July 20, 2019 | 83° F

ICYMI: Largest incoming class sees new updates to campus

Photo by Thomas Boniello |

Rutgers welcomed over 9,000 incoming first-year students this year — the largest in University history. These students on the New Brunswick campus participated in their first involvement fair on Monday.

The more than 9,000 incoming students enrolled at all three Rutgers campuses this year are among the University’s largest class in its history. Those attending Rutgers—New Brunswick will associate many of the following new developments with their first year at the University. 

Student affairs:


Students parking on campus will no longer have to display a hangtag. Instead, they will just need to register their vehicle online through the new Virtual Parking Pass system

Effective this fall, the Department of Transportation Services (DOTS) is switching to an E-permit system that takes the hassle out of parking and is more environmentally conscious, said DOTS Director Jack Molenaar.

“As of today (Sept. 3) at 1 p.m., we have sold a total of 10,689 parking E-Permits since they went up for sale in the middle of August,” he said. “Of that number, 3,060 are resident permits and 7,629 are commuter permits.

Paper parking tickets and citations will no also longer be issued, he said. Violations will arrive as e-citations directly to a student’s email.

Molenaar said students parking on campus with an E-permit need to park so that their vehicle plate is facing the “drive aisle” to ensure their plates are able to be read properly.

“For example, PA plates only have back plates so the back plate needs to be visible to the drive aisle; the PA vehicles cannot be backed in,” he said.

Bus Shelter

A bus shelter is back at the bus stop by Scott Hall and The Yard @ College Ave.

In February 2017, The Daily Targum reported that the University had no plans to bring a shelter back to the popular bus stop.

Executive Vice President of Strategic Planning and Operations Antonio Calcado said to the Targum at the time that Rutgers only has bus shelters at stops exposed to the elements without any other available options.

This new shelter, which is “99 percent” complete and operational, was brought back following student feedback, he said.

“The new bus shelter was added in response to our ongoing Transportation needs assessment and positive student feedback at a number of forums and events,” Calcado said. “Construction started in mid-summer and the project is 99 percent complete and operational.”

myRutgers Portal

The “my dashboard” tab in the myRutgers portal has been updated to centralize information pertaining to each individual students’ campus and college needs.

New this fall semester, the tab was updated as a part of the University's Student Experience Improvement Initiative, said David Badger, director of middleware application and data management services in the Office of Information Technology (OIT) - Enterprise Application Services.

It serves as a central hub for information about course schedules and registration, grades and transcripts, financial aid management and term bill payments and information updates. 

Badger said that 100 students were interviewed during the 18-month process of creating the updated feature. 

“We’re looking to provide additional widgets and functions, like key information from learning management systems such as Canvas, Sakai, Blackboard and Moodle, as well as widgets for advisory services, career services, housing, dining, events, to-do lists and much more,” Badger said in a press release. “We want the dashboard to do the most for our students, and the way we can achieve that is by getting feedback from our students who can use the myRutgers feedback form in the dashboard — we want to hear from you.” 

Rutgers Developments: 

Paul Robeson Plaza

Distinguished Rutgers alumnus and acclaimed cultural figure Paul Robeson joins one of the University’s most recent builds at Voorhees Mall on the College Avenue campus. 

The Paul Robeson Plaza is an initiative launched between the Rutgers African-American Alumni Alliance (RAAA) and the University’s Class of 1971 Milestone Campaign to commemorate its 45th anniversary.

On Sept. 21, 2017, the Rutgers University Foundation page dedicated to fundraising for the Plaza posted it received the required $200,000 to fully fund construction, according to the fundraising site

“The Class gift will serve as a beacon celebrating the power of the human spirit--publicly proclaiming Robeson's life and legacy as one of Rutgers’ greatest advocates for national and global social justice,” according to the site. 

A groundbreaking ceremony for the Plaza takes place today at 11 a.m. 

Richard M. Weeks Hall of Engineering 

A newly-built engineering building on Busch campus has opened its doors. 

The Richard M. Weeks Hall of Engineering is 100,000 square feet of environmental sustainability created as an “Engineering Gateway” that offers students, faculty and researchers smart classrooms, collaborative laboratories, according to Rutgers.edu. 

The hall will focus on robotics, urban and coastal water systems, geosystems, environmental process and molecular analysis, energy and more, according to the site.

Weeks Hall is named in honor of Richard M. Weeks, a Rutgers alumnus who chairs at one of the leading Marine construction firms in the United States and Canada. 

New Basketball Court

The Rutgers Athletic Center now has a new basketball court. The University’s basketball and wrestling teams now represent the State University of New Jersey with a scarlet R laid over an outline of the state etched into the court, according to the myCentralJersey website.

“We’ve put the map of New Jersey front-and-center on our basketball court,” said Director of Athletics Pat Hobbs in an interview with the myCentralJersey website. “We’re ‘Jersey,’ and we are very proud of being ‘Jersey.’ We now have one of the most identifiable floors in the country.”

The newly-redesigned court will also be used for everything from the yearly interaction of Dance Marathon in the spring to end-of-year departmental graduation ceremonies and to occasional events such as the 2017 Big Ten Gymnastics Championships, according to the Rutgers Athletics site.  

Christian Zapata

Ryan Stiesi

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