Graduation is a huge milestone and it’s just around the corner. Before you move on to the next stage in life, here are instructions on what to do before, during, and after you walk in the Commencement ceremony.
You must register by April 4, 2017. The ceremonies are organized by College and there are three to choose from. If you are a double major, you can choose to walk in more than one ceremony. Not sure which ceremony you're in? See a list of majors by College here.
Pick up your pre-printed name card on May 11 or 12 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Admissions Visitor Center in the front lobby of the Student Business Services building (SBS). Bring your card with you to the Commencement ceremony—as you enter the stage, you'll need to present it to the name reader.
If you or your guests are driving, park in either the large parking lot opposite the Student Business Services building (lot G11) or in the lots at the corner of 14th and Union streets (lots G14 and G15). Shuttles for those with mobility issues will run continuously from those lots.
Assemble for the procession
Arrive in your cap and gown at the West Gym no later than:
- 7:45 a.m.—College of Professional Studies
- 11:15 a.m.—College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences
- 2:15 p.m.—College of Natural Resources & Sciences
Line up by your major, but it’s not necessary to be in alphabetical order.
The Mace Bearer and Marshals will lead students out of the West Gym, followed by faculty and the platform party. You will file out in two lines and must stay with your major. Please do not stop for photos or to talk with family and friends. Marshals will direct you to your seats.
- Following the President’s speech, Marshals will direct one row at a time to approach the stage. Hand your name card to the reader, and as your name is read, cross the stage. Be sure the person in front of you has their diploma cover before approaching.
- You will receive the diploma cover in your left hand and then shake your right hand. Walk to the President to shake hands. A photo will be taken, so don’t forget to smile!
- Walk down the stairs at the center of the stage or use the ramp on the west side, and return to your seat.
- For master’s degrees, the Provos and Dean of Graduate Studies will hood each candidate and then present with the diploma cover.
- Following the presentation of all the diploma covers, the President will ask you to rise. She will confer the degrees and ask you to switch your tassel from the right side of your cap to the left. Please ask your guests to stay for this celebratory moment.
After the President’s closing remarks, there will be a musical cue for the Mace Bearer to lead the platform party and faculty out of the Redwood Bowl. After they have left, graduates will be directed to exit one row at a time.
Things to remember
- In the event of an emergency, remain calm and listen for instructions from the stage.
- Out of respect for your classmates and your families please stay for the entire ceremony. Anything that could cause a distraction (toys, balloons, beach balls, etc.) is prohibited and will be confiscated.
- Bring your own reusable water bottle and encourage your guests to do the same.
- The Commencement Ceremonies will be live-streamed and there will be a link on the HSU homepage the day of the event. The recording will be available to view as soon as the ceremony is finished, and the video can be downloaded for free on the Commencement site in the weeks following. Seating is also available to view the live-stream in Van Duzer Theatre.
- Dogs are not allowed in the Redwood Bowl, except for service animals.
- Commencement will go on, rain or shine, so be prepared for any weather. Bring umbrellas in the event of rain, or sunscreen for a hot day.
- Those who require disability-related accommodations should contact the Student Disability Resource Center at (707) 826-4678 or firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible. Some accommodations may take several weeks to arrange.