Commencement

Graduate FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Congratulations on your accomplishments! Find answers to your most pressing questions here!

Commencement Day 

Before the Ceremony

Graduate Hooding Ceremony

Grad Fair and Regalia

Tickets and Seating

June 15, 2022

Alaska Airlines Arena at Hec Edmundson Pavilion

Ceremony 1

  • Student check-in: 11AM
  • Doors open: 12 PM
  • Procession starts: 1 p.m. 

Ceremony 2

  • Students check-in: 3pm
  • Doors open at 4 p.m.
  • Procession at 5 p.m.

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Before the Ceremony

Is there a difference between Graduation and Commencement?

  • Yes. Commencement is the ceremony that brings students, faculty and family together to celebrate your graduation. At Commencement, you will wear degree-appropriate regalia, participate in a formal ceremony with your classmates and faculty, and receive a diploma cover.
  • Graduation is a final confirmation that you have completed all degree requirements. Your diploma will be sent to you approximately 3-4 months after your last quarter once the Office of the Registrar has confirmed that you have completed all your degree requirements.

What dates do I need to be aware of?

  • April 15: Deadline to apply to graduate (undergraduates) or submit a degree request (graduate students) and for your name to appear in the Commencement Ceremony printed program. Find out more.
  • May 2 - 22: Registration is open for the Commencement Ceremony.
  • May 24 - 26: Grad Fair, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. at North Creek Events Center
  • June 11: Graduate Hooding Ceremony on the UWB Sports Field.  
  • June 15: Arrive at Alaska Airlines Arena to participate in the Commencement Ceremony.

I registered to graduate with the Office of the Registrar. Am I ready for the ceremony?

I’m eligible for an honor cord, how can I get one?

  • Honor cords are provided by the Commencement Office to all eligible students. If you have a question about your eligibility, please contact the Registrar. Students awarded an honor cord may choose to receive it at Grad Fair or at the Awards & Recognition Ceremony.

Can I participate in the commencement ceremony even if I am taking summer courses?

  • Yes, please file your graduation application with your advisor by April 15.

Is there a Commencement fee?

  • Not at this time. However, all participants are responsible for purchasing their cap and gown.

Is there a rehearsal for the ceremony?

  • No, there is no rehearsal. If you’re curious what the ceremony generally looks like, you can look up any of our annual commencement ceremonies on YouTube.

I completed my purchases on the registration form but want to add something to it – how do I do that?

  • Once your form has been submitted, you will not be able to make changes online. Any changes required to your order (e.g., extra tassel) may be requested at Grad Fair (May 24 - 26 in NCEC) when picking up your order.

Can I get a diploma cover if I do NOT participate in the ceremony?

  • Yes. Diploma covers are provided to students who participate in the ceremony. If you are not participating, you may purchase one through the ceremony registration form. Choose that you are not participating in the ceremony, and you will be directed to make other purchases. The diploma cover is available for $19 and can be picked up at Grad Fair.

Graduate Hooding Ceremony

What to expect:              

10:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

  • Student check-in
  • Find your School check-in table and collect your name card.
  • THIS IS HOW YOUR NAME IS READ WHEN YOU CROSS THE STAGE.

10:30 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.                                         

  • Line up with your school and program & stay in line. The people in front and behind you will be seated next to you.

11:00 a.m.                                          

  • Process to the ceremony and stay in your line. Staff Marshals will guide you.
  • Faculty and Stage Party process.
  • Ceremony begins.
  • Don’t forget your name card! You will be hooded on stage. You will NOT receive a diploma cover.
  • Closing!               
  • Stage Party and Faculty exit.
  • Students are released row by row by Staff Marshals. REMAIN SEATED until your row has been released.

12:15 p.m. – Ceremony ends (approximate time)                            

  • Students will exit to meet family and friends.

More information canbe found on the Graduate Hooding Ceremony website.

What should I wear and bring?

  • Master’s apparel: Black master’s gown with cap, degree-colored hood and black tassel.
  • Carry your hood with you – you will be hooded on stage by faculty.
  • Comfortable shoes, there is some walking on pavement and the ceremony is on grass.

Guests & Seating

  • The ceremony will be held in a large tent on the sports field. There are no tickets. However, due to space restrictions and respect for others, it is requested that students bring no more than 4 guests so that all guests may have a seat.

Parking

  • Parking is available at no cost at the North Parking Garage. Parking permits and payment are required at other parking lots and garages on campus.

Grad Fair and Regalia

What is Grad Fair?

  • Grad Fair is when you pick up your cap and gown, student ticket, guest tickets, and anything else you purchased on the registration form. Grad Fair occurs May 24 - 26, from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. at North Creek Events Center.

What if I can’t make those dates?

  • Late Pick-Up will be on Thursday, June 2 in the UW2 Commons Lobby from 4 - 7 p.m. If you can’t make Grad Fair or Late Pick-Up, you can ask someone else to pick up for you at either event; however they must have your confirmation order and student ID number in order to pick up your regalia and order.

I need to change my pick-up date!

  • Please feel free to pick up your graduation items any time during Grad Fair.

Can I borrow regalia?

  • Yes, you can borrow regalia from a friend if the gown is appropriate to your degree (Bachelor vs Master), fits the guidelines for the University of Washington academic regalia, and is correct for your height. You must also wear a degree-appropriate tassel, which can be purchased separately. Mortarboards may be purchased separately as well. Please email the Commencement Office a photo of the gown you hope to wear at the ceremony for approval at uwbgrads@uw.edu
  • Bachelor's Apparel: Black gown with seal, cap, and degree-colored tassel

Bachelor Robe

  • Master's Apparel: Black master's gown with cap, and degree-colored hood and black tassel

Can I decorate my cap?

  • Yes, you can decorate your cap. The UW Bothell Alumni Council will also have a cap decorating supplies at Grad Fair and day-of the ceremony at the graduate line-up and check-in areas.

My gown is too small/big!

  • Purchased gowns can be exchanged if you bring the gown and your order form to Grad Fair or Late Pick-Up. Please keep in mind the gowns are not fitted and are meant to be loose. Length should be 6 inches below the knee.

What color tassel do I need? Can I wear the purple and gold tassel at the ceremony?

  • Your tassel color will be automatically generated when you fill out the ceremony participation form based on your degree.
  • You must wear your degree tassel at the ceremony.
  • The purple and gold tassel is a souvenir.  

What are stoles? Can I wear them?

  • Only stoles that have been approved by the Commencement Office may be worn at the ceremony.
  • The purple or gold Stole of Gratitude are not meant for graduates to wear.  The Stole of Gratitude is given to a family member or friend who offered support to to the student through their time in college. They will wear it with pride during the ceremony!

Tickets and Seating

Do I need a ticket?

  • No, your UW Husky ID card or other valid ID will allow you to gain entrance into the ceremony. 

How many guest tickets do I get?

  • Students participating in the ceremony may receive up to 4 guest tickets. If there are tickets remaining after all tickets have been claimed, additional tickets will be available by lottery draw.  Only ticketed guests may enter the arena; please do not invite guests who do not have tickets. Tickets can be ordered on the registration form (opens on May 2) and picked up at Grad Fair (May 24 - 26).

What about access and seating for the elderly and those needing accommodations such as wheelchairs or listening assistance?

  • Students should request accommodated tickets for their guests requiring extra time to access their seats, have mobility issues or accommodations or need assistive listening devices. Accommodated guest entry opens a half an hour early. Ushers will help guide guests to accessible seating. Assistive listening devices will be available on the concourse, and guests requiring ASL services will be escorted to a designated section.

If I don't get enough tickets, can family and friends at home watch the ceremony?

Do I need a ticket for a child or infant?

  • Children ages 2 and under do not need a ticket.

Commencement Day

Are there student instructions for the day of the ceremony?

  • Yes, registered graduates participating in the ceremony received a detailed email with instructions.

What time should I arrive at Alaska Airlines Arena?

  • First ceremony
    • ​11:00 AM Student check-in opens
    • 11:45 AM Guests with accommodated tickets
    • 12:00 PM Guest entry opens
    • 12:15 PM Student check-in closes (late arrivals may not be sat with school)
    • 12:30 PM Graduates line up to go to seats
    • 1:00 PM Ceremony starts
  • Second ceremony
    • 3:00 PM Student check-in opens
    • 3:45 PM Guests with accommodated tickets
    • 4:00 PM Guest entry opens
    • 4:15 PM Student check-in closes (late arrivals may not be sat with school)
    • 4:30 PM Students line up to go to seats
    • 5:00 PM Ceremony starts

How long is the ceremony?

  • Each ceremony is expected to be about 1 hour and 45 minutes long

Where do I go on Commencement Day?

  • Students: check-in at Dempsey Indoor facility
  • Guests: Alaska Airlines Arena at Hec Edmundson Pavillion

Where do I park?

If you wish to guarantee parking in a particular lot, it is recommended that you pre-purchase a permit, since some lots may sell out. Available lots include: See parking map

  • E-1/E-18 (shuttle available)
  • Padelford Parking Garage
  • Accessible (ADA) Parking: E17

Where can I store my belongings?

  • Do not bring anything you cannot carry with you across the stage as you receive your diploma. There is no storage of personal belongings. Please leave them at home or with your friends and family prior to entering the arena.

Can I sit next to my friends at the ceremony?

  • Graduates are organized by school. You may sit next to whomever you like within your school. When you line up, make sure you line up in front of or behind who you would like to sit next to.

What do I receive when I cross the stage?

  • You will receive a diploma cover, and your diploma will be mailed to you approximately 3-4 months after graduation. If you have any questions about your diploma, please email the UWB Registrar at uwbreg@uw.edu.

I am participating in the ceremony and have limited mobility or special needs.

  • Arena access for accommodated students is limited - if you have any mobility issues or special needs, be sure to make your requests for accommodations on the registration form for the ceremony. Find out more about disability accommodations to ensure we plan the appropriate accommodations for you at the ceremony.

How do I find my family and friends after the ceremony?

  • Students should have a pre-determined plan to meet friends and family members after the ceremony.

COVID protocol

The University of Washington Bothell will follow the health guidance of the State of Washington and King County Health Department for COVID protocols for this year’s commencement ceremonies.

Masks are not required but are strongly recommended.

*If you feel sick, test positive or have been exposed to COVID-19 please do not attend the ceremony.