The Rutgers University Student Assembly (RUSA) is a unicameral legislative body, serving as the primary undergraduate student government for Rutgers University — New Brunswick.  It represents the campus-wide student voice to the administration, throughout the University community, and beyond.  RUSA also serves as the de facto governing council for the School of Arts and Sciences, the largest of the schools in Rutgers — New Brunswick.  The authority and legitimacy of the Assembly is derived from its Constitution, which is ratified by the undergraduate student body, from the participation of students in the election process, and from official recognition by the Rutgers University and its administration.

Despite Rutgers having originally being formed as Queen's College back in 1766, RUSA is relatively new, having only been formed during in the first decade of new millennium.  While RUSA itself is relatively new, it is a largely a continuation of the Rutgers College Governing Association (RCGA), which served as the student government from 1894-2007.  Moreover, RUSA is part of a larger assortment of student governments, which includes graduate student governments, student governments in Newark and Camden, and professional school student governments.  During 2007-2008, and coinciding with the creation of RUSA, Rutgers University was transitioning from a primarily college and campus based system (individual campuses within New Brunswick) to a more school and campus (New Brunswick, et al.) based system.  Accordingly, leaders of the then current student governments collaborated in what would be RUSA's "Constitutional Convention," after which the student body voted to approve the proposed governing document.  The system combined representation from schools — via representatives from the professional school student governments and from SAS in the form of SAS Student Representatives to the University Senate — and campus representatives, which serve to represent the geographical campuses within New Brunswick/Piscataway — College Avenue, Livingston, Busch, Douglas, Cook, and Off-Campus/Commuter.  The campuses largely succeed the campus councils, which represented the needs of the campuses prior to the formation of RUSA.  Campuses still caucus together and serve an important role in representing the needs of the students based on where they live.

The Assembly has undergone some revisions through its Constitution, but its Standing Rules serve as a more flexible way through which the Assembly can organize itself and establish internal policies and operating procedures.  While RUSA is a newer student government, it is a part of the tapestry of student governments, new and old, that represent their student voices throughout the Rutgers University community, and builds upon over 100 years of success of RCGA, its assumed predecessor.  With each successive year, the Assembly builds its own history of representing the student body's concerns throughout Rutgers, allocating student fees to fund student organizations, improving the student experience, and ensuring the overall representation of students within our University's system of shared governance — the incorporation of stakeholder input in the decision making of the administration and the governing boards.

For more information on RUSA and the Assembly's past initiatives and legislative history, visit the Assembly's website at ruassembly.com.