New Student Convocation is Rutgers University’s official welcome for first-year and transfer students, and is scheduled to take place at the Jersey Mike’s Arena on the Livingston Campus on Thursday, August 31, 2023. The program will include important messaging, performances from student organizations, and a formal University address. During the formal program, students will hear remarks from the University President Johnathan Holloway, Rutgers – NB Chancellor Francine Conway, and the Student Body President and become official Scarlet Knights. Immediately following formal Convocation, students will meet members of the Rutgers Athletic Team for a Spirit Rally including Head Football Coach Greg Schiano. Following Convocation, students will enjoy Scarlet Carnivale, an outdoor carnival-inspired event with boardwalk games, laser tag, prizes, dinner, and much more.

Convocation and Scarlet Carnivale are for first-year students and new transfer students ONLY. Both events are mandatory.



  • 4:30pm – 6:00pm: Student Arrival at Jersey Mike’s Arena
  • 6:00pm – 6:30pm: New Student Convocation
  • 6:30pm – 6:45pm: Rutgers University Spirit Rally
  • 6:45pm – 10:30pm: Scarlet Carnival and Dinner on Henry’s Field (located between Jersey Mike’s Arena and the Livingston Student Center). PLEASE NOTE: ALL FIRST YEAR AND TRANSFER STUDENTS ARE REQUIRED TO ATTEND

Before You Leave Your Hall or Home

  • Wear Red to Jersey Mike’s Arena to show your Rutgers Pride
  • Students are encouraged to bring a light jacket or sweatshirt since the event lasts until 10:30PM

Entering Jersey Mike’s Arena and Convocation

  • Students will sit with their residence hall or with their commuter reception group
  • Staff members in red Welcome Week t-shirts will provide seating assistance
  • Bottled water will be provided at the JMA; restrooms are located in the lobby area of Jersey Mike’s Arena
  • Following Convocation students will exit Jersey Mike’s Arena for Scarlet Carnivale

Eating Dinner at Carnivale

  • Dinner is provided for all first-year and transfer students who attend Convocation
  • Students with meal plans will have one meal swipe manually deducted from their plan
  • Students requiring a meal accommodation will be served from tables with a red table cloth

 Buses Back to Other Campuses Following Scarlet Carnivale

  • Students will get back on buses to return to their respective campuses
    • Busch and College Ave: Lot 101
    • Cook and Douglass: Front of the Livingston Student Center
    • Buses back to other campuses will begin running at 8:30PM and will run until 11:30PM



  • Formal Convocation will still occur at Jersey Mike’s Arena on the Livingston Campus
  • Students will be bussed back to their respective campuses immediately following Convocation. Buses will be located as follows:
    • Cook and Douglass: From Hospital Road
    • Busch and College Ave: From Green Lot
  • All Dining Halls will be open and students should eat on the campus where they live
  • Carnivale will be relocated to the Busch Student Center, Cook Student Center, Livingston Student Center, and College Avenue Student Center from 8:00PM – 12:00AM