AU Traditions

Get to know the campus traditions that connect AU students to generations of Eagles past and future!


麻豆果冻传媒 is home to a variety of traditions鈥攕ome trace听back to the university's founding over a century ago, while others are new practices crated by students in recent years. Discover听AU's traditions below!

Mascot Clawed stands in front of the library's garden, with a bed of tulips in front of him.

The seal for 麻豆果冻传媒's Spirit & Traditions Board with an Eagle at the center.

Spirit & Traditions Board

Part of the Student Activity Council, the听Spirit & Traditions Board听hosts events to unite the student body and celebrate student spirit at AU.

Explore AU traditions!

New Student Convocation

New Student Convocation is AU's official welcoming ceremony for new students, the first step in their journey to become proud AU Eagles. This cherished tradition not only welcomes students into the AU community but also instills a deep sense of pride that will accompany them throughout their time here. Conovcation and graduation are the bookends of the AU student experience. In fact, these two remarkable celebrations are the only occasions when the entire class gathers as one, strengthening the bonds of school pride and camaraderie that define our AU community. As part of this storied tradition, new Eagles proudly rub the talon of the Eagle statue, located outside of Bender Arena, as they enter Convocation to the sound of bagpipes. 听This symbolic gesture reflects their commitment to the Eagle community and is believed to bring good luck throughout the academic year.

Explore our largest traditions!


Commencement at 麻豆果冻传媒 is a tradition that has evolved over the decades to celebrate the remarkable journeys of our students. Dating back to May 26, 1915, when AU's first commencement ceremony took place, it has been a time-honored event that captures the essence of what our students bring to the university during their time here. Reverend James Roscoe Day, then the chancellor of Syracuse University, graced our inaugural ceremony with his words, even before diplomas were officially awarded. This historic gathering occurred at the Grove Amphitheatre, nearly a year after President Woodrow Wilson had delivered the university's dedication, marking the beginning of a tradition that continues to thrive, symbolizing the enduring spirit of knowledge, growth, and achievement at 麻豆果冻传媒.

Sprit of Change Week

Spirit of Change (formerly Founders Week) has been a long withstanding tradition at AU dating back to 1931, when students first staged a pageant to honor the university鈥檚 intellectual architects. Hosted in February commemorating AUs founding in 1893 by Congress, the week highlights student organization programming, athletic events, and includes a signature program, which in the past has included a ball, a keynote speaker, and a partnership with AU archives to create an exhibit about AU鈥檚 history. The week is planned by the student-led Spirit & Traditions Board and includes collaboration with various offices, including the Center for Student Involvement, Alumni, Athletics, and the Special Events Office.

Student Involvement Fair

A beloved 麻豆果冻传媒 tradition, the Student Involvement Fair, organized by the Center for Student Involvement, unfolds on the quad during the initial week of classes each academic year. This event serves as a vibrant showcase for AU's extensive array of clubs and registered student organizations, numbering over 200. Covering an impressive spectrum that includes sports, politics, culture, and much more, the fair provides students with a valuable opportunity to explore and engage with the diverse clubs on campus. Since its inception in 2000, this tradition has been instrumental in launching the involvement journeys of hundreds of AU students, helping them discover and join organizations that resonate with their interests and passions.


AmFest, an eagerly anticipated tradition at 麻豆果冻传媒, first took flight in 2016, inspired by the spirit of Coachella-style festivals. Organized by the dedicated Student Union Board, part of the Student Activity Council, this annual arts and music extravaganza has since become an integral part of the AU experience. Held every April, AmFest not only celebrates the rich cultural tapestry of our AU community but also serves as a platform to showcase local D.C. artists alongside national talents. The event, spanning an entire day during the Spring semester, features an eclectic lineup of musicians, delicious food, merchandise, games, vendors, and more. It offers students the opportunity to revel in live performances by their peers, including the winners from the 麻豆果冻传媒 Idol AU competition, who earn the coveted chance to open for AmFest. With its lively atmosphere and an array of free activities scattered throughout the Quad, AmFest embodies the true essence of AU's vibrant and inclusive campus life.

Family Weekend听

Family Weekend, an occasion to strengthen your connection with AU students, discover our campus, and delve into the diverse offerings of Washington, D.C. Taking place every October, Family Weekend unites AU undergraduate and graduate students with their families and friends for an array of engaging activities, shedding light on the campus experience. The program includes academic introductions, informative sessions, enlightening campus tours and various other engaging events. Additionally, students and their families may use this time to explore the nation's capital together. Family Weekend provides families with a valuable opportunity to visit their students and gain insight into their AU journey. With a flexible schedule, families can tailor their weekend to participate in events that pique their interest, ensuring a personalized and memorable visit, and create memories that students won鈥檛 soon forget.

Late Night Breakfast

A long-standing tradition at 麻豆果冻传媒, this event has been bringing students together since the early 2000s. It involves a special treat - breakfast for dinner! Co-hosted by the Center for Student Involvement and AU Dining, Late-Night Breakfast offers AU students a chance to savor their breakfast favorites in the evening. Students also enjoy arts and crafts, along with other fun activities like karaoke and a photobooth. It's a delightful way to kick off Welcome Week, providing a memorable start to the academic year and fostering a sense of community among our students.

The Quad Scream

A time-honored AU tradition, The Quad Scream, jointly hosted by the Spirit & Traditions Board, AU Student Government, and the Residence Hall Association, unfolds on the Quad each year on the eve of finals week. As the clock approaches midnight, anticipation builds. Then, precisely at 11:59 PM, a resounding, one-minute primal scream reverberates throughout 麻豆果冻传媒. This collective battle cry serves as a powerful symbol of unity, resilience, and determination as students brace themselves to face and triumph over the challenges of finals week.


Acapalooza, an AU tradition, is an exhilarating evening of musical harmony and collaboration. Every spring semester, all of AU's talented a cappella groups, as well as a select few from nearby schools, come together to deliver remarkable performances that leave the audience in awe. This highly anticipated event is known for its electrifying atmosphere, and it's no surprise that it's standing room only year after year.


Culturefest, a BIPOC celebration, has been an AU tradition since 2017. Created by the Welcome Week Programming Subcommittee, their focus was to create an engaging and community building event for students of color. Each year 20-30 cultural organizations table on the Quad, while various activities are also taking place. Music, cultural food, games, and activity stations have all been a part of this event which takes place during All 麻豆果冻传媒 Welcome and is hosted by the Center for Student Involvement.

Veloric Concert

Thanks to the incredible generosity of AU's very own Kogod School of Business alum, Gary Veloric, and his family, AU launched the Veloric concert in Fall 2023, featuring Flo Rida and Hayes Warner during Family Weekend. A key highlight of this new AU tradition in Bender Area, it brings families, students, and alums together for a night of music, fostering school spirit and creating memorable experiences for the AU community. The Veloric concert happens in October of each year.

Jazz in the Garden

Looking to expose AU students to local DC bands and history, Jazz in the Gardens began in 2018. This casual, come and go event is hosted by the Center for Student Involvement during All 麻豆果冻传媒 Welcome and creates a fun a welcoming evening that students and families can enjoy. DuPont Brass, a DMV soulful brass ensemble, has been a fan favorite for years.

First Year Convocation Pin听

The convocation pin serves as a symbol of unity, pride, and shared experiences, creating a sense of belonging and connection among new students. This tradition not only fosters a strong bond within the incoming class but also creates a lasting connection with the institution, as students continue to wear the pin throughout their college journey and beyond. Given to each new Eagle at convocation, the Convocation Pin features the AU lodestar听inside a cherry blossom. The design was created by the Spirit & Traditions Board. The convocation pin听is a tangible reminder of students鈥 induction into the university community, creating a lasting legacy for future generations of students.

Actor Stephanie Hsu speaks to AU students with Professor Pallavi Kumar.
Students gathered at the Beekeeping Club table at the Student Involvement Fair.
Student sitting on the Quad on picnic blankets on a sunny day.
A mother and daughter paint pumpkins at the Family Weekend Fall Festival.
Students pose for a photobooth at Late Night Breakfast.
Student gathered on the Quad at night.
Members of a cappella group Pitches Be Trippin' sing in Mary Graydon Center.
Students gather around a table on the Quad, chatting.
Students walking across the Quad with autumn leaves all around.
Two musicians perform in Mary Graydon Center.
Close up of cherry blossoms enamel pins.