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McNeese’s Spring 2021 Commencement Set

May 5, 2021 | McNeese Public Relations
A young lady stands with her diploma cover.

McNeese State University will hold five ceremonies Friday and Saturday, May 14 and May 15, to confer degrees on the graduates at the university’s 156th Commencement in Burton Coliseum. The ceremony for the College of Agricultural Sciences and the Burton College of Education will be combined.

“Tickets will not be required for guests at any ceremony,” Candace Townsend, McNeese director for public relations and university events, said. “We are required to adhere to the modified Phase 3 COVID-19 guidelines for venues such as Burton Coliseum that went into effect on April 28.”

The guidelines are as follows:

  • Guest capacity is 75% and seating will be socially distanced.
  • The wearing of face masks is recommended at all times for everyone in attendance (graduates, staff and guests).
  • Guests will not be allowed access to the coliseum floor at any time before, during or after the ceremonies.
  • Graduates will not be allowed access to the guest seating areas at any time before, during or after the ceremonies.

The spring Class of 2021 includes 738 candidates from 33 parishes, 15 states and 23 countries, and 804 degrees will be awarded, including 34 associate degrees, 671 bachelor’s degrees, 98 master’s degrees and one education specialist degree.

Honorary doctorates will be given to two McNeese alumni at commencement – Richard Ieyoub, commissioner of the Louisiana Department of Conservation and former Louisiana Attorney General, and Paul Rainwater, a natural disaster management expert and retired U.S. Army Colonel.

Doors will open one and one-half hours before each ceremony. For the safety and security of everyone in attendance, no bags larger than 10”x10” will be allowed inside Burton Coliseum and all bags are subject to search.

All ceremonies will be livestreamed on the official McNeese State University Facebook page at for family members and friends unable to attend commencement. The ceremony will also be broadcast on the Calcasieu Government Channel at a date to be announced.

The dates, times, college ceremony and college guest speakers are as follows:

Friday, May 14

10 a.m. – College of Agricultural Sciences and Burton College of Education

Karl Bruchhaus, superintendent, Calcasieu Parish School District

1 p.m. – College of Science, Engineering and Mathematics

Jolie Rhinehart, general manager, Lake Charles Phillips 66 Refinery

4 p.m. – College of Business

Paul Rainwater, owner, Rainwater Consulting in Baton Rouge

Saturday, May 15

9:30 a.m. – College of Liberal Arts

Richard Ieyoub, commissioner, Louisiana Department of Conservation

1 p.m. – College of Nursing and Health Professions

James Carter, chair, University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors

Contact Information

The Office of Public Relations and University Events

4205 Ryan Street
Lake Charles, LA 70609