March 30, 2004

Professor Paul Panayotatos

Dear Paul:

As we briefly discussed today, I am writing (with the endorsement of the Presidentís Cabinet) to ask the Senate to change the date for Commencement 2005 from Thursday, May 19, 2005 to Wednesday, May 18, 2005.

As you know, we have moved the venue for University Commencement from the Louis Brown Athletic Center to Voorhees Mall.  Currently, University Commencement is scheduled for Thursday morning, May 20, 2004, at 9:00 a.m. and Rutgers College is scheduled in the same location at 2:30 p.m.  Holding these two large ceremonies on one day causes several logistical problems.

1. The most serious problem is the lack of parking for both ceremonies.  Rutgers College parents begin to arrive at 10:00 a.m. for the 2:30 p.m. ceremony.  At that time most of the parking on the College Avenue Campus will be taken by University Commencement.  Therefore, as you know, all faculty and staff have been asked to park at the stadium to free up scarce parking spaces.

2. At the time University Commencement concludes (approximately 11:00 a.m.), the 10,000 attendees to the Rutgers College ceremony will be attempting to arrive on the College Avenue Campus.  The traffic congestion caused by this change of ceremonies will be significant.  The planned Route 18 construction at this time will further add to the local traffic congestion.

3. There are several logistical issues relating to the setup for the two ceremonies that would also be resolved by holding these two ceremonies on different days.

I appreciate your offer to discuss this on Friday with the Senate Executive Committee.  If you have questions, please call me at 2-1352.


Leslie A. Fehrenbach
Secretary of the Boards of Governors and Trustees