Graduate Convocation

Friday, May 25, 2018, 6 p.m.

Location: Carpenter Sports Building (CSB) – located near Old College (North College Ave and Main St.)

Please check the University website for more details on Saturday morning’s University Commencement.

Convocation will be webcast live on May 25, from 6 p.m. at

What’s the difference between Commencement and Convocation?

Lerner College convocations are personalized graduation ceremonies for Lerner. All degree candidates’ names are called and they walk across stage while being recognized, unlike at the UD Commencement ceremony.


Time Event
5 p.m. Doors open; audience members enter through the glass doors to the lobby and will proceed to Gym 2; graduates assemble at the steps of Old College.
5:15 p.m. Degree candidates must be assembled at the steps of Old College for class photo. Procession begins at 5:40 p.m.
6-7 p.m. Ceremony.
7-8 p.m. Celebration reception at Trabant multi-purpose rooms (next to Trabant Parking Garage).


Free tickets are required for guests attending the ceremony. Graduates who are wearing caps and gowns do not need tickets. Registration opens on April 5, 2018.  To reserve your tickets, please visit: (instructions on how to reserve tickets are included at the link). If you have questions, please contact MBA Services at

If you need additional tickets, send a request and a non-udel email address to before noon on Monday, May 7, 2018.

Accommodations and Restaurants

See for links to area hotels. Find a place to eat at

Special Access

If you or someone in your party requires assistance or special access for a physical disability, please bring it to our attention as soon as possible. Fill out the special seating request form:

Those with special needs will be seated first.


Plan to park in the Trabant Garage at 17 W. Main Street, Newark, DE. We have been assured that parking for Convocations is free. The reception is in the Trabant University Center adjacent to the garage.

This will be a busy evening on campus, so allow plenty of time for travel and parking. Further parking information and directions will be available on the Commencement UD website.


We are hoping for beautiful weather for the big day. In the event of severe weather or lots of rain, we will meet and process from another gym inside the Carpenter Sports Building. Seat your guests and then follow staff instructions to the new meeting location. Weather-related decisions will be made and communicated via email, or you can contact the Graduate & MBA Programs Office at 302-831-2221.

Please advise your guests to dress appropriately. Unless there is lightning, the doors will remain closed until one hour before the ceremony. If it is raining, they will need to bring umbrellas and/or rain gear. If it is hot, they should dress accordingly and bring bottled water.


Restrooms in the Carpenter Sports Building are accessible and easy-to-find. Building and/or event staff can point you in the right direction.

Information for Graduates

What to Wear

Cap & Gown

Order/pick up your cap and gown from the UD Bookstore located at 83 East Main Street. Their phone number is (302) 831-2637. Store hours are Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 7 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. and Sunday 12 – 6 p.m.

Make sure you request the right degree. If you are an MBA student, order an MBA (drab brown) hood and black/graduate tassel. If you are an M.S. student, order an M.S. (gold) hood and black/graduate tassel. If you are a dual degree candidate, pick one. (You might want to check your degree on UDSIS. For example, some people get confused whether they are an MBA with an IT concentration or M.S. ISTM.)

Order early and take it out of the bag immediately – it will be wrinkled! Do not wash it, just hang it up. If the wrinkles do not come out, use a cool iron.

Hoods and Tassels

All graduate tassels are black. Wear your tassel on your right side so it doesn’t block the photographer’s shot. Graduate tassels are not changed from right to left (that is historically an undergrad tradition).

The hoods have a small cord that is meant to attach to the buttons on a dress shirt. Women, if you aren’t wearing a blouse with buttons, use a medium-sized safety pin to secure the hood to the zipper tape (the fabric bordering the zipper). Otherwise, the hood will slide around as you move. MBAs should have brown velvet (the official color is called drab) hoods and all M.S. candidates (finance, accounting, ENTR, MSIB, ISTM, HBM) should have gold velvet hoods.

Clothing & Accessories

If it’s warm or hot, wear lightweight clothes, no jackets. Men: the graduation gown looks best with a shirt and tie, rather than an open-necked shirt. Remember to shine your shoes since everyone will see them. Women: choose shoes that will allow you to be comfortable standing on hard, slick floors and walking up and down steps in front of a lot of people.

For the reception, you can wear either your graduation gown or take it off and wear normal clothes.

Bobby pins/safety-pins: please provide your own and/or bring some to share. You may want to bobby-pin your cap to your hair.

Purses: please leave your large purse with family or friends, or locked in your car. If you must have a handbag, get a small one that you can carry unobtrusively in your hand.

Cell phones: on vibrate, please. Remind your guests to turn theirs to vibrate as well. Better yet, turn them off and enjoy your big day!

Arriving Early

We encourage you to arrive early; however, we may not be able to wait near the Carpenter Sports Building (CSB). Consider waiting at Trabant Student Center, the Morris Library, tour One South Main, Lerner and Purnell Halls, take a walk around campus or just sit outside and enjoy the day. Whatever your plan, be sure to leave enough time to get to CSB by 5 p.m.

Your Guests

Please drop your guests at the Carpenter Sports Building any time after 5 p.m. while you go to the steps at the front of Old College Hall to form the procession at 5:15 p.m. Please do not let them follow you to the processional staging area.

Those with special needs will be seated first. Please ask your guests to be considerate of families who have special needs. There are plenty of seats for everyone.

Small Children

Children who need a seat require a ticket; children who can sit on someone’s lap do not. The ceremony lasts about one hour – please bring children something to eat and do while the ceremony is in progress. If a child is disruptive, we will ask to have someone in your family take him/her to the lobby or outside.

Because of the length of the program and reception, you may want to consider arranging for a sitter so that you and your guests can enjoy an evening celebrating.

The Name Card

As you reach your seat, you’ll find the card the name readers will use to call your name when you cross the stage. Please fill out the name card quickly (it’s very short) once the ceremony begins and bring it with you to the stage.

For those of you graduating with dual degrees, you’ll choose which degree group you sit with, but we’ll announce both if you list both on the card.

Certificates, not Diplomas

When you cross the stage, the Dean will present you with a certificate, not a diploma. As you know, final exams run right up to graduation, so grades haven’t posted, degrees haven’t been cleared, and therefore, diplomas haven’t been printed. Starting in early June, the Grad Office will begin clearing degrees and will send the list of graduates to the printers. You should expect your official UD diploma to arrive in the US Mail approximately mid-July if you are a spring grad, late September for summer grads.


A professional photographer will be on hand for your big day! Photographers from GradImages will be taking a class photo on the steps of Old College just before the processional, and will also be taking action shots of you receiving your certificate from the Dean. The commercial photographer’s website is The name card you fill out (see above) will go directly to GradImages and they will send your proofs via email.

Please ask your family members to avoid getting in the photographer’s area while they are taking their photos. Remember that other families want to snap photos of their graduate so be considerate of others.

The Reception

The reception will be in the Multi Purpose Room (MPR) in the Trabant University Center, adjacent to the parking garage where your car will be. There will be light hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar. Please make sure your guests bring money for drinks. Graduates will receive a drink ticket during the ceremony, taped to the back of your gift. There is no program planned at the reception.

Your guests will need their tickets for entry to the reception. Your cap and gown is your ticket. If you change after the ceremony, please bring your paper ticket.

What to Expect

  • We will process into Carpenter Sports Building from the steps at Old College Hall, led by the bagpiper and the platform party (the Dean and faculty). You will be in degree order (ACCT, MBA, ECON, EEEE, ENTR, FINC, HBM, IB, ISTM) and directed by ushers into your seat. Please remain standing until directed to sit. Once seated, fill out the name cards.
  • The departmental awards will be presented, and an alum will present a short 10-12 minute speech.
  • Next, we’ll recognize Ph.D. recipients and their advisors. We then begin the procession of students across the stage. You’ll come forward (ACCT, MBA, ECON, etc.) and hand your name card to the announcer, who will read your card and your degree/s as you cross the stage. You’ll shake hands with the Dean and faculty from your department, get your photo taken with the Dean, proceed across the stage, collect a small gift from the College, then down the steps, stop for a photograph, and then be directed back around to your seat. All you have to do is smile and follow directions.
  • Once all degree recipients have crossed the stage, the Dean will adjourn the ceremony and we’ll begin a recessional out. Friends and family will follow the students and everyone will meet up in the area outside Carpenter Sports Building, and then proceed to the reception. Please pick a meeting spot where you will connect with your family outside.
  • Once you arrive in Trabant Multipurpose Room for the reception, you’ll find limited seating (it’s a mix-and-mingle event), but please give consideration to those family members for whom mixing and mingling is a bit more difficult. There is no program planned during the reception – simply enjoy the evening.