mom or mother figure in their life by making a Mother's Day Note that will be shown on the big video board on Sunday, May 12. 

    What is a Mother's Day Note? 
    It's starts with a photo of you, the graduate! Submit of photo of yourself, waist or shoulders up, shot vertically, ideally in cap and gown and a special Mother’s Day Note, a maximum of 40 words. 

    Senior Portraits: Lors Photography is offering Senior Portrait Sessions at the College Avenue Student Center. Seniors were sent an email from Lors with details and links to book portrait sessions. If you did not receive an email, please email or call 908-964-3040. *Please note: Graduates receive a free sitting only.

    Share Your Next Steps: Complete the survey from the Career Exploration and Success office about your post-graduation plans for your chance to be entered into a raffle to win your choice of Apple Air Pods or a $100 Amazon gift card!

    • Learn more about SHI Stadium, where Commencement will be held
    • Visit the Accessibility page where graduates and guests with disabilities or those requiring other accommodations for Commencement will find information on special-needs parking, seating, alternative viewing options and more
    • Post your Commencement photos on social media with AR stickers from our Show Your Scarlet Pride page and use our official hashtag #RU2024

Day of Instructions for Graduates

Day of – Apparel, Parking, and More.

  • Dress for the weather. Choose clothing with pockets (to place your belongings), wear comfortable shoes / low heels (there is a lot of walking required), use sunscreen (avoid sunburn), and bring sunglasses if needed.
  • Place your parking hangtags in your vehicle and remind your guests to do the same.
  • No outside food is allowed at the Stadium, some concessions will be open. Water will be provided in the assembly area.
  • The SHI Stadium Bag Policy will be strictly enforced.
Students at Commencement 2023

Day of – Timing

7 a.m.:

  • Shuttle buses start running.

8 a.m.:

  • Stadium gates open. Allow at extra time to park and get to SHI Stadium.

9 a.m.:  

  • All graduates should plan to be inside the stadium. Upon arrival, leave your guests to find seats and then head to the south end, to the assembly area. Volunteers in red T-shirts can provide direction.
  • Have your photo taken as you ring the Red Lion Bell to signify departure from Rutgers and visit with the Cannon Crew!
  • Take the stairs from the south concourse down to the assembly area. An elevator is available for mobility-challenged students.
  • When you arrive in the assembly area, bottles of water and restrooms are available.
  • You will be directed to stand with your school (if graduating from more than one school, choose your preference.) In your school corral, receive your school's spirit maker.
  • As you wait, enjoy the shout out videos!

10 a.m.:

  • Ceremony begins with processional.
  • Graduates should walk in an orderly, single file line to follow their school to the assigned seating area. Commencement Marshals will direct you to your seat on the field, grouped by academic units. If you want to sit with friends, ensure they are in front or behind you during the procession.
  • Smile, you're on camera!
  • Be seated until asked to rise for The National Anthem. For safety, do not stand on seats or block aisles.
  • During the ceremony, after the student speaker's address, chancellors will read out schools names and degrees offered. Graduates, here is your chance to show your school pride! Stand and waive spirit maker as your school is called and remain standing throughout degree conferral.
  • When the president confers degrees, it's time to move your tassel! The cannon will fire to signal this special moment at Rutgers.

12:00 p.m.:

  • Ceremony concludes.
  • Depart to the nearest set of stairs to meet your family outside the stadium.
  • Congratulations Rutgers Grad! You made it! 
Students at Commencement 2023

Rutgers Commencement Traditions

Commencement Parking Information

Curbside drop-off is strictly prohibited at SHI Stadium. Please plan accordingly. 

Commencement hangtags are not needed for academic convocations and receptions held on other days.

cars next to a parking sign

Commencement vs. Convocation | What's the Difference?

Commencement VS Convocation

Commencement vs Convocation | What's the difference?