Candidates and faculty assemble at 9:30 a.m. in various sites  in the Simon Forum.  Remember that the official call as to whether the ceremony will be indoors or out will be made on Monday, May 11, and communicated to you by email as well as by posting on this website. If the ceremony is indoors in the Simon Forum, you will be limited to the seven downpour tickets that came with your announcements.

Students should plan to arrive in your academic attire. You will need to sign in and to pick up your name card. This name card will be read as you cross the stage. If you wish to write your name phonetically on the card for the reader, you may do so. No other hand-written markings will be read.

You will be instructed by the faculty Marshalls, and volunteers, to line up in the appropriate order. The procession begins at approximately 10:30.

Professional photographs of all  graduates will be taken both on stage and as you leave the stage. Proofs will be emailed approximately three to four days after the event and will be available for purchase. Please sign up now at Grad Images in order to receive proofs.


Platform & Trustees Great Hall, S.W. Bowne (outdoors); Haselton Room, Baldwin Gym (indoors)
CLA Simon Forum
Theological School Simon Forum
Graduate School Simon Forum
Faculty Upper-level deck, student lounge area at south end of the Simon Forum

Order of March

Within each degree group, candidates are so arranged that they approach the dean in alphabetical order. Follow the instructions of the marshals for your group. Degrees are awarded in descending order, beginning with the doctor of philosophy and concluding with the bachelor of arts.

Each candidate is given a card with her or his name on it, along with the degree and any honors earned. The candidate’s name will be read from the card.

  • BA candidates should hand the card to Associate Dean Waldron.
  • STM, MDiv, MA, MAM and MTS candidates should hand the card to Dean Samuel.
  • Graduate School candidates should hand the card to Dean Rogers.
  • D.Min. candidates should hand the card to Director Savage.

If you expect any difficulty with the pronunciation of your name, please indicate the desired pronunciation on a card.

The procession moves in double file as outlined below.

Chief Marshal
Associate Marshals – Faculty
Faculty – Faculty Emeritors
Associate Marshals – Caspersen School of Graduate Studies
Caspersen School of Graduate Studies
PhD Candidates
DLitt Candidates
DMH Candidates
MA Candidates
MAT Candidates
MFA Candidates
MLitt Candidates
MMH Candidates
MCT Candidates
Associate Marshals – Theological School
Theological School
PhD Candidates (GDR)
DMin Candidates
STM Candidates
MDiv Candidates
MA Candidates
MAM Candidates
Associate Marshals – College of Liberal Arts
College of Liberal Arts
BA Candidates
Associate Marshal – Trustees
Associate Marshal – Platform Party
Platform Party

Line of March

Follow the pace set by the chief marshal and associates. Allow an arm’s length from the person ahead and maintain distance.


Follow the lead of the platform group in removing and replacing caps and rising and being seated for various parts of the ceremonies.

Platform Procedures

When called to the platform, candidates should proceed across the stage as their names are read. The dean or president hands you a diploma cover ; receive it with your left hand and shake with your right hand. Continue on across the stage and return to your seat.


After the ceremony, graduates do not recess. They should stand during the recession of faculty, marshals and the platform party. Faculty should follow the instructions of their marshals. Graduates should remain in place until the procession clears the balloon arch before greeting family members. (If commencement is held in the Simon Forum as a result of inclement weather, students will recess out of the commencement area.)