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Commencement Information

Commencement Information

  1. Congratulations! You will soon be a college graduate!
  2. On commencement day, early arrival is best to avoid being tied up in traffic congestion. Arrive at Burton Coliseum by 8:45 a.m. If you arrive after the ceremony begins, approach the southwest floor entrance, and a Committee member will escort you to your seat.
  3. Guests needing accommodations may use the elevators on the east and west sides of the Coliseum. The landings near the guard rails on the upper levels are reserved for individuals who are in wheeled chairs or who cannot negotiate the steps to the stadium seating areas.
  4. In keeping with the dignity of the ceremony:
    1. Refrain from decorating your regalia. Decorated garments will not be allowed. Checks will be conducted before the ceremony begins.
    2. Inappropriate behavior, including the use or consumption of any substances before or during the ceremony, will not be tolerated. Violators will be escorted from the floor.
    3. Turn off electronic devices during the ceremony.
    4. Ask your guests to refrain from using noisemakers as it prevents the names following yours from being heard. If deans have to pause after each name for noisemakers, the ceremony duration will be extended extensively.
  5. Undergraduates wear cap tassels on right before receiving diploma cover, then move to left when returning to seats. Graduate students wear tassels on left (no switch).
  6. After processing in, stand in front of your assigned seat until Dr. Daboval comes to the microphone
    and directs you whether to sit or stand.
    1. GENTLEMEN: Remove your caps during the playing of the National Anthem and alma mater.
    2. LADIES: Do not remove your caps at any time.
  7. If you have regalia problems, DO NOT PANIC! They can be fixed. Go to the Chalkley Room prior to the ceremony, and someone from the Bookstore will assist you.
  8. At rehearsal, please note who is sitting to your left and right and who is at the ends of your row; these are the same people you will lineup and sit with during the ceremony. Do not move into an empty seat even if it is near you; the seat may be reserved or assigned to someone who arrives late.
  9. At 9:15 a.m., the breezeway door will open. This is your signal to lineup outside. In the breezeway, the beginning of each row on both the east and west sides is indicated with a stand. Locate the stand for your row on your side, and lineup behind that stand in the correct order. West side graduates lineup in order 1-14, except Row A (see diagram). East side graduates lineup in reverse order from 28-15, except Row A (see diagram). Graduates' names are listed on the stands in the lineup orders. Use the diagram on the following page to locate your row then lineup according to the list on the stand.
    Breezeway Lineup
  10. When the processional begins, Dr. Hinton and Dr. Standley will lead in graduates from the breezeway, in front of the faculty greeting lines, and to their seats.
  11. During the ceremony, a committee member (Dr. Hebert for west side; Dr. Standley for east side) will escort each row to lineup at the appropriate time. Mrs. Eason will check each person's name in the lineup, and Dr. Osburn will direct each person once his or her name is called.
    1. WHEN YOUR NAME IS CALLED: Walk from Dr. Osburn to President Williams. Shake hands with President Williams and receive a diploma cover from him. Your photo will be taken.
    2. AFTER SHAKING HANDS: Walk toward Ms. Beasley. Do not turn toward the center aisle. Mr. Pineros will be in the center aisle and will direct you toward Ms. Beasley. Undergraduates, turn your tassels to the left. Turn when you reach Ms. Beasley and walk toward the Wind Symphony. Your photo will be taken again. Look toward the photographer, but do not stop. Your photo will be taken as you walk. Commencement Committee members on the Coliseum floor will guide you back to your seat.
  12. At the end of the ceremony, Dr. Hinton and Dr. Standley will approach Row A when the recessional music begins. Row A on both sides will begin filing out away from the center aisle. Graduates will exit row-by-row. You will be escorted from the floor to south exit. No graduates exit down the center aisle.
  13. Honors College graduate medals will be presented by President Williams during the ceremony.
  14. Honor graduate (cum laude, magna cum laude, summa cum laude) cords are distributed in the Chalkley Room before rehearsal. Graduates who did not receive honor cords before rehearsal, report to the Chalkley Room immediately after rehearsal.
  15. Summa cum laude graduates will meet at 8:45 a.m. in the Chalkley Room with Ms. Renee Leleux for newspaper photos.
  16. Ms. Beasley and Dr. Hinton will demonstrate the master's hood at the stage immediately after rehearsal.

Commencement Committee Members and Campus Units Represented:

Ms. Susan Beasley, Science
Dr. Amy Bufford, Nursing
Mr. Chad Chaisson, Education
Ms. Mary Kaye Eason, Career Services
Mr. David Guillory, Frazar Memorial Library
Dr. Dustin Hebert, Chair, Graduate Studies and Extended Education
Dr. Juliana Hinton, Science
Ms. April Millet, Enrollment Management
Dr. Toby Osburn, University Services
Ms. Erika Navarre, Enrollment Management
Mr. Javier Pineros, Engineering
Dr. Tracy Standley, Liberal Arts
Ms. Stephanie Tarver, Enrollment Management
Mr. James Watts, Business
Ms. Jodi Willis, Enrollment Management

Representatives from University offices including all departmental and college offices, the Office of University Marketing and Licensing, the Office of Public Relations, the Bookstore, the Alumni Association, the University Police Department, and Burton Coliseum work with the Commencement Committee to prepare for and execute commencement activities.