The information posted to this page addresses questions regarding the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Commencement Ceremony held annually in mid-May.
Note: The McCourt School of Public Policy, Walsh School of Foreign Service, School of Nursing and School of Health hold separate commencement ceremonies for graduate students enrolled in their programs.
- McCourt School of Public Policy Ceremony
- Walsh School of Foreign Service Ceremony
- School of Nursing Ceremony
- School of Health Ceremony
Applying to Graduate
- I will graduate in August, but wish to participate in the May Commencement. Should I apply to graduate?
- No. Only students receiving their degree in May should apply to graduate for May.
- Students graduating in August who want to participate in May’s Commencement should not apply to graduate. RSVPs will be collected from programs, so contact your program administrator to let them know that you would like to participate.
- How will I get information and updates about the Commencement Ceremony?
- Information will be sent via the Graduate School Academic Affairs email account: email@example.com.
- Who do I contact if I have questions?
- If you have questions that are not answered on this FAQ page, you may contact firstname.lastname@example.org. We will aim to respond to your inquiry within 24 hours.
- I am a doctoral student and will defend my dissertation in May or over the summer. Can I participate in Commencement?
- No. Only doctoral students who have completed content revisions and formatting review by the April deadline may participate in commencement.
- August and December graduates will be invited to the Commencement ceremony in the following May.
- Can I walk in the Commencement Ceremony if I am graduating in the summer?
- If you are a doctoral candidate, you may NOT walk in the May Commencement Ceremony.
- If you are a master’s degree candidate and all requirements will be completed no later than August 31, you MAY walk in the Commencement Ceremony. However, your name will not be listed in the official program, nor will you receive your diploma. Your name will appear in the following year’s Commencement Book.
- I will earn a post-graduate certificate in May. Can I participate in Commencement?
- No. Only doctoral and master’s students are invited to participate in Commencement.
Arrival, Checking In, Ceremony Start
- What time do I need to arrive on the morning of Commencement?
- Information will be provided in April/May.
- Where do I go to check in when I arrive on campus?
- You will receive an e-mail in early May with the room number in the Intercultural Center (ICC) or White-Gravenor Hall where you need to check in. The information will also be posted on the Graduate School Commencement webpage in early May.
- What time does the Commencement Ceremony begin?
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- The Graduate School Commencement Ceremony begins at 9:00 a.m. ET.
- How long does the ceremony last?
- We expect the ceremony will last just under 3 hours. The President, Graduate School Dean and the Honorary Degree Recipient will give remarks, and then degrees will be awarded. Each graduate’s name will be called and they will walk across the stage. After leaving the stage, graduates who are eligible to receive their diplomas (see below) will be presented with them. We plan to finish no later than 11:45 a.m. ET.
- Should I bring anything to Commencement Ceremony?
- The only items you should bring to the Commencement Ceremony are your cap, gown and hood. We encourage you to leave any large personal items at home or with your guests.
- Once you leave your assigned room and proceed to the lawn, you will not be able to return to that room and retrieve items. Additionally, the rooms remain unlocked and unsupervised once the procession begins. Any items left in the rooms or elsewhere will be turned over to the Georgetown University Police Department’s Lost & Found.
- Students should also bring the device on which their rain tickets are accessible in the event that our ceremony moves indoors.
- How do I get my diploma?
- Information will be provided in April/May.
- I graduated between the prior July and December and have already received my diploma by mail. Should I bring it to the ceremony?
- There is no need to bring your diploma to the ceremony.
- Is there a translation of the Latin on my Graduate School diploma?
- Yes. A generic translation of the diploma is included in your diploma envelope; you may also view a PDF of the diploma translation on Box.
- The Registrar’s Office offers an English version that includes your name and degree and conferral date — though the format of the document is different from the Latin version. The translation request form is linked on the Registrar’s website.
Tickets & Livestream
- Do we need tickets for the Commencement Ceremony?
- The Graduate School does not issue tickets for the outdoor ceremony on Healy Lawn. Guest seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis.
- Note: In the event of severe weather, the ceremony will be moved inside McDonough Gym. Due to limited spacing, we can offer up to two guest tickets per student. Children three years or older will require a ticket; those younger will be expected to sit on the lap of a family member.
- Will the Commencement Ceremony be available online?
- Many Commencement events will be livestreamed. Information on where to tune in will be shared on Georgetown’s main Commencement website (see their Accessibility webpage) and social media channels prior these events.
- How do I make arrangements if I need special accommodations for me or any guests I invite?
- If you or any of your guests require special accommodations (wheelchair loaner, disabled seating, sign language seating) for Commencement please email email@example.com.
- You will receive information regarding designated seating areas as we get closer to the day of the event.
- What are my options for parking on the day of Commencement?
- Since Friday is a regular business day for the university, parking will be limited.
- Please refer to the Travel and Parking Tips section of the main Commencement website for guidance.
- Does the university provide graduation announcements?
- The university does not provide personalized graduation announcements for students, but they can be purchased through Jostens website.
- Are there other questions that we haven’t answered?
- Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.