Congratulations graduates! This page includes important information regarding your participation and planning for Commencement Weekend. We look forward to celebrating with you!
Important dates and deadlines
March 6, 2024: Application to graduate available in Axess
April 12 , 2024 (5:00 p.m. PT): Application to graduate deadlineApplications received after this deadline will be assessed a $50 late fee
June 7, 2024 (5:00 p.m. PT): Late application to graduate deadlineNo applications will be accepted after this date
Rental regalia ordering dates and deadlines will be added in winter quarter.
Top 5 FAQs for Graduating Students
Am I eligible to participate in this year’s main Commencement ceremony?
You are automatically eligible to participate if:
- you have previously conferred a degree in Summer 2023, Autumn 2023, or Winter 2024
- you are expected to confer your degree in Spring 2024 or Summer 2024
- you are a coterm student who began your undergraduate degree program in Autumn 2020
If you do not fall into the eligibility criteria above, complete the form linked below when it is posted to request an exception to participate in this year’s ceremony. If you are automatically eligible to participate, you do not need to complete the form.
Commencement Participation Request form will be posted in 2024.
Please note: This eligibility criteria only applies to the main Commencement ceremony. If you would like to participate in your school or department ceremony, please check with them directly for their eligibility criteria and any actions you may need to take to confirm participation in that ceremony, including walking across the stage and having your name called out or included in the program.
Do I need to apply to graduate to participate?
To graduate, you must file your graduation application by the application deadline (see the academic calendar for dates). Instructions for applying to graduate, as well as a graduation checklist, can be found of the Student Services website. If you are planning on conferring more than one degree — for example, an undergraduate and graduate degree, a PhD and master's degree — a separate application to graduate must be submitted for each degree.
Eligibility to participate in the university's Commencement ceremony is based on a student’s actual OR expected graduation term. Expected Graduation Terms are based on matriculation year (e.g. 4 years after matriculation for an undergraduate student). Undergraduate students and coterminal students who began their undergraduate program in Autumn 2019 have an Expected Graduation Term of Spring 2023 and therefore do not need to apply to graduate in order to be eligible to participate in the main Commencement ceremony. Note: Expected Graduation Terms are calculated differently for graduate students. Graduate students should plan to apply to graduate or request an exception if they want to participate.
Am I eligible to participate in my department’s ceremony?
Each department has different eligibility requirements and processes for requesting an exception to participate. Please check directly with your department regarding eligibility for their ceremony.
I was eligible to participate last year, but I was unable to attend. Can I participate this year instead?
Please complete the Commencement Participation Request form when it is posted in 2024 to request an exception to participate in this year’s ceremony.
Do I need tickets for my guests and how many guests can attend?
Most events during the weekend do not have tickets and generally there are no limits on the number of guests graduates can bring. There are exceptions and some events do require RSVP, such as Senior Dinner on the Quad, which is exclusively for graduating seniors. Some department ceremonies may require tickets or have restrictions on number of guests due to limited capacity of a venue. It is recommended to contact the departments directly for information about these events.
Info for Coterms
You are automatically eligible to participate in the main Commencement ceremony if you are a coterm student who began your undergraduate degree program in Autumn 2020.
Eligibility to participate in the university's Commencement ceremony is based on a student’s actual OR expected graduation term. Expected Graduation Terms are based on matriculation year (e.g. 4 years after matriculation for an undergraduate student). Undergraduate students and coterminal students who began their undergraduate program in Autumn 2020 have an Expected Graduation Term of Spring 2024 and therefore do not need to apply to graduate in order to be eligible to participate in the main Commencement ceremony.
Info for Alumni
If you were eligible to participate in last year's Commencement ceremony but were unable to attend and would like to participate in the ceremony this year, please complete the Commencement Participation Request form when it is posted in 2024.
Commencement Weekend Do's
Dress comfortably. That includes shoes too. While there is generally no dress code requirement, most graduates opt to wear business casual attire under their robes (think slacks, dress shirt with or without a tie, blouse or skirt/dress) for Baccalaureate and Commencement and evening cocktail attire for Senior Dinner on the Quad. Remember that you will be standing in the lineup, walking quite far across various surfaces (gravel, pavement, grass) and sitting in the sun for extended periods of time, so make sure to wear clothing that is comfortable, not too warm, but will still look good in all of the photos you will take throughout the day (with and without your robe).
Travel light. Only bring what you need or leave valuables with family or friends. You will have to carry what you bring (as long as it meets the clear bag policy requirements) with you onto the field, plus you'll want to have an extra hand to pick up a program and bottle of water, so less is more.
Arrive early. Gates open early and graduates are expected to arrive at least an hour prior to the procession start time. Avoid long lines at the entry and arrive early. Make sure you give yourself enough time to find parking, walk to the venue, go through security, grab a program/water and get into the lineup. You'll also want to factor in time to take photos and catch up with family and friends. Avoid the stress of rushing and arrive early.
Follow instructions. Make sure to read the candidate instructions ahead of time. There will be different instructions for Advanced Degree graduates and Undergraduates, so pay close attention to the signs around the graduate lineup area, and to verbal instructions from Marshals and staff.
Make sure your phone is fully charged. Opportunities to charge will be few and far between, so you'll want to be sure to be fully charged before heading out the door so you can contact family and friends, take photos and get updates.