UW Commencement

Ceremony conduct agreement

By participating in commencement you agree to observe the following guidelines during the ceremony.

Commencement is intended to be a festive occasion celebrating the accomplishments of our students. However, it is also ceremonial. Students are expected to remain in their seats during the entire ceremony, unless utilizing the restrooms (inside the NW tunnel). Students are required to be in their seats for the address by our commencement speaker. (Restrooms will be closed at this time.) Wandering around the floor of the stadium and visiting with guests in the stands is prohibited. Cell phones are permitted, but out of courtesy for other participants, students are asked to make judicious use of phones and not use them during the formal speaking portions of the ceremony.

It is particularly important that students respect their fellow students and the faculty, administrators and guests who have come to witness and participate in the conferring of their degrees. For this reason, graduates are expected to return to their seats after they walk and remain there until all students have walked and the members of the stage party have exited the stage. Please plan post-ceremony activities accordingly.

Start early

trafficStart your day early, as traffic to Husky Stadium will be heavy. Graduation is one event where it’s not fashionable to be late! Consider the extra time it will take to park the car and walk to the Outdoor Practice Facility.

Check in at 12:30

All graduates will line up on the Outdoor Practice Field (east of Husky Stadium).

  • Purple ticket holders will check in at the purple entrance to the Outdoor Practice Field.
  • Gold ticket holders will check in at the gold entrance.
  • Present both your ticket and your Husky card or state-issued photo ID.
  • Be prepared to open your gowns for visual inspection. No backpacks allowed. Students are encouraged to not bring bags, purse, etc., as there is no secure location to store them and they are not allowed on the field.
  • You may not change your line up area unless given permission by the Office of Ceremonies.

2016-CommEntranceMap

line up for bachelors of science students

Lining up: where to go

Bachelor candidates: Line up behind the banner for your school or college in four parallel lines.

Master candidates: Line up behind the “Master” banner in four parallel lines.

Doctoral candidates: Line up behind the “Doctoral” banner in four parallel lines.

If you wish to sit beside someone during the ceremony, you should march behind or in front of one another.
Student Line-up Map

Procession

The procession will move from the east (stage) end of the stadium to the west end. Faculty marshals will direct you down the proper aisles, back toward the stage and into your seating row. Move to the end of the row and immediately sit down so as not to impede the seating of others. Please stay out of the center aisle until the deans and president’s parties have entered. Academic caps may be removed while candidates are seated, but must be worn while standing. Caps should be removed during the playing of the “Star-Spangled Banner.”

If you arrive late you will need to fall in at the end of the procession. Once the procession has begun there is no further opportunity for anyone to join his or her group.

The walk to the stage

Note: Only those receiving Doctoral degrees will have their names announced.

Doctoral candidates

  1. Doctoral candidates will be seated beginning in the first section of seats. The Dean of the Graduate School will ask candidates to rise for the conferring of degrees. Remain standing while the degrees are conferred.
  2. Faculty marshals will then direct you to the stage.
  3. Important! Don’t forget to bring with you:
    1. Your Doctoral Reading Card
    2. The photo card included in the packet on your seat. Fill it out and take it with you. Hand it to the photographers before you go to the stage.
  4. Upon reaching the start of the ramp, hand your Doctoral Reading Card to the Reading Marshal and proceed up the ramp as soon as he/she begins announcing your name and degree.
  5. Go across the stage. Accept your diploma memento with your left hand and shake hands with your right hand. Please be aware that your picture will be taken as you shake hands.
  6. Return to your seat via the center ramp and aisle and sit down. The marshals will direct you. Students are expected to remain in their seats until the completion of the recessional.

Master candidates

  1. Master candidates will be seated in the second section of seats. The Dean of the Graduate School will ask candidates to rise for the conferring of degrees. Remain standing while the degrees are conferred.
  2. Faculty marshals will then direct you to the stage.
  3. A photo card will be included in a packet on your seat. Fill it out and take it with you to hand to the photographers before you go up to the stage.
  4. Faculty marshals will direct you to the stage.
  5. Go across the stage. Accept your diploma memento with your left hand and shake hands with your right hand. Please be aware that your picture will be taken as you receive your memento.
  6. Return to your seat via the center ramps and aisle and sit down. The marshals will help direct you. Students are expected to remain in their seats until the completion of the recessional.

Bachelor candidates

  1. Bachelor candidates will be seated beginning in the third section of seats and extending to the back of the field. The deans of each of your respective schools will call the schools in the order designated in the commencement program.
  2. When you hear your school called, please stand. Remain standing until the dean has presented you as a group to the president and instructed you to be seated.
  3. After all deans have presented their schools, graduates from all Schools and Colleges will be asked to rise together for the conferring of degrees. You will then be seated
  4. A photo card will be included in a packet on your seat. Fill it out and take it with you to hand to the photographers before you go to the stage.
  5. Beginning with the first row, candidates will march out to the outside aisles and up to the stage under the direction of the faculty marshals.
  6. Go across the stage. Accept your diploma memento with your left hand and shake hands with your right hand. Please be aware that your picture will be taken as you receive your memento.
  7. Return to your seat via the center ramps and aisle and sit down. Students are expected to remain in their seats until the completion of the recessional.

Recessional

After all graduates have walked, the graduating class rises for the singing of the school song. The ceremony is then closed. Graduates are to remain standing at their seats until all members of the stage party have left the stage and cleared the field.

When the ceremonial (classical) music has ended and pop music begins, you are dismissed. Family and friends are welcome to join you outside the stadium but they are not permitted on the field.