Schedule at a Glance

Student showing her diploma at commencement

5:15 p.m. Doors open to Cheel Arena for all guests 
5:30 p.m. Graduates seated in their assigned seating section
5:45 p.m. All guests with seating tickets should be seated
5:50 p.m. Faculty and Stage Party Procession begins moving
6 p.m. 125th Commencement Ceremony (Master's & Ph.D.s) begins
Directly Following Graduates' Reception in Cheel Commons

Information for Students Participating in Commencement

Student Participation in Commencement

Students eligible for graduation in May 2018 will receive notice from Student Administrative Services and will be required to fill out a form on PeopleSoft to indicate that they plan to graduate in the May 2018 ceremony. If at any time you change your mind regarding participation in the Commencement program for May 2018, you must inform Student Administrative Services at (315)268-6451 or through e-mail at commencement@clarkson.edu promptly. Detailed seating of the graduates is an important factor in Commencement.

Diplomas, Seating Order & Name Pronunciation

You will not receive your actual diploma during Commencement. Your diploma will be mailed to you after Commencement. You will sit in order by program and have an assigned seat that you will find prior to the ceremony. Please make sure to give the phonetic spelling of your name on PeopleSoft so that the reader can properly pronounce your name.

Attire/Regalia

The University Bookstore with Jostens coordinates the ordering of all regalia (cap and gown).  All regalia must be ordered on-line through Jostens by March 2018. Your pre-ordered regalia may be picked up at the University Bookstore in late April/early May. Students ordering regalia will receive exact dates and times as the event approaches. The University Bookstore will be sending all graduating students a price sheet with payment options to their Clarkson email.  Payment is required at the time of pick-up.  Jostens also has available for order diploma frames, graduation announcements, thank you notes and gifts.  If you have any questions, please email the bookstore at 1193mgr@follett.com or call 315-265-9260. After the first week of March, you will be required to call Jostens at 1-800-854-7464 to order your cap and gown.  

Order Regalia from Jostens

The basic attire for all graduating students is black academic regalia ("cap and gown") with a black tassel. In keeping with the formality of Commencement, additional adornments are limited. Doctoral degree candidates will have on an antique gold tassel.

  • Please be sure to indicate that you are receiving either a master's or doctoral degree gown when you order your regalia. Although the gowns for each type of degree are black, there are slight differences in cut and doctoral gowns also have black velvet bands. Doctoral candidates will also receive a tam instead of a cap.
  • You must also order the appropriate colored hood for the degree received. Master's degree candidates process into the arena wearing their hoods. Doctoral degree candidates will drape their hood over their left arm as they will have their hood placed on them on stage by their advisor.

Reserving Tickets for Guests

All students who plan to attend Commencement must order their reserved tickets through PeopleSoft. Each student is guaranteed as many guest tickets as needed. Seating will be assigned at random, with an assigned seat per ticket. 

Guests will be assigned to either a reserved seating ticket (the green seats around the Arena with an assigned row and seat number) or a floor seating ticket (open seating that is first come, first serve on the floor of the Arena).

Graduates will pick up their tickets the week before commencement from Cheel Campus Center at a date/time TBD. Graduates should be sure to give tickets to their guests before the doors open. Graduates can arrange to have the tickets held at the Information Table near the Cheel Campus Center's first-floor Kodak Lounge for their guests if they can't deliver them personally. No one without a ticket will be admitted prior to the start of the exercises. Graduates should explain the ticket policy to their families and plan accordingly.

Ticketing for Guests Requesting Accommodative Services

Cheel Campus Center and Cheel Arena are accessible to guests with disabilities. If your guest requires tickets for a wheel chair accessible seating area, sign language interpreter or visually impaired seating area or any other accessible accommodation these tickets will be available to request when you order your Commencement tickets in PeopleSoft.

A special section of the Cheel Arena is being reserved for those guests using wheelchairs. One family caregiver will be permitted to sit next to the guest's wheelchair. Guests with tickets for accessible seating will need to enter the Arena using the canopied exterior door to the front entrance of Cheel Campus Center.  This entrance will have a sign indicating that it is for such ticket holders.

If we are made aware that a particular graduate will have a guest needing such interpretation services, the interpreter will sign that graduate's name to the audience as well as interpreting the remarks and songs. If you have any questions or concerns regarding accommodative seating, please email events@clarkson.edu.

Students participating in Commencement will be emailed information regarding ticketing procedures and will be encouraged to share the information with their guests.

Information for Guests Attending Commencement

Entering Cheel Campus Center

Only doors into the Arena from inside the Cheel Campus Center will be used for spectator entry. For their convenience, guests with disabilities may also enter directly into the arena through a side door near the front entrance of the Cheel Campus Center. 

Tickets are required and will be checked by staff upon entry into the Arena. The "Schedule at a Glance" at the top of this page should be used to understand when guests should enter the Arena based on type of ticket. 

We ask that large bags, signs, weapons of any kind be kept out of the Arena for the comfort and safety of our guests. Guests are asked to remain seated during the ceremony unless asked to rise to allow all guests a comfortable, safe and positive experience.

Live Web Video Broadcast

For those guests unable to attend Commencement, the ceremony will be broadcast live at http://clarkson.edu/live starting at 6 p.m. on May 10.

Traveling to Clarkson University

For information on traveling to Clarkson, please see Visit Us, where you will find links to maps and directions.

On-Campus Accommodations

We are happy to offer guest room accommodations in our residence halls for parents and guests. Please make your reservations by submitting the On-Campus Room Reservation form available here in March. Room reservations will be open until the limited number of available rooms is gone or until May 1, whichever comes first. Exact location of rooms will not be determined until May 11. Guests can also see hotel accommodations or bed & breakfast accommodations, however local hotels tend to be booked for Commencement well in advance.

Reserving Tickets for Guests

All students who plan to attend Commencement must order and reserve their tickets through their Student Center in PeopleSoft. Each student is guaranteed as many guest tickets as needed, but a number must be indicated on PeopleSoft. Seating will be assigned at random, with an assigned seat per ticket. 

Guests will be assigned to either a reserved seating ticket (the green seats around the Arena with an assigned row and seat number) or a floor seating ticket (open seating that is first come, first serve on the floor of the Arena).

Graduates will pick up their tickets on Wednesday, May 9 from Cheel Campus Center at a time TBA. Graduates should be sure to give tickets to their guests before the doors open. Graduates can arrange to have the tickets held at the Information Table near the Cheel Campus Center's first-floor Kodak Lounge for their guests if they can't deliver them personally. No one without a ticket will be admitted prior to the start of the exercises. Graduates should explain the ticket policy to their families and plan accordingly.

Ticketing for Guests Requesting Accommodative Services

Cheel Campus Center and Cheel Arena are accessible to guests with disabilities. If your guest requires tickets for a wheel chair accessible seating area, sign language interpreter or visually impaired seating area or any other accessible accommodation these tickets will be available to request when you order your Commencement tickets online.

A special section of the Cheel Arena is being reserved for those guests using wheelchairs. One family caregiver will be permitted to sit next to the guest's wheelchair. Guests with tickets for accessible seating will need to enter the Arena using the canopied exterior door to the front entrance of Cheel Campus Center.  This entrance will have a sign indicating that it is for such ticket holders.

If we are made aware that a particular graduate will have a guest needing such interpretation services, the interpreter will sign that graduate's name to the audience as well as interpreting the remarks and songs. If you have any questions or concerns regarding accommodative seating, please email events@clarkson.edu.